Toy Box Plans – Make a Toy Box the Easy Way

If your kids leave their toys scattered everywhere, it’s time you create a toy box where they can put all their playthings. With the proper toy box plans and willingness to go through the project, it’s going to be a lot easier than you think. Here’s what you need to do.

Things You Will Need

You’re going to build an MDF toy box measuring 800mm length x 400mm height (approx. 31 x 15 x 15 inches):

  • Hearing protection (when you use the drill)
  • Safety glasses (when you use the drill)
  • Wood glue
  • 35mm / 1.3 inch hinge hole cutter drill piece
  • 5mm drill piece
  • 2.5mm drill piece
  • Drill
  • Things You Will NeedScrewdriver (for matching screws head)
  • Pencil
  • Measuring Square
  • Large D handle
  • 2x 95° concealed hinges (full overlay, screw on)
  • 18x  4mm X 30mm (0.15 x 1.1 inch) Chipboard Screws
  • 4x heavy duty castors
  • 2x lids
  • 2x square pieces (18mm MDF 364 mm length x 400 mm height)
  • 4x rectangular pieces (18 mm MDF 800 mm length x 400mm height)

Step 1: The Sides

Begin by attaching the 3 long rectangular pieces that will make up the two sides and the bottom. Put one of the pieces at the bottom and another over the base, facing the same direction. Now put this right up at the edge, flushed. Measure from one of the side piece ends where the pilot holes are going to be and mark the spot with a pencil.

Put one screw at 200 mm, 400 mm, and 600 mm and a couple more at 25 mm from either end. Start measuring similar distances at the bottom and drill holes through the bottom. Drill a small pilot hole on the side piece. Glue on the side piece’s side and push up the side on the bottom. Keeping the pieces steady, utilize the pilot holes to set the screws. Repeat this step for the other side.

Step 2: Adding the Ends

Using the measurements here, use 2 screws in the center and for the bottom have one at 138 mm off the edge, then 200 mm and then 338 mm. Finally, have screws 25 mm on the ends. The pilot holes for the end pieces will be at 120 mm, 182 mm and 302 mm. In addition, add a couple of fixing screws 25 mm from the ends. Just like in the previous step, drill at the bottom all the way through but only a small opening at the end piece.

When it comes to attaching the end pieces to the side, use the measurements earlier, but the pilot holes have to be 400 mm height aspect of the end piece. This means you have to measure 100 mm, 200 mm and 300 mm at the sides and add a couple of fixing holes at 25 mm on either ends.

Repeat this for the end side pieces they will be joined to, and for each pilot hole you want them all the way for the sides, but only a small one for the end piece. Before you put the end pieces in the side pieces and over the bottom, apply a layer of glue on the side which will be attached on the bottom and position it. Remove any excess glue and if necessary, have someone help you hold the structure while you secure the pieces with screws.

Step 2: Adding the Ends

Drill a hole with a hinge hole cutter (35 mm will do). This will allow the top hinge to fit in nicely and close. You’ll want the hinges 100 mm from each end so take the appropriate measurements and mark them. Now measure 21.5 mm off the edge and note where the hole center will be. Now drill a hole so the hinge’s circular head will fit flush.

Set the hinge top on the hole you just made and line this onto the top. After measuring 37 mm off the edge, mark a hole at the mounting plate. On the area where you’re putting the stay, mark the upper inside edge 101 mm at the side panel. From this point draw down to 73 mm then make a cross 39 mm up. Set a spirit level below this cross and create a horizontal line and create a cross 16 mm at both sides. Done properly you will end up with a three marks with a triangular shape.

Drill with the 3.5 mm drill bit. Create a center line on the lid and one at the 126 mm mark at the underside from the back edge. Do the same at 12 mm at the side panel off the lid’s side edge. Finally, put two marks 16 mm from both sides and drill pilot holes there and install the bracket.

Step 4: Finishing Touch

You’re just about done and just need to install the D handle, which you do by measuring between two hole centers at the handle. Position the handle where it needs to be and drill holes. Screw it onto the box.

