Best Portable Toolbox – Reviews and Buying Guide 2018

PreviewNameAwardsPurchase

Stanley 023001W

Hand Carry

2pc Mini Tool Chest

Cabinet Storage

Keter New Masterloader

Rolling Toolbox

When your tools are your fortune and the garage your sanctuary, you need the best toolbox. No big difference exists between shopping for tools and shopping for their storage. The fun level is all the same. Everyone- from contractor to do-it- yourselfer – has a portable toolbox fit for his/her needs.

Whether you prefer something lightweight for the hand or the bigger steel chest, we do not see any reason you should keep your tools haphazardly with all the options available.

Why should you think portable? If you want to take the toolbox with you regularly, then you are better off owning this kind of toolbox. The best portable toolboxes are not only good for these regular trips to and from the site, but also good at keeping the tools secure. Perform some little search physically or online; the variety of models in this category is staggering.

In this guide, we will present a few models because we are following a certain criteria and outlining only the best. After showing you the features, pros, cons etc., we will leave the rest to you. You can get any of these toolboxes from discount retailers, department stores, warehouses and other major tools & home improvement stores near you.

You could also order your preferred best portable toolbox online, although you need to be careful when dealing with some of those online dealers.  We always advise anyone reading our reviews this: go through the entire guide before making your choice.

Okay, you may go with the old adage “What’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander” but remember that your best product may be the last one the list, as we have not followed any superiority criteria when listing.


Portable Toolbox Reviews


Hand Carry Portable Tool Boxes

 

1. Stanley 023001W 23-Inch Structural Foam Toolbox

Stanley 023001W

Large capacity-designed for maximum volume utility

STANLEY® is renowned for carefully designed tool storages.  We like the Stanley 023001 for its large capacity and organizational prowess. It offers many options for storing all sorts of tools. The manufacturer says that the tote tray accommodates large or many tools. If you need extra storage, you can always use the bottom compartment, which is ideal for power tools and other large/heavy equipment.  

The tote tray, being small, is only suitable for small parts and tools. The good thing is that you are able to connect the two pieces of the toolbox for easy transport. You can carry whatever you want, but the best way is to carry the heavier and larger stuff at the bottom.

STANLEY’s excellence is again shown in the versatility put in this product. Take for instance the V-groove track on the lid, which can make a strong support for lumber or pipe for cutting purposes. This also tells you the kind of construction we have here. Structural form is a durable material that shields the contents from the elements. Talking of protection, this product also features an all-round water seal that keeps out all the water, thus keeping your metal tools safe.

Unbelievably, this portable toolbox weighs in at just 7.04 pounds. Many users will love the size (22.6 x 12.1 x 10.5 inches), which is neither tool small to hold few tools nor too large to carry. Compact in design, the toolbox is sturdy enough to suit any jobsite or home-based applications.

We have seen toolboxes that are all good until you check the clasps. Some clasps loosen over time, some too soon. With the Stanley 023001, this will not happen, at least from what we saw and what we heard from users. The waterproof metal clasps are tight and durable, unless you use them roughly.

We cannot forget about the user-friendliness exhibited by the design. First, the Stanley 023001R FatMax 23-Inch Structural Foam Water-Resistant Toolbox comes with an ergonomic design. You can either use the handle or grab its ends. The handle itself is soft, but firm.

Perhaps, one drawback in this product is the small size of the tray. At only three quarters of the toolbox length, it means that you need to be careful how you arrange tools inside it. Otherwise, some will spill into the compartment below. Justified concerns have also emerged that the structural foam construction may not be strong enough to handle extremely heavy tools.

Save for these maneuverable issues, the Stanley 023001R FatMax 23-Inch Structural Foam Water-Resistant Toolbox shows why it is one of the best portable toolboxes available in the market today. We highly recommend it.


2. DEWALT DWST17806 TSTAK VI Deep Box

DEWALT DWST17806

Flexible platform allows different combinations

Everyone knows what Dewalt is capable of and what this company has been doing already in the power tools industry. Their outsourcing from China for manufacturing may have hampered their reputation a bit, but we are already seeing signs of a steady rise of this giant manufacturer towards glory reclamation. One of the products that show that consumers can still trust Dewalt for quality and professionalism is the portable DEWALT DWST17806 TSTAK VI Deep Box.  The portable toolbox is so good that a majority of reviewers on many platforms are giving it a 5-star rating.

