Clean VS Cluttered

  • Advertise with us

« back to Safety in the Woodworking Shop forum

Forum topic by sawblade1 posted 05-23-2010 08:42 PM 1801 views 0 times favorited 27 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View sawblade1's profile


754 posts in 3052 days

05-23-2010 08:42 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

After cleaning up my shop I noticed most of the mess was scrap lumber, sawdust and small tools that seemed to never have the same home :(
Just wonder if my thought is leaning toward a trend in cleaner more efficient shops, after spending 3.5 hours vacuuming my shop I am a little frustrated with cleaning up and not having any pay for it :(
This to me is a time eater which could be better spent doing something else, plus it seems to be a fire hazard with all of the dust laying around , tripping hazards with clutter, and a safety hazard having to worry about something being on a tool table. I know the nostalgic feeling of creating dust but how many of you guys are fed up with cleaning up for hours.
I would like to hear both sides of this debate :)

-- Proverbs Ch:3 vs 5,6,7 Trust in the lord with all thine heart and lean not unto your own understanding but in all your ways aknowledge him and he shall direct your path

27 replies so far

View thatwoodworkingguy's profile


375 posts in 2955 days

#1 posted 05-23-2010 08:54 PM

I clean the shop at the end of everyday. I cant handle working in an even slightly messy shop!
I love it to sparkle

-- ~Eagle America~ ~Woodcraft~

View a1Jim's profile


117117 posts in 3603 days

#2 posted 05-23-2010 08:58 PM

I like a clean shop so I can find tools and work without damaging my project. Even though I have three dust collectors I still spend a fare amount of time sweeping up. I think for my part I’d be better off setting up to collect the saw dust than the time it takes to vacuum or sweep it up, That’s something I need to work on.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18288 posts in 3701 days

#3 posted 05-23-2010 09:40 PM

I don’t want to think about it, much less talk about it :-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 3698 days

#4 posted 05-23-2010 09:41 PM

I like a clean shop, thats the only way I can find my tools.

View rance's profile


4258 posts in 3186 days

#5 posted 05-23-2010 10:04 PM

I prefer an uncluttered shop, a place for most tools, but I don’t mind seeing dust on an item or two. I see other woodworkers spend an inordinant amount of time ‘cleaning up their shop’. I would think they would far benefit by spending that time spent on improving their DC system. I think one should make an attempt to clean from time to time, but I see far too much time spent cleaning up shops. I think a better use of time would be organizing to keep the clutter down.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View JAGWAH's profile


929 posts in 3109 days

#6 posted 05-23-2010 11:00 PM

I don’t really care either way. I don’t care for a cluttered shop but a bit messy is no biggy. I do like cleaning tho. The process of cleaning from time to time through the day gives my conscience mind a rest allowing my subconsciounce minions to peruse the problems Iam facing. Sometimes when I finish cleaning they’ve found a dusty bit of brillance laying about the back of my brain and kick it forward to my concience side. Then Eureka! Another moment of brillance and a clean shop to boot. And sometimes as my wife likes to point out I made find that package of sawzall blades I’ve already bought twice over.

-- ~Just A Guy With A Hammer~

View dbhost's profile


5726 posts in 3257 days

#7 posted 05-23-2010 11:30 PM

I am a bit funny about my shop. It is a complete disaster, but not because of sawdust, or even tools, but rather other non shop stuff that doesn’t really have a home. My lovely wife doesn’t quite understand that the time I spend in the shop cleaning, means I can spend more time actually working on the projects she wants done instead of looking for my tools under her planters, and bags of mulch… I really need a garden shed!

I should mention, I am NO neat freak, and operating room clean shops freak me out as much as completely messy shops do, maybe more so…. There really needs to be a balance…

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View SnowyRiver's profile


51457 posts in 3506 days

#8 posted 05-23-2010 11:31 PM

I prefer an uncluttered shop too. I often stop in the middle of a project and clean the shop then start again. I like to be able to find tools, and I dont want to slip on the sawdust on the floor.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View GMman's profile


3902 posts in 3723 days

#9 posted 05-23-2010 11:33 PM

Jim should have a clean shop he is never in it he is always on LJ making comments on any little fart that is posted.
Just a joke Jim

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3847 days

#10 posted 05-24-2010 02:55 AM

I like a clean and uncluttered shop as well. If I don’t keep it that way my wife will “volunteer” to help me tidy it up and then I can’t find any of my hand tools since she will invariably stick them in the first drawer that looks empty enough to hold them.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3799 days

#11 posted 05-24-2010 03:02 AM

I could not stand to work in a dirty, cluttered and unorganized shop. When I am done using a tool I put it away or hang it up. If the floor needs sweeping I sweep it. After every project I completely clean the shop before starting another one.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2794 posts in 3463 days

#12 posted 05-24-2010 03:35 AM

I try to clean after each job or more often if it’s a longer one. It just feels good to start with an organized space and feels lousy when you work in a space that is in disarray.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2794 posts in 3463 days

#13 posted 05-24-2010 03:38 AM

“Jim should have a clean shop he is never in it he is always on LJ making comments on any little fart that is posted.
Just a joke Jim”

Well maybe so but Jim farts out some pretty nice work.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3100 days

#14 posted 05-24-2010 02:30 PM

I have a compulsion about keeping things organized. I really have a designated place for everything in my shop and I am pretty good at keeping stuff where it belongs. However, that is only half the battle. The other half is dust and chips (especially when I spend time on the lathe). I fear I put off cleaning up the dust and chips until I just can’t stand it any more.

It seems like my supportive wife should help with the cleaning of my shop but I know that’s never going to happen.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View Gregn's profile


1642 posts in 3009 days

#15 posted 05-24-2010 05:30 PM

If my shop is clean it shows my head is clear and direct. If my shop is a mess it shows that my head is full of dust and is scatter brain that day. I do enjoy cleaning the shop as it tends to inspire me to relax and think as well as take a break and slow down.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

showing 1 through 15 of 27 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics