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How to make a Carousel tool holder – Keith Barnes

Having time on my hands I thought it would be a good opportunity to make a mobile tool rack for my turning chisels and other items I use when working at the lathe. I have limited space in my workshop to hang or store tools.

I can remember noticing one being used when visiting a member’s workshops when writing up “What’s in my Shed” for a previous addition of “Your Turn”.

The finish size of my tool rack is 740mm (29”) high.

It is on wheels so can be moved very easily around the workshop or placed near to your lathe to move when required.

Many variations can be made to this project. One of them could be a small cupboard on wheels with an overhanging top shelf, this will achieve the same and give you extra storage space for other items inside.

I can hear older members saying this is not a new idea it has been around for years. It has but new member may not have seen or heard of it before. As they say “What Goes Around Comes Around”


You will need the following materials for this project.

All of these materials can be purchased from your local D.I.Y. shop or hardware store.

  1. 1 sheet of 19mm x 48”x 24” Plywood, chipboard or similar sheet material.
  2. 560mm x 100mm plastic soil pipe or size as required.
  3. 4 x 75 / 100mm swivel casters wheels. It helps to have 2 fitted with locking levers
  4. 16 x 30mm x 6mm nuts, bolts and steel washers to secure castors.
  5. Approximately 10 x 42 x 4 and 10 of 50 x 4 countersunk screws.
  6. 3 blocks of wood approximately 150mm sq. x 50mm.
  7. Wood glue.
  8. 2 x handles.

Cut the plywood into 2 round pieces. The first 560mm in diameter the second 460mm in diameter or to suit your requirements, or as required.

You now need to turn 2 of the blocks of wood to give a snug fit to suit the inside of the plastic pipe. Turn the other block 150 mm in diameter to form a spacer as per the picture. This will give extra support strength to the centre pipe.

Glue and screw one small block and the large block together.

Marking the centre of the 560mm base ply, lining up the centres, screw and glue the double blocks to the plywood.

Slid the 100mm plastic pipe over the round plate. Fixing it around its base with the c/s screws.

Screw and glue the other small round block of wood to the centre of the 460mm ply (top)shelf.

Continuing with the top shelf drill a series of small (2mm) pilot holes 50mm in from the edge, spaced evenly around the ply.

Using the pilot holes as a guide drill 25mm holes, only drill halfway through the plywood to prevent splintering.

Turn the shelf over and continue drilling the holes through the ply. These holes will be for holding your turning tools.

Drill extra holes if you have more tools than holes.

When completed clean up the edges of the holes with abrasive paper.

Drill smaller holes to take screwdrivers and other small tools.

At the other end of the 100 mm plastic pipe insert the second turned block and the top shelf secure with c/s screws.

To the underside of the 600mm ply base, evenly space and fix the 4 castor wheels, placing as close to the edge as possible. This will help to pervert any tipping when the carousel is being moved.

Secure them using the 6mm x 30mm bolts, washers and nuts. If you can, use mushroom headed bolts.

Fit the handles to pull the tool holder as pushing may cause it to tip over.

Your Carousel Tool holder is now ready to use.

To customise your Carousel Tool Holder.

  • Flush in a small steel metal plate into the top shelf (25mm square) or a large steel washer to take a magnet tray. This can hold your small metal accessories.
  • Secure a tin box complete with hinged lid again to the top shelf to give you extra storage space for screws etc.
  • Hooks and clips can be fitted to the rim of the shelf to hold small hanging items.
  • If required a centre shelf can be fitted for extra storage space.

Have fun!

Keith Barnes

Any issues, please use our email to contact us and we will be more than happy to help.