One of the areas that impressed the most is the size. The toolbox measures at 17.3 x 11.9 x 13 in, which is somehow intimidating at first. However, it weighs in at only 5.9 pounds, something that will surprise you the first time you lift the box.

Although the DEWALT DWST17806 is available in different styles, it is not a surprise that the most popular among technicians and other professionals. It all boils down to the incredible flexibility the toolbox offers. You can store different sizes of tools thanks to the different compartments in this box. It also comes with a removable interior tray for even better organization.

On to construction, it is clear that the DEWALT DWST17806 TSTAK VI Deep Box is built to last. Unlike many lightweight toolboxes, this product comes with reliable hinges and latches.  Its design is compact and looks ideal for construction site kind of application.

Users who will consider the 44 lb. weight capacity as extremely low also exist, but you have to remember that the room for improvement remains. You can add more cases to accommodate your tools and parts. Even as you do this sort of adjustment, the long handle still stands strong and comfortable to the hand.

Dewalt has its work cut out if they are to make the DEWALT DWST17806 TSTAK VI Deep Box more durable. For example, the plastic body, the hinges and the locks will probably not stand for long.


3. Stanley 023001W 23-Inch Structural Foam Toolbox

Stanley 023001W

All round water seal for ultimate protection of equipment inside

One thing that is synonymous with toolboxes from Stanley: they all tend to focus on a wide range of aspects instead of specializing in one. This can sometimes work to the product’s disadvantage, as almost everyone in the market yearns for something unique.

The Stanley 023001W 23-Inch Structural Foam Toolbox is a shift from this approach. It has adopted a comfortable size-one that is neither too large nor too small. It measures 12.09 x 22.62 x 10.53 in, which is enough to carry even large power tools.

Yes, it is made of structural foam, but only minimally. The reason for this is to give the toolbox more muscle so it can carry heavier items. Moreover, the box is sizeable for maximum carrying capacity. Organization is on point with this portable toolbox. The bottom component allows for storage of sizeable material. Power tools are safe in this box, considering that it comes with a watertight seal.

The low cost is one thing that might keep off some buyers. Perhaps this is because some features are obviously off the mark. First, the plastic construction is still not good enough for some heavy items. The tote tray inside is another concern. It is only 3-quarters of the length, meaning that problems are likely to occur when you are trying to fill it to the brim. If you have no problem with some parts/tools spilling to the main component, then go ahead and buy this toolbox.

Like many other Stanley, toolboxes, you will not have any problems whatsoever carrying this product. The ergonomic design and soft-grip handle combine the best transportation experience ever. Have you wondered what the purpose of that V-groove track on the rid is? It adds the much-needed versatility to this best portable toolbox. Use it to cut or saw materials such as pipe and lumber.


4. Kennedy Manufacturing K20B All-Purpose Tool Box

Kennedy Manufacturing K20B

Lower Cavity storage for tools up to 20

If you are using tools on a regular basis, you may have noticed that arranging and transporting them can become tedious. The good thing is that this is something you can avoid if you invest in the right transportation solution.

Toolboxes come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, but over time, Kennedy toolboxes have proved to be among the best portable toolboxes in the market. Coming from the Kennedy Signature Series Hand Carry Toolboxes, the Kennedy Manufacturing K20B All-Purpose Tool Box, 20″, Brown Wrinkle is the hallmark of secure, spacious and strong storage of tools.

Like most Kennedy toolboxes, this product is designed with security, portability and organization in mind.

Do you remember those years when toolboxes were wooden? Well, those days are gone as evidenced by the new blend of materials being used. The Industrial Grade Material on this product is an assurance of longevity and practicality. Such material is weather resistant so it will last for years regardless of where you use it.

The Kennedy Manufacturing K20B All-Purpose Tool Box, 20″, Brown Wrinkle comes with a hinged cover and a Vinyl cushioned steel core top handle. This allows you to stock the box with whatever you want and carry it comfortably.

What is below this cover? This product is among the most stylish and versatile in this category. The Heavy-duty, plated locking hardware suggests good organization in the box even before you open it. Below the cover is a Lift-Out Tray with Socket Set Divider. As one of the larger toolboxes from Kennedy, this product also features a removable tote tray and a compartment below it.

