Gun cleaning is an integral part of gun safety use as well as gun longevity. Depending on the size of the gun, the number of parts for a gun cleaning kit can number 10 or more and become quite cumbersome. Most kits come with a carrying case; if not, a wooden case may be the most effective "do-it-yourself" solution to keeping your kit secure and organised.
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Things you need
- Tape measure
- Framing square
- Table saw
- 1/2-inch particle board sheet
- 1/2-inch or 3/8-inch hardwood sheet
- Chop saw
- Wood clamps
- Wood glue
- Pneumatic finish nail gun
- Air compressor
- 2 brass hinges
- Drill gun
- 1/16-inch drill bit
- Wood stain
- Paint brush
Establish the dimensions of your gun kit using the tape measure, based on the length and height of the tools. Most gun cleaning elements are thin and long, so if your gun is a shotgun or rifle, your box will be a shallow rectangle. If you are building a box for a hand gun, a deep, square box will be more practical.
Place the framing square on all four corners of the particle board sheet until you find the corner that is closest to "square." As your framing square hugs the corner, do you see any light or space between the square's edge and the wood? If not, you've found a square corner.
Draw a square/rectangle to the dimensions of your tool kit, using the corner you identified in Step 2. If all corners are not square, create your own square/rectangle within the particle board using the framing square as an outline.
Cut out the square/rectangle using the table saw. This will form the base of your box.
Cut the hardwood pieces to the proper length using the table saw and particle board base as your measurement guide. Generally, the interior depth of your box should be no less than three inches. This will allow the kit and rags to fit comfortably. With that in mind, use the chop saw to cut the width of each hardwood section, to be no less than three inches.
Set the chop saw 45 degrees to the right and make a cut down the left side of each piece of the sidewall sections (hardwood). Make sure you do not shorten the outside edge of the piece, as your goal is to only remove the inside corner. Then set the chop saw 45 degrees to the left and repeat this process on the right side of each side wall section.
This will allow each piece to match together perfectly with crisp corners, as opposed to blunt ends.
Run a bead of wood glue along the bottom and inside corners of the sidewalls, then secure them to the base using the wood clamps. Ensure that the sidewalls are both vertically and horizontally square while the glue is still supple.
Nail through the base and into the sidewalls at three- to four-inch intervals using the finish nail gun. Nail the corners together with at least two nails, ensuring that the nails do not breach the surface of the wood. Allow the box to set with clamps in place for at least eight hours while the glue hardens. This completes the lower section of your gun cleaning kit box.
Cut out the lid of the box, using the same measurements as the box's base. Cut the lid from a hardwood, not particle board, as it is a moving piece that needs lateral and vertical load strength.
Drill pilot holes for the hinges after pencilling in the location of the holes by placing the hinges in a mock-up position on the interior of the lid. The hinge mechanism should rest on the exterior of the box, while the hinge plates rest on the top of the sidewalls and bottom of the lid, respectively. Failure to mount in this fashion will result in a lid that does not have a full range of motion.
Screw the hinges into place.
Paint the exterior and interior of the box in two to three coats of wood stain, which protects the wood and improves its durability.
Tips and warnings
- Using a mitre saw, you can bevel the top edge of the lid to add a more stylised look to the box.
- Always use proper safety gear around saws, including eye protection, ear protection and the safety guards provided by the saw manufacturer.
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