5 Things You Need on Your Garage Workbench
Your garage workbench is the place where new projects and old refurbishings come to life. Having it set up with the right tools not only allows you to get the job done more efficiently, accurately, and with greater ease but it is imperative to working safely.
The range of workbench accessories that can simplify project completion is endless and will certainly depend on the type of project and materials you are working with. There are however a few essentials we don’t think you should skip when setting up a workbench. These five accessories will set you up with a good platform from which to start multiple types of projects and allow you to add to your tool collection with more specific hardware.
Magnetic Strip or Hooks
Let’s start with the obvious. Where there is a workbench there will be tools. Where there are tools there will inevitably be disorganization. If there is one place where things should remain organized and uncluttered it’s in an area where tools and machinery are being used. A heavy-duty magnetic strip can solve this problem in an instant.
Simply let your hand tools self-adhere to the strip and pull them off when needed. Having a magnetic strip attached to the side or top frame of your bench gives you quick access to them and easily keeps them out of the way when not in use. If you can’t get a heavy-duty magnetic strip, hooks along the side of the bench can also do the trick. Just be sure to install them in a way that they won’t hinder your working position.
Tape measure is one of those items that seem to have their own pair of feet. They get left behind when measuring things, hide at the bottom of the toolbox, and generally resurface when you don’t really need them. They are, however, an integral part of making almost any project a success. For the most part, eyeballing measurements and fits just don’t work.
Having an adhesive tape measure fixed to your workbench will save you from running back and forth to where you left your portable one and allows you to ensure accuracy in an instant. You don’t have to have an extra pair of hands to use it and it will be straight with every single measurement without slipping around.
You can apply a steel measuring tape flat on the top edge of your workbench or along the side of the top frame so it is vertically attached. Get a tape measure that can be read from left to right and right to left for the most benefits.
A bench vice attached to the top or edge of your work table is almost like an extra pair of hands to hold your materials in place while working on them. This strong and sturdy accessory comes in different types designed according to the material you are using and the job at hand. Some can be clamped to the top surface and moved around as needed, while others are permanently attached with bolts through the table. The latter, although not movable, is more secure.
Bench cookies are not snacks to enjoy while at work. They are disks shaped like hockey pucks with a grip or rubber surface on the top and bottom. They will prop up and hold material in place while painting, sanding, and nailing. The rubber pads are very effective in preventing your materials from moving around. If you can’t get bench cookies, a silicone project mat is another option. Although this won’t help prop up your materials, it is effective in preventing them from slipping while working and stops tools from rolling away.
Last but not least, we highly recommend a clamp lamp to give you clearer visibility when working on smaller angles and technical features. This will not only improve work safety but also prevent eye strain. If you work in the evening or on a rainy day, the extra lighting can be a great help and stop you from missing fine details that you’ll have to redo again later.
Now that you’re set up with the basics, it’s time to grab your tools and start crafting.