Great question Tim -
I am in a current search and major organizing effort as well. I
picked up some small wooden drawer units at Costco last year. The
only problem is they go out of stock never to be found again. Perhaps
I could inquire at Costco as to the source. They were not too bad -
the drawers open and close really well. They may be smaller than what
you would like - the interior of the drawers is 6 1/2" x 7 3/4" x 1
7/8" tall - and there are 8 drawers in each unit. What I may do - but
haven’t gotten to it yet - is make a low grid divider out of wood - to
fit into those existing drawers. I still haven’t found the plastic
boxes to hold the findings - so, am waiting for that step - to
customize the dividers.
Perhaps the carpenter you approached could make just the divider
section to fit whatever drawer set up you can find - and keep cost
down. (Something like the old wooden soda bottle crate dividers.) My
mentor has a wonderful drawer set up - in one of his bench drawers -
that has separations to hold single small clear square boxes with
findings. I’m sure that he designed and built his benches. He also
has a larger metal one used by machinists probably - with relatively
small separations - for all the castings of findings and other
findings. What is good about that one is there are slots for labeling
the front of the drawers and nice drawer pulls - very well built.
Reminds me of the old card catalog files at the library. Not sure if
those storage units are still available - haven’t found a source yet.
I have been looking at antique options - like the flat drawers to
hold metal type set letters etc. I love the wooden drawers that were
created to hold parts in workshops in the olden days - even for
medical and herbal purposes.
Perhaps we could approach a woodworker/cabinet maker to design
something that could be multiplied for jewelers and keep cost down?
But that would take time. We are a big network of resources here -
maybe it exists already! What do watchmakers use? I also haven’t found
a solution yet - at least not in a hardware store. The plastic ones
don’t do it for me either.
Does anyone know of a supplier for small clear square plastic boxes -
about 1" square - that could be used to hold and identify the
findings? The ones I’m trying to locate are sometimes used in
production situations for distribution of tie tacs etc. I was getting
a larger version - recycled from a hospital - from my sister-in-law
who is a surgical nurse. (I remember the previous string on Orchid a
few year ago!)
I’m with you Tim, very interested in any other ideas out there on
storing the findings? Now that I’m diversifying to more gold (and
perhaps platinum down the line) - it is essential to have a good
system. Thanks again for the question. Aloha, Cynthia