Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Canvas tool roll for regular chisels

There are plenty of designs to choose from when it comes to tool rolls. Some are designed in a way that will have you insert the handle of the chisel in the pocket, and others are designed to keep the blade in the pocket instead.

I suppose that each method has got its advantages and drawbacks, but I feel most comfortable with the blades being protected individually, so that was the route I went.

Most chisels can be divided into categories such as sharp/dull, rusty/clean, broad/narrow etc. for my design there are two categories that are important: long/stubby + the width of the chisels.

Looking at the chisels I have provided with a new handle, I can see that either the length of the blade is around 4” or 5.5”. I don’t want the chisels to seat all the way into their pockets, and risking that they cut a hole, so all my pockets are made a bit longer than the blades.

I am making two rows of pockets, one which is for the stubby chisels, and one which is for the longer chisels. Both rows have the same number of pockets of graduating width.
The pockets are placed a small distance from the side of the tool roll, to enable the side to fold over the handles of the chisels, thus preventing them from accidentally falling out of the roll during transport. 

Since this tool roll is likely to see a lot more action than the roll for the mortise chisels, I decided to fold over the edges of the canvas, and make a seam all around the perimeter, to prevent the fabric from fraying.  It looks nice, but it takes some time to sew it all by hand.

I have tried to make my stitches a bit longer on this tool roll, due to the amount of sewing that I have to do. There is no need to make it any harder than it has to be.

The way the pockets are going to be placed, means that I can't fit a chisel in each of them, but I can alternate between a long and a stubby chisel, or stay with one type. 
Hopefully the idea will be OK, if not - well then someone else might be able to learn from the experience.

Outer shell and the deep pocket piece.

Outer shell with pocket pieces sewn in place.


  1. Nifty, I have an older home made roll for my carving chisels, which is overflowing, I could use a few more. Curious to see the final product. BTW iI put my gouges handles in so I can see their profiles in the roll, they cannot touch each others so I feel it is safe for them, not as much for me :-)

    1. Hi Robert

      My concern with the handle in pocket system is that the sides of the blades will touch when I close the roll. I am afraid that the corners will "bang" against each other. It could easily be that I am over cautious.
      This tool roll will give me a place to store all the extra chisels that I have, and protect them a bit. I don't think I am going to travel a lot with it, but who knows - maybe I'll become hooked on using a tool roll.

      I can see the idea of doing the other way though, especially when it comes to carving chisels, where the shape of the chisel to be taken out is fairly important.

  2. My carving gouge roll was made in 1998, i dont think that the edge touch when rolled, they are secured in place by the handles, with enough space in between the pockets. Nonetheless, having the cutting edges stand out leave them unprotected once unrolled, and it is easy to brush your hand on all these harp edges. Not a big problem, i always keep band-aids in my carving tool kit :-)

    Best regards, Bob

    1. My biggest worry with my own version, is that the chisels will eventually slice the pockets if I am not careful while inserting them.
      Keeping band-aids in the carving tool kit sounds like a good idea. I have to go inside the house to find band-aids, but then it is probably time for a cup of tea anyway :-)