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Forum topic by Mosquito posted 09-21-2015 04:42 PM 2948 views 2 times favorited 70 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Mosquito

8566 posts in 1893 days


09-21-2015 04:42 PM

Topic tags/keywords: shop organization shop storage storage workshop

What are some of the shop storage/organizing solutions you’ve found most useful in your shop?

As my wife and I close on our new house this week, I’m looking forward to moving into a new shop space (an actual garage/shop space, for those who know my back story, I’m excited for that).

Anyway, I like to think about a lot of things, and plan a lot of things out. That said, I know (from experience) that the shop is an ever-evolving space throughout time, as things change, get added, removed etc; just looking for some ideas to gather together and see what ideas I can come up with.

I had originally meant for this to be less about my situation, and more just a general “idea pot” for anyone to pull from, but in my case, some of the particulars are as follows:

New shop is a free-standing 24×30 garage, with 10’ ceilings. It’ll need insulating, more wiring and more lighting, so that’ll be done first, but was thinking about doing horizontal drywall on the bottom (4’) and a row of plywood (so 4’ to 8’ on the wall), and another 2’ of drywall above that to finish off the wall. I figured this would give me a strip of plywood all around the shop that I could use to put stuff anywhere (not being reliant on studs for everything).

I don’t have many power tools at the moment, but that’s partially due to space, so I hope to get a few stationary tools to help with stock prep (I’ll be getting my grandpa’s old RAS and Planer out of storage once I get settled in).

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN - http://www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods - http://www.TheModsquito.com


70 replies so far

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

16260 posts in 3819 days


#1 posted 09-21-2015 04:53 PM

Unless your new shop space is absolutely huge, I highly recommend using mobile bases and rolling carts wherever possible. My shop is in 1/2 of a 2-car garage, and I couldn’t operate without the ability to push things I’m not using out of the way.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View JayT's profile

JayT

5191 posts in 1812 days


#2 posted 09-21-2015 05:03 PM

Two words: French cleats.

Strong, versatlie and lets you maximize the space and flexibility of your wall space.

-- In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock. Thomas Jefferson

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

2380 posts in 1773 days


#3 posted 09-21-2015 05:04 PM

I currently have a tool cabinet I built (see my projects). It holds handsaws, planes, squares, measuring tools, chisels etc. With some space for glues. Under my workbench I have a drawer unit with a side storage cabinet. This holds handtools, some drill bits and misc. The siide storage hold odd shaped and bulk items that I don’t use often. I am currently working on a roll away toolbox to set an upper box on it That I previously made. These when finished should hold my handtools plus some extra. I still need clamp storage. I haven’t found anything that I really like yet. I need a cabinet to store finishes in (preferably metal). I do have a small lumber rack to hold what lumber I have. I don’t have access to the hardwood mills you have in the east and midwest so don’t have a lot of lumber at anytime.
In your situation I would get on sketchup and plan out where you want tools situated that will give you an idea what you have for wall and floor space. Then throw ideas at the wall and when you get moved in. You’ll have something to start from. Just remeber a plan is something to make changes to and from.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View Richard H's profile

Richard H

489 posts in 1281 days


#4 posted 09-21-2015 05:08 PM

Congrats on your move, I agree with Charlie. For a smaller space (2 car garage and smaller) I like to keep as much on wheels as possible. My bench, tablesaw and some work surfaces/lower cabinets are the only things I have fixed and I would love to replace the cabinets with mobile versions when I can. I recently moved into a new house as well and one of the first things I did after cleaning everything out of the garage and scrubbing the oil/gas smell out of the concrete was to hang wall cabinets on french clets on one of the walls. Well after hanging new lights, don’t underestimate the value of good lighting in your space. That let me get most of my stuff out of boxes and into the cabinets which helps a ton and gives me a better idea for space. Now I just need to build myself a wall mount tool chests for all my hand tools. I also plan on removing a wall of peg board and replacing it with a couple rows of french clets when i get a change which should help tremendously as well. I’m not a peg board fan as it’s not well suited for heavy things like clets are.

View RogerM's profile

RogerM

775 posts in 2000 days


#5 posted 09-21-2015 05:09 PM

Here are a few ideas from my shop that I have found to be very useful:

Roger

-- Roger M, Aiken, SC

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

2988 posts in 2832 days


#6 posted 09-21-2015 05:11 PM

I have been very happy with the cabinets I built for my garage/shop. It is a one car affair with a lot of stuff in it…just no car!

Lots of words and pictures here.
My Garage/Shop Makeover
http://lumberjocks.com/MT_Stringer/blog/36493

Hope you get some inspiration.
Mike

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View distrbd's profile

distrbd

2246 posts in 2047 days


#7 posted 09-21-2015 05:25 PM

I have 6 of these organizers for keeping nuts&bolts, screws, small parts, never knew how useful they were until I used one,then bought 5 more with smaller trays.

