Month: April 2018

Is your truck toolbox rusty or just plain dull looking? Well in that case it could use a new paint job, and it is not as as hard as it seems. The following instructions are for an aluminum truck toolbox, but you can use the same steps for other types of truck toolboxes.

Materials You’ll Need

  • Paint
  • Truck toolbox
  • Cloth for cleaning the toolbox
  • Sandpaper 80 grit
  • Smoother sandpaper
  • Degreasing cleaner
  • Rubbing alcohol and cloth
  • Etch primer

Step 1 Clean the toolbox

Clean the toolbox and remove the grease if there is any. Whether it is aluminum or any other material, it is important to clean the surface before applying any paint.

Step 2 Sand the surface

Use the 80 grit sandpaper on the toolbox. If you want a shiny finish, sand the surface again but this time with a finer sandpaper. Use progressively finer sandpaper to make the surface look good.

Step 3 Use a degreasing cleaner

If you have not yet done already, use a degreasing cleaner. Check the toolbox surface for any article remnants. Use a tack cloth to get rid of these particles. Get rid of all the dust and metal particles since they speed up rust and corrosion.

Keep repeating the process until the surface is dry. When it’s dry, dip a clean piece of cloth in rubbing alcohol and wipe the toolbox surface. Allow the alcohol to dry.

Step 4 Apply etch primer

Shake the can of etch primer for a couple of minutes. Apply an even coat on the toolbox surface. Wait for 5 minutes and spray another coat. Allow the etch primer to settle for 20 minutes.

Step 5 Paint the toolbox

Apply all weather or high heat paint on the toolbox. Apply light coating evenly. Follow the instructions on the spray can or whatever paint you’re using.

Let each coat settle for a few minutes before applying the next layer. Refer to the instructions on how long to wait before you can apply the next coat.

Apply as many coats as you want. The more coats you apply, the more protection your toolbox gets, but the longer it will take to dry.

After the paint dries, step back and admire your handywork.

Tips and warnings:

  1. Use only high quality paint
  2. Wear protective clothing when painting
  3. Paint only in a well ventilated location
  4. Apply the paint evenly so it comes out looking fine
  5. Use a steel wool pad to buff the surface
  6. Paint and spray are applied in a sweeping manner
  7. Paint in clear sunny weather for faster drying times


Painting a toolbox should not take long, and with the right approach you will have that toolbox ready in no time. Even if you don’t have a lot of experience with painting, the steps outlined above will help give that toolbox a shiny new look, aluminum or otherwise.

Building a tool chest does not have to be difficult. Just get the following tools and materials and you’ll be ready.

Tools and Materials:

  • Staples, nails, screws
  • Four swivel casters
  • 3.75 sheets plywood
  • 3 x 4” MDF
  • Table saw
  • 90 degree clamps
  • Sketch plan for chest design and measurements

Step 1 Create the chest case

Saw the pieces according to the length you want. A table saw is most suited for this job. You can also use a circular saw or a jig saw if you have a straight edge clamp. A router is another option.

Set down the largest chest side and put another piece perpendicular to it. You can use a clamp to keep the piece in position.

Secure the pieces with staples, screws or nails. Add as many nails and screws to fortify the chest. Once your tool chest is complete you can install swivel casters. The casters are optional however.

Step 2 Make the chest drawers

Get the table saw and cut out 4 sides and a drawer base. Follow the measurements in your blueprint to make sure they fit in your tool chest.

The next step is to set one of the 4 sides on the base piece. Use a 90 degree clamp to fasten the ends.

Use nails, screws or nails to secure the drawer. Using the clamp, secure the opposite side and side it in.

The last step is to connect the slide in the drawer and secure it.

Step 3 Install the Drawer Slides

This is the final step, but you need to be careful as there is little room for mistakes. Again, follow your sketch or blueprint for measurements. Use that guide as you cut the pieces.

Congratulations, you now have a fully working tool chest. If you want you can paint it or add a veneer. If the chest has multiple deep drawers, you can put wood dividers in it and create sections.

Tips and Warnings:

  1. Before making a tool chest, prepare a blueprint with the chest’s design and specs
  2. Buy more materials than you’ll need for this project, just in case you make a mistake
  3. Be careful when cutting and double check the measurements
  4. Wear safety goggles, gloves and steel toe boots or shoes
  5. Work in a well ventilated environment
  6. Clean up your work place afterward
  7. If you want to add a lid, use the same steps as above but add a hinge
  8. You can use different types of wood, but we chose MDF here as it is durable and affordable
  9. Be patient when cutting
  10. Don’t work in a poorly lit environment

Final Reminders:

That is all there is to creating a tool chest. It is not as difficult to do as it seems as long as you have the right tools and materials. The important thing to remember is to follow your plans and stick to them.