Product Review #2 01/04

Portable Project Centers and Toolboxes

Portable workstations, project centers, and toolboxes are essential for contractor and DIY'er alike. We decided to review a variety of brand new options to help you find the right product to fit your needs.

First, we took a look at a few examples of a relatively new-style tool storage unit on the market: the rolling project center. In a workshop, they fit nicely beneath most tool benches and their heavy wheels allow them to be quickly moved to where the action is. Besides the ample storage space they provide, we found the units' tops to be valuable work surfaces— where available surfaces can be few and far between.

The first project center we studied was the Craftsman 59955. It is a 5-drawer unit, of primarily metal construction with a baked enamel finish. The exterior—with the exception of the drawer faces and back panel—is protected by sturdy plastic panels that provide storage as well as protection for surrounding surfaces. The unit has five drawers, providing ample storage space... three shallow drawers and two deeper drawers great for larger tools. MORE...

Craftsman's 59497 4-Drawer Powered Project Center: It provides plenty of storage space, with an embedded power strip and recessed shelves to accommodate several battery chargers. The unit's top surface is comprised of two removable and interchangeable high-density fiberboard panels, providing a combination of possible worksurface materials. MORE...

When extreme portabilty is key, the rugged handheld toolbox has always been a reliable friend. However, older models which require tools to be stacked or piled inside, often found important tools misplaced or forgotten. Recent models have incorporated elements that have usually been found in their larger cousins. Among these additions, drawers now keep tools organized and at hand even better than before.

Craftsman 3-drawer toolbox, model #65628: The box is constructed of blow-molded plastic and features an internal locking mechanism that secures all the drawers as soon as the lid is closed—ideal for keeping tools in place even when the box is jostled around. MORE...

The Craftsman model #65337 tool chest is made of sturdy, yet surprisingly lightweight enameled steel, with three aluminum drawers on compound-action slides. The single handle on top allows for one-handed portability, its internal locking mechanism keeps the drawers securely in place whenever the lid is shut, and the hasp/staple can accomodate a padlock for added security. MORE...
On a jobsite—or even a workshop—accessible work surfaces can be at a minimum. That's why we decided to test a new version of an old companion: the portable workstation.
Black and Decker's Workmate model #WM425 is a great, portable workstation that folds up in a snap for easy transportation and storage (it hangs nicely on a shop or garage wall). When set up, the Workmate provides a sturdy work surface complete with horizontal and vertical vise settings, and its tough yet lightweight bamboo-panel surface can support up to 550 lbs. MORE...

*A Brand new submission to the world of tool storage!

The Veto Pro Pac XL. This heavy duty tool bag is weatherproof, extremely rugged, and holds up to 60 hand tools vertically for easy identification and accessibility. MORE...

Check back soon for more reviews, including the all-new Stanley FatMax™ toolbox.

Click on any image for more info.

—Gabriel Vandervort

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