Now you have to install the castors: simply attach these at the base of the box, drilling holes in the appropriate locations and securing with screws. Test the castors by rolling the box to make sure they don’t come off.

That’s it, you’re done. Now you can put toys in the box or you can paint it. Since this is a children’s toy box you can color it in different ways and even apply stencils or other designs. If you’re going to paint the box, make sure there’s no lead and that it’s completely dry before being given to the child. And don’t forget to wear a mask to protect yourself from the fumes while painting.

How to Become a Better Woodworker

If you’re done making this toy box and want to learn more beginner woodworking projects, check out Ted’s Woodworking Plans, where you get access to more than 16,000 DIY projects including furniture, gazebos, toy box plans, bird feeders and more. Created by professional woodworker Ted McGrath, it’s the ideal program for expanding your woodworking knowledge.

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Coffee Table Plans for Beginners

Sure you can buy a coffee table anywhere, but where’s the fun in that when you can build one? If you’re an aspiring woodworker, one of the first projects you’ll want to tackle is this one, as these coffee table plans are not that difficult. Start by gathering the following tools and materials.

What You Will Need

  • 120, 180 and 220 grit sandpaper
  • Utility knife
  • What You Will NeedEdging trimmer
  • 6 mm and 18 mm (.25- and .75-inch) wood chisels
  • Drill with 6 mm (.25 inch) drill bit
  • Table saw
  • Electric sander
  • Disposable brushes
  • Wood glue
  • “S” hooks with screws
  • 19 mm (13/16 inch) wood veneer edged tape (pre-glued)
  • 18 mm (.75-inch) wide wood for skirts
  • For the wood legs: 36 mm x 36 mm (1.5-inch x 1.5-inch) long
  • For the top: 600 mm x 1200 mm x 18 mm (24-inch x 48-inch x 3/4-inch) plywood

For this project the table will be (600 mm-to-1,200 mm) wide, 24 inches (61.0 cm)-to-48 inches (121.9 cm) long and 16 inches (40.6 cm)-to-24 inches (400 mm-to-600 mm) high.

Step 1

Mil and cut the wood according to the dimensions given above. The milling process is important because it’s going to eliminate existing defects and flatten the surface, essential for joining.

Step 2

Join the legs onto the skirt using a tenon joint and mortise. The mortise is the square hole you create in the leg’s sides so the tenon at the end at the skirts’ ends will fit in nicely. You create the tenon by taking out material from the skirt until they can slide inside the mortise you made on the leg.

Step 3

Fit the mortises onto the tenons and legs: there’s no need to use glue. Ensure that the pieces fit properly and there aren’t any loose parts or gaps at the joints. Inspect these sections as thoroughly as possible before applying the glue on your coffee table. If everything looks okay, glue these pieces, starting with the longer ones. Apply glue on the insides of the mortise using a brush. Spread the glue evenly on the sides.

Step 4

Put the tenons in place and clamp them. Let the glue set and join the skirt tenons onto the two sides. Next, glue the skirts’ ends on the legs.

Step 5

Make certain the table legs are square by measuring from corner to corner (the distance between the corners have to be equal). Adjusting the clamps requires trial and error so keep doing it until you get the position right. At the same time you need to do this fast because the glue is going to dry soon.

Step 6

Now you have to assemble the top, which can be quite complex. To make it easy, cut the top piece according to the dimensions given above. You can make things easier by edging the top with an adhesive wood veneer tape. Unroll the tape and cut to the desired length with a utility cutting tool. Peel the backing off and press the tape at the edge.

Use a flat iron or hand roller to press on the edge. Repeat this on all sides. When you’re done get a trimmer knife and clean off the tape’s edge.

Step 7

Use the S hooks to attach the top onto the base. The S hooks, which are meant to keep the table onto the skirt, are placed in cut slots on the skirt. These slots are cut by a biscuit joiner. If you don’t have a biscuit joiner you can use a biscuit router bit hooked on your router instead. Center the bottom on the tabletop. Put the table upside on the floor and the S hooks in the slots and secure them to the bottom with screws.

