Full disclosure: I was given this tool box setup by the local Rigid rep with the understanding that I would write an unbiased review.
I've been using the Rigid Professional Tool Storage System for almost five months now. I started looking for a mobile, multi-box system when working several commercial jobs last winter. Having all your popular tools in a transportable, well-organized unit is essential if you are going to travel from jobsite to jobsite, or are not able to secure your tools overnight and need to pack them up each day. It also lessens the chance of accidentally getting your expensive items from "co-mingling" with other tradesmen on the job!
The Dewalt "Tough" line of cases had piqued my interest when I would walk into my local Home Depot. Despite living up to their tough construction, two things bothered me about the Dewalt system: lack of usable space, and a high price tag. It also required a very expensive dolly type of carrier that made the system stackable and mobile, which interestingly wasn't available in any of our dozens of local Home Depot stores. This spring, I notice that Rigid had come out with a similar system, and was much more reasonably priced...like HALF the price of the Dewalt.
Before talking to my local Rigid rep, I had done an extensive in-store inspection of the locking system, and was pretty impressed with the initial evaluation. The system includes several different sized "boxes", each that can be used by themselves, or stacked on top of a base unit that has wheels and a retractable handle (think hard-case suitcase). The construction is hard plastic, with well fitting, secure latches. Each unit can lock onto the one under or on top of it through side latches. The Rigid system also includes a hard foam liner around the perimeter of the lids that provides a waterproof seal in case your boxes get caught in an errant thunderstorm in the back of your truck - a big bonus.
There are three different sized units. There is a 5 inch deep, three compartment unit that resembles a beefy briefcase, perfect for holding screws and other fasteners, or a drill/driver, batteries, and accessories (which I use it for). A middle sized unit is perfect for bigger tools that you use on a regular basis, like hammers, torpedo levels, drills, screwdrivers, etc. The base unit resembles a regular tool box with a removable top "shelf" for tape measures, pencils, and other go-to tools, with a deep base for heavier, bulkier tools like circular saws, jigsaws, mallets, and other like tools. The retractable handle has shown no play, and feels solid even when the boxes are loaded with tools.
Overall, I'm totally impressed with the utility of the entire system. Craftsmanship is second to none, and the portability parts have proven to be truly professional grade. The base and middle boxes have good layout and ample room for all but the biggest tools. The smallest of the units should be my favorite, as it has versatility to be used alone, but I just find the layout a little constricting. I use a similar locking box system for carrying all my screws, nails and other fasteners, so I have removed the individual boxes that come with this top unit in hopes of using it for something else. It works great if I'm doing small jobs, and only need my 12volt drills and drivers. It will hold a charger, extra batteries, and three different drivers. The problem comes when i want to use my more powerful 18volt drills. The compartment is just too small to hold the bulkier, more powerful drills. This leaves me looking for something to put in it, at times. With this being my only real gripe, I can still highly recommend the Rigid system.
As mentioned before, the real area the Rigid system shines is in value. All three components are sold separately, and can be had for less than $150 total. The dolly for the Dewalt system costs $199 alone! While I haven't used the Dewalt on the job, thorough in-store inspection shows that while it has a few "neat" features, none of those features come close to justifying the price. While I've never owned a Rigid tool before, you can bet I'll be keeping my eye on the company as they show a true interest in attracting the professional craftsman.