Woodworking Essentials: Setting Up Shop – Small Tool Organization

By Scott Gibson
Pages: 45-52

From the February 2007 issue #160
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?Many of us plan our workshops around big things – workbenches, table saws, planers and jointers. It’s a challenge to arrange these large tools so the shop is efficient and comfortable, especially when space is limited. But as we ponder the best layout for these giants it’s the small tools that can catch us by surprise.

It begins innocently enough. We typically have so few tools at the start that it hardly seems to matter where we store them; many woodworkers dive in with only a few used hand tools and a couple basic power tools. They all seem to fit handily in a couple of cardboard boxes. But in time, shops and tool collections have a way of getting bigger and more complicated. Eventually we have to deal with a jumble of small tools that accumulated in our shops while we weren’t paying attention.

Cardboard boxes won’t work any longer. There are too many tools, and they are too valuable to dump together in a box or a drawer where they can bang against each other. Moreover, some of them are used all the time, some only rarely. And mixing layout tools with router bits, or chisels with sandpaper, will seem a lot less than helpful when you’re in a hurry to find the right tool for the job.

From the February 2007 issue #160
Buy this issue now