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Portable tool box organization – the garage journal board

Home » Garage sale » Husky tool bag »

I started a thread a while back on picking out a tool box. I ended up with the Husky 20″ tool tote:

husky aluminum tool box


It holds pretty much all my hand tools. And it’s fairly easy to find what you need, or rather, it’s easy to locate the area the tool should be (if one is organized), and then you might have to pull out a few tools to find the right one. The fatal flaw I’m finding with this is that it is a real pain in the ass to put stuff back in once you’re done with it. If it is used to half its capacity, then it would function perfectly, but at nearly full capacity, I’m finding I scratch up my hands putting stuff back in, or have to struggle to hold a pouch or band open to fit something into a dark tight spot (and not the kind of dark tight spot I like ). And since it’s a tote, it’s not readily stackable, so getting another one to solve the access problem isn’t an option. Bottom line: my brother, who has fewer, and probably the perfect number of tools for this, will be getting a lightly used tool tote as a gift. As a side note, I also have the smaller 16″ Husky tote, and that works great as a trunk bag, but partly it’s because it’s smaller and you’re not tempted to cram as much stuff in there, and partly because you don’t need that many tools in a trunk bag for personal use.

husky pickup tool box


I think I’m going to get a standard portable tool box. Maybe something like this Dewalt box:

  • which separates like so:
  • or this Dewalt box:
  • or this Stanley 28″ FatMax
  • I’ve got a couple of power tools, but they came with their own box, so I’ll only be storing hand tools in the box. I imagine getting stuff into and out of the box will be much easier than with the Husky tote, but the challenge is organization so that I don’t have to empty half the box to find what I need.

    husky plastic tool box


    Any suggestions on how to store stuff in these standard boxes that have a top tray and a large lower compartment? Maybe I could insert some kind of divider into the bottom tray to separate drivers from ratchets from pliers, etc. Would it be too much to expect to keep socket rails in one of these boxes?

    husky tool box on wheels


    Oh, and I might end up getting two boxes, which would help with organization – I could devote one to all things ratchet. That Husky bag once loaded was pretty heavy and not much fun to pick up and remove from my closet every time I needed to hunt for a tool that wasn’t easily accessible in an outer pocket.

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