Just because you own a small machine shop doesn’t mean you must forgo all the time savers used by large shops. Just think creatively and think out of the box. For example, you know tools are in danger every time they get moved. So, don't spend money on an expensive tool cart. Make a tool cart yourself. It's an easy DIY project. All you need is a CNC tool tray
and an inexpensive 16 x 30 utility cart. Here’s how.
Find a Utility Cart
The cart is easy to find. Go to the closest Harbor Freight or Home Depot. Fire up that Amazon Prime account. Just look for a few things
Get the 16 x 30 size on wheels. The wheels are important if you want versatility. It doesn't matter if you get metal or high-grade plastic. Harbor Freight sell
s one for under $50. The number of shelves you get depends on the number of tools you need to store. Got tons of tooling? Get the 3 shelf model. Making a cart for the home/hobby shop? Two shelves should do you. Just make sure it is a 16 x 30 cart. The size is crucial.
Next Comes the CNC Tool Tray
Step two. Get the right number of CNC tool trays to store your tools. Get the right size CNC tool tray. For example, buy a CNC tool tray from The Tool Company
and it will be 15 ¾” by 6 ¾”. So, you can set 4 of them side by side on each cart shelf. Depending on the number of shelves, you will store up to 80 of your tools. That's if you have 40 taper tools and a two-shelf cart. That's it. One completely genius and absolutely affordable way to protect tools and keep them in order! It still works if your machine has a 30 taper. The Tool Company's CNC 30 tray is the exact same size and holds the same number of tools. That means this genius hack works for CNC or manual machines with a 30 or 40 taper.
Using The Right CNC Tool Tray is Important
For this hack to work, you need a CNC tool tray that is a perfect fit. It's a bonus that the perfect fit just happens to be the perfect tool tray. That's because the perfect fitting tool tray comes from The Tool Company. Numbered openings make tool calibration and selection easy. Use the tray numbering to sequence the tools for the job in the tray. Like everything at The Tool Company, all tool trays are made right here in the USA. As a US machinist, support other US manufacturers! These CNC tool trays are made of high-impact plastic. So, they protect your expensive tooling from damage. Side ears make it easy to remove the tray from the cart. Awesome! So, what are you waiting for? Go and get your a CNC tool tray or 3 and make yourself a rolling tool cart. Order your CNC tool tray here
for a 30 or 40 taper and you'll know it’s made to fit a 16 x 30 utility cart.