Repurposing an old tool box into a drilling cabinet.

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  • dbhost
    Slow and steady
    • Apr 2008
    • 9180
    • League City, Texas
    • Ryobi BT3100

    Repurposing an old tool box into a drilling cabinet.

    As I have talked about before, I guess I will build a thread on. But with the new 52" tool chest / cabinet combo I am going to repurpose my old 26" roller cabinet, most likely sell or donate my top chest, but the roller cabinet, let's go back to that.

    The roller cabinet is an early 90s, as in 1990, Craftsman 26" 9 drawer roller cabinet. Over the years, decades, of fairly hard use and honestly automotive lubricant and chemical exposure, the tool box finish is more or less trashed. I mean at a 10 foot view it is fine, but there are big chips out of the finish on the face of it, and the drawers on the inside as it never came iwth liners, and my liners that I made disintegrated probably 20 years ago, well... they need paint. So...

    After more research than is probably healthy to do to find matching colors, I got the red, and gray paint, plus some epoxy primer, I made a bent hook drawer slide release from one of my way too many spare hacksaw blades and have started pulling the drawers out.

    The locking mechanism, the lock itself, was basically falling apart after all this time, and so I got in touch with Black and Decker, and got a keyed to match lock set so that my old cabinet lock can match my new cabinet, so single key access to my tool box and cabinet.

    Next step is to take drawers out to the driveway, with more than ample amounts of CRC Brakeleen and strip out any remaining lubricants, tracer dyes, etc... from the drawers, strip them bare, then give them a good scrub with some Dawn dish soapy water, and a thorough rinse and sun dry. Then I can tape off the trim and hit the things with sanding them down. Not going to bare metal except where bare metal exists, just trying to etch a bonding surface for new paint...

    Wipe it all down with prep solvent and hit them with epoxy primer, and let that sit for a couple of days to cure...

    Similar treatment to the cabinet itself, but there is a flip out side tray with a grip tape type surface on the left side. I need to tape off that surface as well.

    Once the primer is fully cured, and humidity low enough, I will paint the drawers, and the cabinet itself, time will be spent feathering and blocking so that I get as smooth a finish as I can, not show car grade, but I still want a good finish...

    Do at least 2 coats, if not 3. And let them fully cure.

    Once the paint is cured, I will go ahead and install the new lock, make any adjustments needed to the locking system rods and pivots.

    I WAS considering milling down some SYP 2x4 stock to make a wooden top for the box, but I have found that Home Depot actually sells pre made Maple 26" toiol box tops, for less than I can make one...

    So the idea here is to install it to the top of the tool box. Use some Liquid Nails for Projects to help bond it down. Set on the benchtop drill press, mark my hole locations, drill my bolt holes, and deburr on the back side / inside of the tool box. Touching up the bare metal with some primer, and then just one quick shot of paint. Just trying to prevent rust there...

    Once it is ready to go together, planning on using bolts from underneath, with fender washers to distrubute the load across as wide of an area as possible, and of course washers / locking nuts on top...

    Lastly, reassemble drawers into the cabinet, and roll it into place...

    So the project is already started, will get progress pics up soon...
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