Finishing Touches

Finishing TouchesAt this point you can paint the table or apply several coats of polyurethane. You might also want to apply varnish after sanding the table.

Tip: to make the table as smooth as possible, sand with progressively finer sandpaper grits. If you’re applying varnish or polyurethane, use “000” steel wool in-between applications. When the finish has dried, apply furniture wax so the table has protective coating.

When you’re done, position the table where you want to, and congratulate yourself for a job well done.

Tips and Warnings

The steps for creating a coffee table are straightforward, but you do need to exercise patience and follow the directions given here. In addition, keep in mind that glue takes time to settle down. The slower it takes for the glue to harden, the better for novices because you’ll have more time to make adjustments. But remember to wipe any excess glue because it’s going to leave marks when you apply stain to the wood.

Here are a few more things to consider:

  • Invest in quality tools: you are only as good as the tools you’re going to use so if you’re serious about woodworking, get the good stuff.
  • If you don’t have time to mill and cut, you can buy these at various supply houses and online.
  • Don’t start any woodworking project without having the dimensions and specs of the table or any object predetermined.
  • To make things easier for yourself, start by deciding what you want to make, set the dimensions, gather the tools and materials and proceed step by step.
  • Stick to the plan: if you have decided on a specific size, don’t change it midway through the construction.
  • Don’t apply too much glue because it’s going to make it harder to fit the mortise and tenon joints.
  • Custom woodworking requires space and well ventilated environment. Make sure you’re working in a place where there’s sufficient ventilation and it isn’t cluttered. Don’t work in tight areas where you could easily lose screws and other tools.

Reminders

If you’re looking for more woodworking projects for beginners, check out Ted’s Woodworking Plans, which comes with more than 16,000 plans, diagrams and blueprints. Plus you get more than hundred videos showing how to create all kinds of DIY projects, and you’ll even learn how to start your own woodworking business.

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Gun Cabinet Plans – Make One for Yourself

The Internet is full of gun cabinet plans but the problem is they require a lot of tools and materials, and the instructions are so difficult to follow you’re better off just buying one. But if you want to make a cabinet yourself, there’s an easier way given below. Just remember to wear safety goggles and be safe.

Things You’ll Need

  • Things You’ll NeedWood glue
  • Saw
  • Hinges
  • 3 sheets of 1-inch thick plywood
  • Drill bits
  • 1/4 -inch thick Plexiglas
  • Electric drill
  • Padlock
  • Latch
  • Wood stain
  • Sanding paper
  • Galvanized steel screws
  • Electric screwdriver
  • Pencil
  • Tape measure

Step 1: Measurements

Measure the wood: here you’ll be constructing a 2 foot deep, 4 foot wide and 6 foot high cabinet. Set the plywood sheets down and use the tape measure and mark with the pencil.

Start by measuring 6 feet from one of the plywood sheets, beginning at the bottom. Next, measure 4 feet going to the long end and join this end to the plywood’s bottom. Do this two times and you have the back and front. To create the sides, measure 6 feet   from the bottom and 2 feet across. Do this two times.

Create the top and bottom measuring 2 feet wide and 4 feet long. Since the dimensions are already drawn you just need to cut these and sand the corners.

Step 2: Assembly

Select one of the bigger pieces to be the cabinet’s back and put it aside for now. Put a side panel against the back piece’s edge. Screw every six inches. Repeat this with the other side panel.

Step 3: The Firearms Holders

Now it’s time to create placeholders for your guns. To do this, saw a couple of wood pieces so they’re 6 inches wide and 2 feet long. Glue one of these inside the cabinet about 6 inches from the bottom (this will be the shelf). Get the other piece of wood you cut and make half a dozen 1×1-inch deep notches in them. Glue this 6 inches off the top.

