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French Cleat Caddy // How To - Woodworking

French Cleat Caddy // How To - Woodworking

Get ready for another WoodShaped video build!

I picked up (2) 8 x 4 sheets of plywood from the big box store. One was a nice sheet of 3/4 inch maple and the other was the 1/4” white wood plywood. I also used a half sheet of oak plywood for the cleat partition. Knowing my dimensions ahead of time, I went ahead and had the sheets cut it the store. I measured my final dimensions and used the Makita Track saw to cut to length. I cut the (2) side panels as well as the bottom panel for the caddy base. 

The base construction is built with regular 2x4s that I’ve cut to length and milled on the jointer and planer. I put my Kreg K5 to good use during this build and here I’m preparing the base frame by adding pocket holes to create the rectangle bottom. 

I think Brad Rodriquez from fix this build that has met his match when it comes to being quick on the draw with the pin nailer.

I added more pocket holes to the side panels and started standing those up by securing them to the base. 

The caddy needs to be mobile so I picked up some casters rated at 250 pounds each, I would have liked to get a higher rating but these will do for now. My daughter decided she wanted to help and we love help in the shop.

And there’s always time for a little fun whenever you add wheels to something.

I started milling up the stock for the cleat partition and the top of the base frame. I secure the base frame trestles with two 1 1/4 inch screws for each corner and then I started measuring for the center point to begin constructing the clear partition. 

The partition is basically 2 pieces of 1/2 inch plywood sandwiched between the four partition posts. Which are just (2) 2x4s ripped down the middle. Some of the stock I used to build this was what I had on hand so there is a mix between 2x4 studs and a 2x4 yellow pine

Since i had marked my center point and the thickness of 1” for the plywood partitions, I was able to continue to mark my lines for the partition posts using my WoodPeckers 36” rule. 

Using my Kreg clamp I secured the posts by pre-drilling and then driving in 1 1/4” screws. I just used what I had in the shop.

Then I slipped in the 2 sheets of 1/2” plywood. These were actually the oak plywood. Like I said, I tried utilizing whatever I had and these were originally intended for a corn hole board but my caddy takes precendence. 

I completed the sandwiching by securing the partition with 2” wood screws up and down the posts.

Next I started preparing the top of the base by cutting the pieces to fit but not without mistakes. These completed the connection between the base and the cleat partition to give it it’s seamless look. I like how my mistake actually turned out to provide a better overall look to the caddy.

I secured the pieces with Titebond glue and with the pin nailer.

Considering I used some of what I had for a lot of this project, I ended up with a few different species of plywood. I wanted the caddy to pop a little more and drown out the shades of white so I decided to use some walnut for the boarders of both the caddy top and the later on for the tool trays.

I took the walnut over to the jointer of course to get it square and then began shaping it for the caddy base top. Once again i’m using glue and 1” pin nails. I flush trimmed the edges where necessary and then gave the trim a round over with the Makita cordless router.

Now it’s time to cut the french cleats. My cleats are 2 & 1/8” for the back face and just under 2 & 7/8” for the front face. I placed them 6 inches apart. The 6 inch measurement is from the bottom tip of one cleat to the bottom tip of another cleat going all the way up the partition. 

I used glue and pin nails on these but I also decided to secure them even more because the caddy partition is an isolated unit not attached to the wall. I used the FastCap flush mount drill bit and the HighPoint 1 and a quarter inch screws in black from WoodCraft. You can also use the FastCap screws but I just went with what I had on hand.

I like the look of the darker screws, I think it turned out nice. 

It was time to start on the drawers. I cut the plywood to the proper dimensions using the Miter saw and the Table saw and occasionally the Bandsaw for more awkward cuts. I assembled using the Kreg K5 Pocket holes and 3/4 inch screws. The fronts are the maple plywood and the sides bottom and back are the quarter inch whitewood plywood. 

I picked up whatever soft close slides I could find at the big box store and installed those on both drawers. I left enough space in between them so that I could view inside the drawers and that’s the same reason I decided against drawer fronts.

I used the Kreg Draw slide Jig to mount the inside piece of the slides and it was helpful to have a 2nd hand when installing these.

I’ll leave links in the description for all the tools and jigs I used.

I finished the build by creating what I call the  Cleat Caddy tool trays. The trays along with the caddy really meet the need and convenience of having your tools out of the way but also close by when you need them. The French Cleat Caddy is a game changer for woodworkers, mechanics or garage dwellers that need tools out of the way but accessible. 

► Tools and Supplies Used:

Makita Track Saw:

Milwaukee Drill/Driver M18 with One Key (1 left!):

Milwaukee 12" sliding miter saw:

Kreg K5 Pocket Hole Jig:

Kreg Right Angle Clamp:

Kreg Automaxx 3" Clamp:

Kreg Automaxx 6" Clamp:

Senco Finish Pro 21 Pinner:

Makita Cordless Router:

Big Horn Push Stick:

Fast Cap Flush Mount Drill bit:

HighPoint Screws 1 1/4:

Incra Rule 12":

Incra Rule 3":

GlueBot 16 oz Bottle:

WoodPeckers 36" Rule:


Gyokucho Flush Trim Saw:

KHI-Slide Drawer slide jib by Kreg:

The WoodShaped Workbench // Shop Organization - Woodworking

The WoodShaped Workbench // Shop Organization - Woodworking