Measuring 8.6 x 20.1 x 9.8 inches, the Kennedy Manufacturing K20B All-Purpose Tool Box, 20″, Brown Wrinkle will suit your storage needs because its compartments are spacious.

Everything on this product shows the class and quality that is synonymous with Kennedy Manufacturing for the last one century. The design of the latches and compartments indicate that the toolbox is meant to stand the test of time.


Tool Chest And Cabinet Storage

 

1. 2pc Mini Tool Chest & Cabinet Storage Box Rolling Garage Toolbox Organizer

2pc Mini Tool Chest

Powder Coated Finished Resists Rusts

To start this list is the 2pc Mini Tool Chest & Cabinet Storage Box Rolling Garage Toolbox Organizer. True to its appearance, this heavy-duty product would be a wonderful addition to any professional garage or workspace. While the attractive red finish does a lot to elicit attention, it is also crucial for keeping effects of elements at bay.

One of the elements that stand out when you look at this organizer is the wheels. Not many toolboxes come with this feature of maneuverability. With the four Fixed Casters, moving tools around the workspace has never been easier.

A closer look at the design reveals another strength that will impress a wide range of users. The 2pc Mini Tool Chest & Cabinet Storage Box Rolling Garage Toolbox Organizer features a removable tool chest and three drawers. These drawers come with Heavy Duty Ball Bearing Slides for quick and easy operation.

What users must also like is the heavy-duty steel construction. This product will definitely stand years of use, offering the most organized and safe storage of your tools. Look at the dimensions too! This toolbox is compact too.

Anyone who has ever owned a conventional garage toolbox knows the struggle of keeping rust at bay. The combination of oxygen and iron forms the flaky substance. Ways of countering this challenge are available, but you can tell it is tedious. Fortunately, the powder coat finish on the best portable toolbox saves you from that entire struggle.

For its price, the 2pc Mini Tool Chest & Cabinet Storage Box Rolling Garage Toolbox Organizer is an absolute bargain. Fast set up time, lightweight, long lasting and above, attractive. Already, the product is a hit in the market, with many users impressed by the solid build that suits harsh environments. What more could you ask for in the best portable toolbox at this price range.


2. Husky Drawer Heavy-Duty Tool Chest (52 in. 10-Drawer Mobile Workbench with Solid Wood Top, Black)

Husky Drawer Heavy-Duty Tool Chest

Full extension 75 lbs. rated ball bearing drawer slides with 2 banks of drawers measuring 15 in. and 30 in. wide, assorted depths of 3 in., 5 in. and 9.2 in.

Since 1924, Husky has been providing quality products so we expected the Husky Drawer Heavy-Duty Tool Chest (52 in. 10-Drawer Mobile Workbench with Solid Wood Top, Black) to be as good.

Those who have been following this brand associate it with quality and competitive prices. As the old has gone and the new has come, we can only say that Husky has upgraded its game. This Husky Drawer Heavy-Duty Tool Chest is excellent in a few years, as the following review demonstrates.

As you would expect with any other Husky toolbox, this product has a touch of class in as far as aesthetics are concerned. It features a shiny handled alongside that recognizable “Husky” logo.  The feeling created will definitely impress any mechanic or DIY user. The best part is that this touch of class comes at an affordable price.

The 21-Gauge steel construction on this Husky tool chest is the dream of any serious user. The manufacturer says that the product can support as much as 1,000 lbs. and we do not have any reason to dispute that. This capability all boils down to the design of the drawers. The taller bottom drawers rest on 75 lbs. rated ball bearing drawer slides. This is the secret behind their amazing stability and ability to carry more weight. While the top drawers are shorter, they also sit on similarly strong ball bearing drawer slides.

Another standout feature of the Husky Drawer Heavy-Duty Tool Chest (52 in. 10-Drawer Mobile Workbench with Solid Wood Top, Black) is the solid woodwork surface. This 1 in. thick component gives a place to work on even when space is limited. Do you need more organization and tool storage space? Never mind. This product can be paired with the 52 in. steel pegboard back wall to achieve this.

Probably you are wondering how a 52-in toolbox could make this list of the best portable toolbox when we do not even mention its mobility capability. No way could we ignore how easy it is to move this toolbox, even when it is loaded. Two components make this happen: the steel tubular side handle and the sizeable 5 in. x 2 in. casters.

