I’m teaching woodworkers how to make the Dutch tool chest all over the hemisphere this year. I have Dutch chest classes going in California in March, Alaska in April, North Carolina in June, and in Maine and England in July.
Plans for the chest are in the October 2013 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine, in case you cannot travel to a class.
The Dutch chest is a great project for beginners or for those woodworkers who travel with their tools. It protects your tools, makes them easy to get to while you’re working and is easy to build with dimensional pine.
If you are taking one of the Dutch chest classes this year or seek to make one one your own, here is the list of tools I think are necessary to get the job done.
Saw, layout tools, cutting gauge, marking knife, chisels, coping saw, mallet etc.
Birdcage or Brad awl
If you can’t find a used one, Czeck Edge, Blue Spruce Tools and Lee Valley all make good examples.
Panel saws (rip and crosscut)
These are the tools needed to dimension the stock. A 7- or 8- point crosscut is handy. For the rip, a saw that is 7 point or coarser is ideal.
Backsaws (carcase saw)
This saw is ideal for trimming the pieces to final length and some joinery cuts. And sharp carcase saw will do.
Router plane (large)
A vintage tool such as the Stanley 71 will do. Also check out modern closed-throat examples from Veritas and Lie-Nielsen Toolworks. This tool finishes all the dado cuts.
Rabbet plane (or a tongue-and-groove plane if you prefer that)
I use a moving fillister for all the rabbet cuts in this project, but a straight rabbet will handle all the shiplap joints.
A Stanley No. 5 or the wooden equivalent is necessary for almost any project. Once you get the iron sharpened to an 8” or 10” radius, you can conquer the world.
Block plane or Smoothing plane
Either tool can handle the final surfacing of the pine boards.
Hand drill. Bits. Countersink
If you have an electric drill, good for you. A good hand drill is about $10 and never will go in the trash.
Hammer, nail set, nail pullers
A 16 oz. hammer with a wooden handle (I like octagonal handles) will serve you for the next 120 years.
Good screwdrivers from Grace USA are the cat’s meow. But you can buy old ones and grind them to perfection if you prefer.
It seems like a carpenter’s tool, but hand tool woodworkers are lost without it.
Paraffin (or no-kill mutton tallow) to lubricate your tools
• Moving fillister plane (for making the thumbnail moulding on the lid and drop front)
• 1/8” or 3/16” beading plane for detailing the backs (a No. 66 beading tool would also work)
• Shooting plane and shooting board
• Router plane (small) to make the recesses for the sliding lock.
— Christopher Schwarz