Building A Multi-Functioning Tool Station For A Smaller Shop

The workstation presented below can house a table saw, router, jigsaw, and pretty much any benchtop tool for any shop. But especially for a smaller shop this is an essential package. Before getting into the specifics of it though, keep in mind some techniques to make a smaller work shop into one that is still great and productive.

Especially the novice woodworker will ask what to do if shop space is limited? Most new to woodworking either are limited with the square footage, the amount of larger machinery and tools they have, or both. But don’t fret or panic just yet if this is your situation, there are methods to utilize even the smallest of work spaces and still design and create your woodworking projects.

WOODWORKING SHOP LAYOUT THAT IS EFFICIENT 

Each shop design and layout is going to face a unique set of challenges. The woodworker is going to have to build it to where it is correct for him (or her.) First they have to figure out where the location will be. You can fit a shop in the garage, the basement, under the carport, or even have a dedicated small building if you can’t go large. Once decided then you can move to the next step. But Planning the layout of your workshop early in its development can keep you from spending years in an uncomfortable, poorly organized space.

A Woodworking shop layout should work smoothly and efficiently. However, in most shops that I’ve seen, planning is lacking. With all the machines and materials required for a project, a shop can get crowded and cramped. All it takes is a little planning. You can make your shop layout for woodworking efficient. The key to planning is to think about how a typical project “flows” through the shop. Then establish an area for each part of the process.

Woodworkers love tools. So many will look at one and buy it on impulse, only to shelf it for years. Get rid of junk we don’t use even if you paid for it 5 years ago. Take the loss. Get organized, there is little room for those compromises in a small shop.

A CLEAT SYSTEM

After I built my first shop, I knew that I would be saving space by hanging tools, clamps, jigs, etc.. on the walls. There needs to be additional space as well on the walls for new tools. I mounted cleats on the walls in order to give a home to existing tools and tools (especially hand tools) for the future. It keeps them off of the work stations, and in a small shop this is essential. I mount as much as I can on the wall cleats—everything from clamp organizers to the wooden mallet.

THE WORKSTATIONS

A small shop will typically end up with one main workstation. That comes to the video below. I have seen many similar but what makes this one so nice is you can use benchtop tools in it and switch them out quickly and easily. A bench top table saw, router, and jigsaw are shown here but you can expand this to many tools that are similar.

What do you think? Please leave a comment below.
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