While you enjoy these amazing features on the Husky Drawer Heavy-Duty Tool Chest (52 in. 10-Drawer Mobile Workbench with Solid Wood Top, Black), note that you have an even better offer if you can get the higher priced option under the same brand. This is the Husky Drawer Heavy-Duty Tool Chest (66 in. w 24 in. d 12-Drawer Heavy-Duty Mobile Workbench, Black).  Its ergonomic, functionality and construction scores make it a worthy member of this elite list.


3. 72″ Wide 15 Drawer Stainless Steel Anti-Fingerprint Tool Chest with Work Station

Thor Kitchen 72

100 pound rated drawer slide

When you are looking for a tool chest for the garage, you are going to encounter many limitations, mostly related to space and portability. Most garages can only afford narrow spaces, so you will only bump into a few tool chests that suit this application. This big product from Thor Kitchen is one such tool chests.

The HTC7215W measures 18 x 72 x 37.5 inches and weighs in at 280 pounds. It is built from all stainless steel, and is available in brown and silver. It features 15 high quality drawers for the ultimate storage experience for professionals and other users. It is not surprising that it comes with such amount of storage space given that it is a massive 72″ Wide. What is surprising is how they have managed to arrange these drawers expertly to slide easily. Remember that we are talking about a drawer that can carry up to 100 pounds. This is the best design for a garage where accommodating tools of different depths is necessary.

Perhaps, the most interesting part of the design is the workstation. We have seen some of the previously reviewed toolboxes with this feature, but this does not degrade it at all. This feature is ideal for users that lack a workbench. For the price of a portable toolbox, get rubber wood on top.

At its weight, this massive toolbox could be difficult to move. Well, that is not the case because at hand are strong and sturdy casters/wheels.

Warranty information is not given outright, but the product performs excellently. Assembly of the tool chest should be easy, as should be the removal of drawers in case you want to move easily. A few customers have reported separate issues, a more profound one being that of drawers sticking when opening. Overall, we rank this among the best portable toolboxes in terms of performance, durability and aesthetics.


Rolling Toolboxes

 

1. Keter New Masterloader Plastic Portable Rolling Organizer Tool Box Storage Solution

Keter New Masterloader

Tool divider inside for organizing tools

Here comes a product from one of the most renowned manufacturers in the world today. The Keter New Masterloader Plastic Portable Rolling Organizer Tool Box Storage Solution is a wonderful yet inexpensive product. You can store your hand tools, power tools and any other thing you need to carry without worry. It comes with compartmentalized bins to make storage of your different types of parts/tools efficient.

As you would guess, the bottom compartment is ideal for the heavier items, while the topmost bins hold the lighter tools. To access the bottom compartment, you need to slide the top ones to the side. These removable bins slide on wall bearings to allow for easy accessibility. Although this mechanism is easy, the security measures included for the sake of the contents of your box. The central locking mechanism plays role to satisfaction, and user feedback on this particular component proves it.

The handle and wheels on this portable toolbox make it one of the simplest to carry. Your items will not wobble inside as you carry them. Most important, your hands will be free from incessant impacts thanks to the ergonomic handle. Note that the toolbox comes with an extendable handle, a feature we do not see regularly.

Even more exciting is the fact that this box has a sturdy construction. Specifically, it is made from Polypropylene resin, a powerful resin that has indispensable industrial applications. It is resistant to fading and chemical damage. This allows you to use it in even toxic environments. If you are carrying heavy tools, this is the toolbox for you because it features a heavy-duty frame too.

Is organization one of your priorities? This is another top reason to consider buying this product from Keter. Many users have fallen in love with the tool divider; the reason being that tool organization is now effortless.


2. RIDGID Professional Tool Storage Cart and Organizer Stack, 3 Tool Box Combination

RIDGID Professional Tool Storage Cart

High impact resin and heavy duty construction

Everyone seems to love the RIDGID Professional Tool Storage Cart and Organizer Stack, and it is easy to understand why. It is easily one of the most cost-efficient toolboxes reviewed so far.

