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A big box store

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You know those plastic storage boxes that nearly all tools come in? You probably have several; I do and they’re getting out of hand.

It’s that time when I begin the winter-spring swap. As the days get longer and the chances of snow decrease, it’s time to take winter-only stuff like snow shovels, big bags of salt, skis, sleds and other cold-weather gear and stow them for the season. To make storage room for all that I need to get the warm-weather stuff – rakes, hoses, lawn and hedge trimmers, etc. – back out. But in going up and down from the attic it’s clear that one thing, or rather one category of thing, stays in storage year round: those plastic storage boxes my tools came in.

A few tools I don’t use often, like my recip saw, stay in their plastic cases. But that’s rare; just about all my other tools were removed from their cases they day I brought them home, and the storage cases stored. The fact is, I never use those things. But they’re way too nice to toss out, and you never know when you might actually need to store a tool in one. As a result, my attic and one shelf in my shop is cluttered with brand new, unused plastic storage cases. The only thing stored in them is air and they’re taking up a lot of room.

So my idea is this: I get all my plastic storage cases together, and you get all yours together. Then we find a central location somewhere and offer them for sale. We start our own big box store, and all we sell is those boxes! I mean, I don’t use them and I’m guessing a lot of you don’t use them, but somebody must. Why else would the toolmakers crank them out by the zillions and tout their value so much?

The way I figure it, our biggest customers won’t be woodworkers, because most woodworkers use their tools way too much to bother with those boxes. I’m thinking ultra heavy-duty, designer purses and handbags. Our wives will love them so much, they won’t even complain anymore when we go tool shopping. I can hear it now:

“Hey, look, honey! I bought you this great Milwaukee-red carryall, and it came with a free drill!”

Till next time,


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