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Thread: Homemade tool box drawer thickness

  1. #11
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    Paint for the toolboxes is actually thinner than you think. That 0.040 to 0.045 is probably corresponding to about 20 gauge metal, about 0.036".

    Only powder coat would be thicker, most sprayed coats are 1 to 3 thou thick after drying. The Sears rollaround appears to be powder coat, the others appear to be liquid paint.
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  2. #12
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    I'll measure the thickness of a Lista tool chest drawer when I go back into my shop. They can hold 400lbs each so they are either quite heavy gauge or have lots of ribbing/etc.
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  3. #13
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    The metal Craftsman box I mentioned earlier seems to be ~20 ga (mics at .036) which kinda surprises me -- its brutally strong and heavy for its size. However, I have to remember that its also heavily reinforced with rolled edges and top-hat channels everywhere. They didn't spare much compromise when they built it. Maybe I'll mic out the MAC roller cab later.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by J Tiers View Post
    Paint for the toolboxes is actually thinner than you think. That 0.040 to 0.045 is probably corresponding to about 20 gauge metal, about 0.036".

    Only powder coat would be thicker, most sprayed coats are 1 to 3 thou thick after drying. The Sears rollaround appears to be powder coat, the others appear to be liquid paint.
    Got curious so I measured mine. Kennedy with the old brown wrinkle paint is.035 along the edge of the drawers. Can't find a seam to measure well on the outer carcase but looks the same. It's wrinkle but not all that thick a finish but still too thick to be 20Ga. So likely 22Ga.

    A Mechanic's Edge roller unit that sits under the Kennedy has a heavy textured hammertone finish. So the .045 it measures is likely 20Ga underneath.

    A Waterloo done in thin black paint is .028 where I can measure it. So MAYBE 23Ga but if not then certainly 22Ga.

  5. #15
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    Sorry I didn't post size I was gonna post a pic and couldn't get it to work .drawers will be 20" deep and about 19" wide it's mostly gonna be mill stuff my other thinner husky box carries the heavier stuff rotary table ,adjustable angle plate etc . I can cut everything with my plasma and I was thinking at that small size 20 gauge may be ok. I can easily do spots with pulse mig or even tig if I have to. I think I have a small section of 20 gauge sheet from something else I may just make up a sample to test out I know I can easily do 20 gauge on my lil simple angle iron brake .i'm also making a press brake for my 20 ton press and it I don't get that far my buddy Bob has a big tensmith finger brake I also like the idea of maybe making some of the bigger drawers with thicker gauge

  6. #16
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    Like I said on page one (1), You are more than welcome to use the Tennsmith brake. Just put all the fingers back and adjust it back to 1/16th when you are done. I suggest bringing some scrap to practice on so you get a feel for subtracting thickness and radius from your dimensions to hit final dimension. I always ruin the first piece of stock. I keep a copy of the manual out next to it.

    Just looked it up. Yeah its rated for 12 gage mild steel or 16 gage stainless.

    Machine Type
    Floor
    Bending Length (mm)
    1225.55
    Bending Length (Inch)
    48-1/4
    Maximum Mild Steel Capacity (mm)
    2.70
    Maximum Mild Steel Capacity (Gauge)
    12
    Maximum Stainless Steel Capacity (mm)
    1.60
    Maximum Stainless Steel Capacity (Gauge)
    16
    Maximum Depth of Box (mm)
    101.60
    Maximum Depth of Box (Inch)
    4
    Press Brake Style
    Box & Pan Brake
    Finger Width (mm)
    51.00; 76.00; 101.00
    Finger Width (Inch)
    2"; 3"; 4"
    Maximum Beam Lift (mm)
    38.10
    Maximum Beam Lift (Inch)
    1-1/2
    Overall Width (mm)
    1828.80
    Overall Width (Inch)
    72
    Overall Depth (mm)
    914.40
    Overall Depth (Inch)
    36
    Overall Height (mm)
    1346.20
    Overall Height (Inch)
    53
    Last edited by Bob La Londe; 01-12-2019 at 08:51 PM.
    *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

  7. #17
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    18ga will give you a pretty strong drawer in other words. You can use thinner, but I'd say don't go thinner than 20ga. Probably cost-effective enough at that gauge.

    You can always pick up some 1/8x1/2 flat bar and use that as bottom bracing. No need to figure out how to stamp ribs or hats. I'd glue these strips on, underneath, then determine after that if you want to place a rivet in each end just for security. You might find that one strip gives enough stiffness to the bottom, and perhaps two strips would be prudent, just for a nice quality feel. Glue a no-slip mat into each one after painting to help deaden the sound.

    You can rivet the slide hardware on so you don't have bolt heads or threads sticking out, and if you cut and bend the sheet properly you can have tabs at the corners to rivet those together.

    The dimensions you arrive at for the drawers could take into account the bender you'd be using to form them. My bender for instance could go to 30 inches wide, but there are optimum dimensions using the existing bending dies. I think I have a 10 inch wide die, an 8 inch wide, a 6 inch, 4 inch, a 2 and a 1 inch wide. I'd rather avoid using the narrower ones, as the bend looks nicer if you can stack just a few of the wider ones.
    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

  8. #18
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    One option for joining the stuff is use folded over edges and punch holes. Then since you've got TIG spot weld with tig through those holes to the main part below.

    It'll be a fun project. I hope you post a build thread when you get to it.

  9. #19
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    Those of you with TIG, MIG, spot weld, etc can fairly quickly 'assemble' these drawers, and that's great. Others such as myself can still put them together using mechanical fasteners. I'd be interested to hear from someone who has actually built their own drawers from steel sheet. Assembly details, costs, thoughts after having used them for awhile-
    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by darryl View Post
    Those of you with TIG, MIG, spot weld, etc can fairly quickly 'assemble' these drawers, and that's great. Others such as myself can still put them together using mechanical fasteners. I'd be interested to hear from someone who has actually built their own drawers from steel sheet. Assembly details, costs, thoughts after having used them for awhile-
    No drawers but plenty of boxes, seat risers, fenders, roofs, door panels, door frames, floor boards, firewalls, quarter panels, cowls, skirts, running boards, patch panels and countless press-formed small parts. If you don't have a welder, use pop-rivets. As I said before, draw your idea out on poster board first then use that to cut the stock. You should be able to make a drawer out of ONE piece of steel sheet. Don't use thin strap (flats) for added bottom support. It will add nothing for support. The bottom supports should be top hats or V-shape. And they need to be affixed to the bottom.

    If you can't bend a straight 90 between two flats or over a bench edge and make straight cuts with snips, make your drawers out of wood.

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