A few Saturdays ago, I attended the Midwest Tool Collector’s Association (MWTCA) tool meet, and finished acquiring all the tools listed in The Anarchist’s Tool Chest (ATC) book, yea! I can fit almost all of my tools in my traveling version of the ATC, except my saws. So I got to thinking that I currently did not have a good way to store or transport my saws. During the MWTCA tool meet, I saw an old military ammo crate that would have almost done the trick. I did not buy the crate…because I thought it would be more fun to build my own!
On Sunday, my daughter and I went to the local home center to pick up a 1x10x8 board. Before I actually started to cut wood, I needed to prototype the till to make sure it would work for me. I read in the ATC that Chris Schwarz needed to tinker a bit with his design before committing it to wood, so I fashioned a version from scrap wood, roughly following Chris’s design in the ATC. The big difference in mine was that I decided to make it for 7 saws instead of 4. My decision to build a bigger one was based on this reasoning: If I take it to a class that is not saw-focused, I can just load it with the standard 4 saws: Rip, Crosscut, Dovetail and Carcass. If I take it to a saw sharpening class, I can load it up with multiple saws to be worked on. Plus, at home, it will maximize storage.
Here is a pic of my prototype saw till. It is smaller than the actual till, but it was a great proof of concept.
After using the prototype till for a while, I designed the box around it, while allowing for some extra room. I made my production till 8″ wide and 8″ tall and made of pine. I made my saw cuts 1 3/8″ apart, keeping the saw handles and blades 5/16″ apart at their closest on each side.
So, here is my saw till. The 3″ radius semi-circle cut in the top, allows the back saws to be level with the panel saws.
Below is a pic of one of my finished dovetailed corners of the saw box.
More to come soon …