Step 4: Create the Door

Get the hinges and install them six inches from the bottom and top. Cut the Plexiglas to the same size as the other wood piece left. Get the front piece and measure four inches from the sides, bottom and top and slice the inner section. Glue the Plexiglas and when it’s set turn the door and hook up the hinges. Secure the latch where the door will close so you can padlock it.

Step 5: Finish Touches

Add a knob, paint or stain it, it’s up to you. If you’re going to paint, open the windows or turn a fan on: ventilation is important. You should also wear a mask to protect yourself. Of course you can leave the wood cabinet as it is, the decision is yours.

How to Build a Gun Safe

How to Build a Gun SafeIf you don’t want to build a cabinet from the ground up, you can buy a secondhand wall locker or a wardrobe unit. There are many places where you can get these, but the best option would be at government surplus auctions (however you can also find many of these online): look for a unit like those used by the military.

When you have the unit, spot weld the seams and weld the hasps at the bottom, top and middle of the door. This will be necessary to keep the safe secure using padlocks. To be on the safe side, you should install several hasps and set them at the top, middle and bottom.

These units usually have hooks but if not, install them as well as drawers, shelves, hangers and other stuff you deem essential. There’s no hard and fast rule since it will depend on how many guns you’re going to put there. Shelves can be used to store handguns and ammo, while shotguns, rifles and other long firearms can be hung on hooks. Cleaning supplies and accessories can be placed inside drawers.

Tips and Warnings

If you’re an avid gun collector, make the cabinet as large as you can build it. If you have any plans in the future to buy more guns, the cabinet needs to have sufficient room to accommodate them. Always leave room for more so you don’t have to start from the ground up and build another one.

If the cabinet will be used to display guns, place it in a prominent location, but make sure that safety features are embedded in it. Here are a few other things to keep in mind:

  • If you collect mostly handguns and small firearms, your cabinet or safe should have plenty of drawers. If you collect mostly rifles and the like, hangers will be the priority.
  • Be as accurate as possible with the measurements: use a level if necessary.
  • Painting a gun cabinet is a pretty straightforward process, but remember to apply the strokes evenly and wait for the coating to dry before putting the guns in place.
  • No matter how experienced you are with DIY projects, always wear protective gear including a dust mask. The mask is useful not just when painting but to keep saw dust away from your eyes.
  • Do not smoke while you’re painting or have just finished painting.
  • If you have a 3D CAD program, you can use that to visualize the gun cabinet. CAD software gives you the opportunity to try out different designs and concepts. These are available online and it might be worth your while to learn how they work.

Final Tips

The gun cabinet plans given here should get you started, and as you can see it isn’t that hard to build one of these. But if you’re looking for more detailed gun cabinet plans you should check out Ted’s Woodworking, which comes with thousands of DIY projects like cabinets, sheds, chairs and different types of furniture. Aside from the tutorials and videos, there are also videos and CAD software included. This program was created by Ted McGrath, a professional woodworker with years of experience.

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Bunk Bed Plans – Step by Step Guide

There are a lot of bunk bed plans online, but most of them are either too difficult to follow or don’t provide enough instructions and assume you already know what to do. While there are many ways to make a bunk bed, the following is a simpler method, so if you’re new to DIY this can help. Note: this article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of woodworking and know how to use carpentry tools.

Required Materials

  • Required Materials28 @ #10 x 1 ½ inch wood screws
  • 64 @ #10 x 2 ½ inch wood screws
  • 34 @ 5/16 x 1 inch washers
  • 12 @ 5/16 x 2 ½ inch lag bolts
  • 22 @ 5/16 x 4 inch lag bolts
  • 2 @ 2 x 6 x 96
  • 7 @ 1 x 4 x 96
  • 3 @ 2 x 2 x 96
  • 5 @ 2 x 4 x 96
  • 3 @ 2 x 8 x 96

Required Tools

  • Clamp
  • Ratchet set or wrench
  • Hand or hacksaw
  • Robertson (Loxon) screwdriver
  • Level
  • Stud finder
  • Drill