-- Ken from Ontario, Canada

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

2640 posts in 878 days


#8 posted 09-21-2015 05:42 PM

So Mos I think you only use hand tools, In which case I recommend a full wall of french cleats which works great for me. I did not skimp on making the tool wall. My wall surface is 3/4 ply wood. Sealed with wiping varnish. on it I have 4 by 16 feet of french cleats made from 3/4 oak. spaced 6 inches apart But take a good look at Red’s shop.
(I’m still building wall hangers. Next up is a better plane till and a combination plane till.

I have power tools (Table Saw, Miter Saw, small band saw, drill press) on wheels.

If you are not parking a car in you shop do lay down foam board toped with plywood. Do this at least around your workbench and hand tools. Keeps the feet warm and is more forgiving when you accidentally drop that chisel.
I have one bay with a wood floor and the other is concrete. I have a wall with end pocket doors separating the two.
Clean wood working is done on the wood floor side. Dirty metal work, e.g. restoration, sharpening, etc. is on the concrete side. I also store chemicals in the concrete side. Garage is heated in the winter. I may some day move all the power tools into the concrete floor side.

(I have a tenant apartment above this garage and if we have tenants in the winter they park in the concrete floor side. so I have to be able to move things around to allow this.

Installing a garage heater and keep the shop around 50 in the winter, will help with the glues, stains, water stones. It will also keep the shop a little drier.

-- Don K, (Houghton, Michigan)

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3125 posts in 1398 days


#9 posted 09-21-2015 05:46 PM

I have a small shop, and putting cabinets on the walls would effectively reduce the size, so I hang a lot of things on the walls themselves. I find being able to see most of my tools makes it a lot easier for me to keep track of them.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View DrDirt's profile

DrDirt

4250 posts in 3343 days


#10 posted 09-21-2015 05:54 PM

as others mentioned – mobility is important.

But also consider the base/stand for your equipment. When I had my dewalt planer – I bought the metal stand for it. which had a shelf and wheels which I kept all my nailers and air tools on but it is a spacce waster.

My Miter saw is on one of these cabinets- from Sams Club

also consider lumber storage – and uising the space over the garage door.

Speaking of the garage – my house has a typical set up of a 2 car garage with 1 car garage beside it. so a 16 foot and a 9 foot door.
I intentionally did NOT put a garage door opener in the single bay, so that I didn’t have the track/chain and head unit taking away headroom, and I put shelving for lumber storage above the garage door.

-- 'Political correctness is fascism pretending to be manners' ~George Carlin

View Mosquito's profile

Mosquito

8566 posts in 1893 days


#11 posted 09-21-2015 06:02 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions and comments so far guys! Lots of really good ideas to mull over. I should probably add a little more detail (oops), which I’ll add to the original post as well.

New shop is a free-standing 24×30 garage, with 10’ ceilings. It’ll need insulating, more wiring and more lighting, so that’ll be done first, but was thinking about doing horizontal drywall on the bottom (4’) and a row of plywood (so 4’ to 8’ on the wall), and another 2’ of drywall above that to finish off the wall. I figured this would give me a strip of plywood all around the shop that I could use to put stuff anywhere (not being reliant on studs for everything).

I don’t have many power tools at the moment, but that’s partially due to space, so I hope to get a few stationary tools to help with stock prep (I’ll be getting my grandpa’s old RAS and Planer out of storage once I get settled in).

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN - http://www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods - http://www.TheModsquito.com

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3125 posts in 1398 days


#12 posted 09-21-2015 06:08 PM

I have open metal stands for a couple of tools, and at some point I may replace them with plywood cabinets since the metal stands are kind of wasted space.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

14066 posts in 2219 days


#13 posted 09-21-2015 06:23 PM

The Roubo Cabinet under my workbench top is, by far, the best storage unit I have. Doesn’t limit the effective use of the bench in any way, increases it’s weight, and holds some of the most essential bench tools in the shop.

In second place is a shop storage solution I’ve used for more than a decade: lidded tubs. I have six of them, about 11×17 and 8” high, snap on lids, marked with contents on each end (Sanding, Electric 1, Electric 2, Painting, Cabling/IT, etc.). They stack easily and keep basic ‘homeowner’ things easy to find, when I need them. It’s a storage solution for things in the shop, not directly applicable to hand tools though.

Upper center in the picture below, the tubs are visible. I reach for at least one of them each week, no doubt.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View theoldfart's profile

theoldfart

8575 posts in 2052 days


#14 posted 09-21-2015 06:58 PM

Mos, I have 90%-95% of the tools I use in two chests. There is a peg wall which is mostly saws waiting to be cleaned up.

Clamps and mitre boxes have their own spots

This setup has worked well for me for several years.

-- "With every tool obtained, there is another that is needed" DonW ( Kevin )

View putty's profile

putty

1085 posts in 1207 days


#15 posted 09-21-2015 08:19 PM

Mos, I would build in some closets for things that are not used much, also a closet for air compressor and dust collection system should you get one.

-- Putty

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