As all the other Ridgid Pro Tool Boxes, this combination is also sturdy, thus ideal for harsh working conditions. You can deduce this from the thick walls coupled with reinforced design. No matter how you much you fill this portable toolbox with items, it will not twist or bulge, as many in its class would do.

Handling is another positive you will note in this product. Each of the two smaller boxes has feet at the bottom to allow for neat stacking, during either storage or transportation.

The handle and wheels are the hallmarks of portability of this toolbox. Connectors and side handles are designed so that the boxes are not only stacked together neatly, but also do not wobble while not in use. When you need a set of hands to move the box around, the side handles come in handy. Even if you are dragging the toolbox on rough terrain, your items will not be jostled thanks to the highly reliable all terrain wheels.

Another impressive quality of the product is that despite its resin construction, its latches are metallic. Their latch area seems strengthened, so it is highly unlikely this design will be damaged fast.

A box of this nature is ideal for the construction sites and other places where dampness may be an issue. Not to worry because the toolbox features an integrated water seal that protects against dust and water damage.

So, can we attach any downside to this portable toolbox? Every tool no matter how good will disappoint some users. The omission of a top handle may have created space for extra items, but you will probably not see this inconvenience in other top brands.

In short, this is product offers great value for money and definitely one of the best portable toolboxes.


3. BOSTITCH BTST19802 Rolling Tool Box

BOSTITCH BTST19802

Can be separated into 2 parts: Bottom bin with drawer with ball bearing slides, Tool Box with drawer with ball bearing slide

Who said you can store your tools at home in a professional manner? That is the myth Bostitch seems intent on debunking with the manufacture of the BOSTITCH BTST19802 Rolling Tool Box. Well-designed both in functionality and appearance, this portable toolbox deserves to be on this prestigious list. It keeps your prized tools and parts in place, while allowing you to tow them to any destination easily.

We all know how handling a bulky rolling toolbox can be difficult. Once you have put all the items inside, the weight takes a toll on you. You can imagine yourself dragging a gigantic box across the corridor. You do not want to do that, especially under the scorching sun. We love the BOSTITCH BTST19802 Rolling Tool Box because it was designed to eliminate such a scenario.

In line with this, the most striking feature of this storage is that you can separate it into two parts. You can put your larger tools in the bottom compartment, which is larger. The top compartment is designed for lighter smaller tools. Remember that both bins come with ball bearing slides for smooth operation. Storage space is also nice, considering that the toolbox’s bottom bin has two drawers. There you go!  Your organizational needs are in place.

For a toolbox as user friendly and simplistic as this, the storage options left for the user can be amazing. Some users have already discovered the flexibility offered and are already making good use of it. Some reviewers have confessed to having used the BOSTITCH BTST19802 Rolling Tool Box to carry their music instruments, hairdressing equipment and so on. What is coming out clearly is that the options beyond storage of saws and drills are limitless with this nicely designed portable toolbox. This proves that this is not your standard portable toolbox. Its scope is simply amazing.

How well does the toolbox move? The 7-Inch Full Rubber Wheels make this product one of the easiest to transport. However, we still have reservations about these wheels surviving extended use in harsh working environments. They simply are not robust enough. Nevertheless, since most home uses are relatively soft, we do not see any reason why the wheels should not last long enough for the average homeowner.

We recommend this portable toolbox if you have portability and effective storage of your items in mind.


How to Choose the Best Portable Tool Box

Whether you visit amazon or any other informational page as you search for the best portable toolbox, the story is the same everywhere: the number of products available is overwhelming.  The shapes and sizes vary, but no need to worry.

You just need to grasp the categories and then go for the best in your category of choice.  As you do so, always remember the following guidelines.

Portability

Portability presents a myriad of benefits to any power tool. If you know you will be going to different projects, then you need a portable toolbox. Portability one side, the available models present different features and capabilities, so you need to take some time here too. For worksite applications, you need a toolbox that has the appropriate security features and construction.

Even if it were a chest, sometimes you would want to want to take it to a different location within the shortest time possible. With modern wheels, moving even the biggest chests is easy. Make sure you get high quality wheels that will withstand roughness of the industry for many years.

Construction

Portable toolboxes can be constructed from many materials, but the most common are metal and plastic. They may come with drawers, which are usually removable for ease of access. Back to materials, portable toolboxes can be categorized according to their design materials. This is where we have stainless steel, plastic, steel and aluminum varieties.