The Parts

  • Foot rail: 2 x 4 x 40
  • Side rail: 2 x 4 x 50
  • Rail supports: 2 x 4 x 20 (4)
  • Ladder steps: 2 x 4 x 16 (6)
  • Ladder risers: 2 x 6 x 66 (2)
  • Slats: 1 x 4 x 37 ½ (14)
  • The PartsEnd support: 2 x 2 x 33
  • End support: 2 x 2 x 34 ½
  • Slat support: 2 x 2 x 71 ½
  • Slat support: 2 x 2 x 75
  • Post part: 2 x 4 x 57
  • Post part: 2 x 4 x 57
  • Outer board: 2 x 8 x 78
  • Foot board: 2 x 8 x 40 ½
  • Side board: 2 x 8 x 75
  • Head board: 2 x 8 x 40 ½

Construct the Upper Structure

  1. Decide how high you want the structure to be and the clearance.
  2. Use the stud finder to find the studs and drill holes a bit smaller than the lag bolts’ diameters. Use four 4″ washers and lag bolts to attach the headboard.
  3. Drill holes in the studs and the sideboard. Install the sideboard using eight 4″  washers and lag bolts. Use a wrench to fasten it in place.
  4. Go to the end of the sideboard and drill holes there. Do the same for the footboard’s face. Get a couple of washers and lag bolts and attach the sideboard and footboard.

Create the Lower Structure

  1. Saw a support post up to the clearance’s height plus four inches and join a couple of 2x4s facing each other. Screw the 2x4s.
  2. Put a level over the footboard and set the support post against the footboard and adjust the footboard so it’s level. Once you’ve clamped the footboard, post it (you might need a helper here).
  3. The next step is to drill holes on the support post and the footboard’s face. Use a couple of the washers and lag bolts to join the footboard and support.
  4. Ask a helper to help you clamp the board on the support post.
  5. Drill holes on the outer board’s face and the ends of the support post, the footboard and the headboard. Fasten the outer board on the footboard, headboard and the support post.

Make the Slats

  1. Place the slat support on the outer board’s inside so the slat support is even with the top of the support post. Use a level to make sure the alignment is correct and screw in place.
  2. Place the other slat support on the sideboard’s inside so the top is level to the support post’s top. Fasten the screws when aligned.
  3. Position the end support to the inside of the headboard until it is even with the slat supports. Secure with screws.
  4. Install the second end support at the inside of the footboard so the top of the end support is level with the support post and the slat support’s top.
  5. Mark and measure the locations of the 14 slats and attach the slats evenly by drilling holes on the ends of the side slat supports. A couple of 1 ½” screws will be enough to secure it.
  6. Once you’ve built the ladder, attach it to the bunk bed, and you’re done.

Tips and Warnings

Follow the instructions given so you don’t get confused, and prepare the tools and materials beforehand so your work will be uninterrupted. Here are a few other pointers:

  • Tips and TricksOnly a single screw is necessary when you attach the slats on the slat support. The screw really isn’t as much a support as it is to keep the slat from slipping.
  • For a more refined appearance, round the bottom and top edges of the rail supports’ outward face. You can do this by removing ½ of the wood from each face. Do this at a 45 degree angle and finish it off with a sander.
  • Keep in mind that the bunk design given above is for a single mattress only. The specs for the materials and parts are for single mattress beds, so if you’re going  to build a bigger bed adjust the figures accordingly.
  • Take care when using the tools. Make sure you are wearing protective goggles to  keep saw dust from your eyes, and wear gloves too. Keep the lag bolts and washers in one container so you don’t lose them.
  • Take your time when constructing the bunk bed. If this is your first time it might take a while, so be patient and go through each step carefully.

While the loft bed plans given above provides you with a good starting point, there’s so much more you can do if equipped with the right knowledge and program. If you want to expand your knowledge and build other cool stuff, you might want to take a look at Ted’s Woodworking Plans. There are over 16,000 plans here including bunk beds, tables, chairs, gazebos and more, plus there are over 150 videos.

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