Thursday, February 25, 2016

Kid Safe Storage Chest - Pocket Hole Version

A version of my outdoor storage chest that is still safe for kids.  This version is larger and doesn't require any dadoes to assemble.  That is because pocket holes handles the joinery duties on this project.

Lets get started.

OutDoor Storage Chest - Pocket Hole Version


3 - 1x3s
15 - 1x4s
1 - 2x3
Wood Glue
1-1/4" Brad Nails
Piano Hinge
Lid Support Hinge (x2)
1-1/4" Pocket Hole Screws

Cut List

8 Lid Slats @ 3.5"x53-7/8"
Lid Sill Plate @ 1.5"x50-7/8"
Exterior Sill Support Piece @ 3.5"x50-7/8"
Sill Support Fill Piece @ 2"x 47-7/8"
Interior Sill Support Piece @ 2"x47-7/8"
14 Bottom Slats @ 3.5"x25.75"
2 Bottom Slat Ledges @ 1"x47-7/8"
8 Front & Back Slats @ 3.5"x47-7/8"
8 Side Slats @ 3.5"x23.75"
4 Legs @ 1.5"x2.5"x18"

Here is the Project Build Video For a Smaller Version:  


Here is the Extended Bonus Footage Video For a Smaller Version: 

Step 1

Cut the legs to length.  Then drill 2 pocket holes on each side of all the slats.  A 1/4" spacer can be used to lay the slats on when it is time to attache the slats to the legs in order to give the required space between the edge of the leg and where the slats are to be attached.

Step 2

Once the sides are assembled.  It is time to attach the front and back slats to make our basic carcass for the storage chest.  Again lay the slats on a flat work surface and place a 1/4" spacer underneath them.  Attach with pocket hole screws the completed sides to the front and back slats.

Step 3

Flip the chest on its back and attach with glue and brads the two ledges for the bottom slats.

Step 4

After cutting the bottom slats to length you can lay them in place on the ledges that were attached in the previous step.  A line of wood glue can be used on the ledges before laying the slats in place.

The two pieces that will lay on the sides of the outdoor storage chest need to have a notch cut into them in order to clear the lip created by the legs.  Refer to the project build video above for more information.

Step 5

A filler piece is used to provide some bulk to the top back section of the chest.  This is to help the piece withstand the additional stresses of a rather heavy opening and closing lid.

Step 6

Attache the Exterior Sill Support Piece to the back of the unit.  Glue and brads or you can drive 1-1/2" screws from the back.

Step 7

Now we can attach the top sill piece.

Step 8

Since the lid is 1x4s edge glued together we need to add some support underneath it in order to prevent the glue joints from snapping.  Given the length of the lid slats I recommend no less than 4 cross pieces glued and tacked in place from underneath the storage chest lid.  You can refer to the project build video above for a visual representation.

Final Thoughts

I love storage.  I love organization and I love knowing my children are safe.  This outdoor storage chest gives me piece of mind in all three categories.

If you want a smaller version of this project that uses dadoes instead of pocket holes for joinery click the image below or click here.

Outdoor storage chest

Happy DIY'ing


  1. What are the lengths of the side slats?

  2. How would you suggest making storage box lid waterproof to store chair cushions from getting wet? thanks Jim

  3. Your product list says 3 - 1x3s, 15 - 1x4s & 1 - 2x3. Are they 8', 10' or 12' lengths?


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