My Flip Top Tool Stand has been a huge game changer for me ever since I build it back in 2015. Today I’m going to show you the updates I made to it. You can think of it as the Flip Top Tool Stand 2.0. After using my original flip top for years I knew there were a few small changes I wanted to make and some of them you can incorporate to finished builds.
If you want to see how I made the Flip Top Tool Stand 2.0 from start to finish, you should check out my full build video. I go over everything there in detail. And if you’re looking for a blog post that goes over the full building process, check out the original flip top tool stand for those details.
Finally, if you’ve already made your own flip top tool cart, make sure to check out #6 and #7 below. You can easily retrofit your flip top with these simple ideas.
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Flip Top Tool Stand Updates
- Larger Tool Capacity
- Drilling Sides One at a Time
- Use Jigsaw to Cut Slots
- Shorter Drawer Sides
- Plywood Bracing for Easier Tool Installation
- Epoxy Fender Washers to Knobs
- Magnets to Hold Knobs During Rotation
- Adding Tool Cord Wraps
1. Larger Tool Capacity
After receiving feedback about the size of the flip top tool stand, I decided to make the newer version slightly larger. I made the tool stand wider and taller which gives it a tool capacity of 27-1/2” x 21-1/8” vs. 27″ x ~20-1/2″ before. The extra width was specifically to accommodate the DeWalt 735 (which is just wider than 27″) and Kreg Foreman. And the extra height was for the RIDGID R4331 (which is 21″ tall). So you should have the space needed for most if not all benchtop planers without needing to modify the plans. But still measure to be sure!
Get the updated plans for step by step instructions to help you build your own Flip Top Tool Cart.
2. Drilling Sides One at a Time
The secret sauce of the cart is the metal tube that runs through the top and out both sides. This supports the tools and let’s them spin freely. I made a drilling guide on the drill press to help me keep everything square and true when I drilled the holes for the steel tube by hand.
In the original plan and during my second build I recommended and tried drilling both sides at the same time. I realized this is not the best method because if you go off course then gets even worse at the end of the second piece.
Moral of the story is don’t double stack your sides because it just doubles your error. Measuring and drilling one side at a time will get you close enough and you can always finesse the holes if needed during assembly.
3. Use Jigsaw to Cut Slots
I decided to make the slots for the locking hardware on the sides differently than in the past. On the previous build I did this with a router and a straight bit. But this time I decided to use a small forstner bit to establish the ends of the slots.
Next I traced the path I would follow with the jigsaw to cut out the slot.
Then I removed the rest with the jigsaw.
Either way works fine and it just depends on what tools you have on hand. You could also use a simple handsaw to make these cuts as well. And if the slots aren’t perfect they can be cleaned up with a file.
4. Shorter Drawer Sides
I decided to slightly shorten the height of the sides of the bottom drawer to allow for easier installation. The previous sides were 4″ tall giving only a 1/4″ of wiggle room, but this makes it a lot easier to have a little room to work with.
5. Plywood Bracing for Easier Tool Installation
In my previous build I cut more 1×2 pieces and lined them up exactly where my tools mounting holes were to give the lag screws some extra bite. But I found a little easier and future proof method here.
Instead of using 1×2’s I cut some plywood scraps to fit in the openings. I just brad nailed them in place since they’ll be sandwiched in there. They cover a much larger area to fit different tools and not worry about exact placement of braces.
6. Epoxy Fender Washers to Knobs
One nuisance from the first version of the flip top tool stand had to do with the fender washers. They tended to float around and had to be moved outward at times to reengage the locks.
To fix this issue I decided to integrate the washer and the knob into one part. I filed down the knobs to get a flat surface to connect the washer.
Then I scuffed up the fender washers.
Finally I epoxied them right to the knob.
Just be careful not to get epoxy in the threads.
After clamping it and letting it cure it worked perfectly. No more floating washers to worry about!
7. Magnets to Hold Knobs During Rotation
Another small annoyance from the first flip top workstation related to the bolts. When flipping the top the bolts would sometimes flop out and catch on the sides. This isn’t a major issue, but it is annoying.
The idea for fixing the second issue didn’t come to me until I had mounted the tools. As I was flipping my brand new tool cart, the bolts turned outward and I had to push them back in. To prevent this from happening in the future, I grabbed some small neodymium magnets for the job. These are about 5/16” round by ⅛ thick. I drilled a recess for the magnets right next to the slot for the eyebolt.
Then I scuffed up the magnets and put epoxy in the hole I just drilled.
Then I placed the magnets in the epoxy to set them in the wood.
These magnets are really small but it was just enough to keep the bolts in place when flipping the top over.
8. Adding Tool Cord Wraps
The last creature comfort I added was some tool cord wraps. My previous planer had onboard storage for the cord so I didn’t really need to worry about it. But the new JET planer doesn’t, so I came up with a quick fix.
I used a 2-1/2″ pocket screw with some 1/4″ tubing and a 1/4″ fender washer for the posts.
The washer is a great stop for the cords and the tube protects the cord from the threads and also holds the washer in place.
You could also easily make wraps from scraps of wood that you shape into a “L” to hold the cords.
And those are the updates I made to my Flip Top Tool Stand! Those small changes have made the tool stand even more functional which I’m loving. Be sure to check out the rest of my Shop Projects for more more great builds!
JET Tools provided me with product and/or monetary compensation as a sponsor of this build. All opinions are my own and are not filtered by the sponsor.