If you are looking for the most durable portable toolbox, go for an aluminum one. These are also easy to maintain. For even more lighter and corrosion resistance, you may want to purchase a stainless steel toolbox. You will find these products in many applications including race environments and commercial garages. Because of their anti-corrosive and clean qualities, these boxes tend to be costlier.

Also popular in the market are plastic portable toolboxes. Apart from non-corrosiveness, plastic also features light weightiness and costs less. Even with its poor durability, this material suits hot environments where rise in temperatures may affect handling in metals. Furthermore, the material is extremely easy to clean and fits recreational applications. Finally, we have aluminum toolboxes. These are highly regarded for their low cost, low weight and corrosion resistance.

Storage Capacity

For a portable toolbox, size matters. Access the space and number of tools in your garage. You need a toolbox that will not only offer enough storage for your tools, but also leave enough space for you to maneuver and expand in future.

Modern toolboxes are coming with compartments to make organization of your tools and parts easy. Most people like to have as many compartments as possible. You want a toolbox that allows you to access tools and parts quickly whenever you need them. Higher end portable toolboxes will even feature sliding compartments that ensure more storage without necessary making the product bulky. Lower priority tools are often stored in the lower compartments while the more important tools are placed on top.

Do not give up yet if you cannot find a standard portable toolbox that is big enough for your stock of items. The message is that time has come for you to graduate to bigger portable toolboxes. Are you for real? Yes, the market is awash with a whole blend of portable chests and cabinets. If you are tired of the minimal space in the conventional portable toolbox, why not consider a few options, starting with tool cabinets.

Tool cabinets are extremely large and are the surest sign you have decided to go big. Thinking portable, the best choice would be footlockers with wheels. Which bells and whistles do you want in the best portable toolbox? The options available for tool cabinets-shelves, hooks, wide doors, foldout workbench etc.-will simply overwhelm you.  Many models come with casters, so your transportation concerns are sorted.

Tool chests are also significantly sizeable and offer a lot of storage space. Many models are now coming with several compartments, the smaller ones for smaller tools and the bigger one for larger tools/parts.

Additional Features

People are increasingly looking out for additional features when buying products. The reason is that most users want equipment that can do several things. Portable toolbox may be unique in design and shape, but come with different features. No toolbox brand is a replica of the other. While manufacturers will add features in a bid to woo buyers, some of these features are essential.

The locking system is one feature you should pay close attention to before buying a toolbox. The best portable toolboxes come with an auto-locking system, but locking tab can be good enough. Combining a locking tab with a good padlock is often enough. This is important not only for keeping unwanted hands from your tools, but also for protecting kids from dangerous tools.

If you look closely at many rolling toolboxes, you will notice nicely shaped handles that make movement effortless and enjoyable. Since not all portable toolboxes in this category feature this, check for it the next time you are buying.

Handles, alongside hinges, are essential for the proper function of the best portable toolbox. While you could lift the box with both hands, the handle remains the most crucial transportation component.  A flimsy or poorly designed handle will easily collapse the moment you attempt to carry heavy items. Look for a comfortable and sturdy handle.

Sure, some instances necessitate the use of a lock, but you can be sure a time will come when you need to secure the contents of your portable toolbox.


Conclusion

Projects that matter to you demand the best attention. When it comes to choosing the best portable toolbox for such projects, you cannot afford to go about it haphazardly. All portable toolboxes are incredible, providing the user with flexibility and transportation opportunities. However, not all the products are designed equal. Taking time to choose your best suit is always beneficial.

To come up with this list of the best portable toolboxes, we conducted a thorough search, perusing products from top manufacturers. This enabled us to establish what makes a good portable toolbox including features such as weight, size, carrying capacity and user friendliness. In the course of this resource, we visited Amazon.com, forums, and most importantly, parent websites.

As you go through this guide and do your own search, one thing you will note is that every component in a portable toolbox matters. Something as tiny as a hinge screw can affect performance. Usually, notable differences between what you would consider home-based toolboxes and industrial ones can be your best guide. Sometimes, telling where best to use the toolbox is not easy.   For us, the Stanley 023001W 23-Inch Structural Foam Toolbox comes out tops because of its affordability, yet it offers versatility and reliability like no other.

 

 

 

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