Our shop has a lot of things in common with our readers’ shops, especially those who work in basements or abandoned coal mines. The overhead lighting leaves a lot to be desired. I’ve recently been working on a project with ridiculously small details and decided I needed a dedicated workbench light. I found a great LED fixture, thanks to my lovely and charming wife and IKEA. She got one of these lights a few weeks ago, and when payday rolled around, I braved the crowds at the giant retailer, ate a plate of Swedish meatballs and lingonberries and picked up a couple of these lights for my bench.
IKEA usually gets bashed in the woodworking media, but I couldn’t be happier with this little gooseneck LED light, the Tived. It comes with a clamp and a permanent mounting plate. I screwed the plate to a block of wood, and glued a dowel in the bottom of the block. I can place the light in any of the dog holes in my bench. At the business end is a small 3-watt LED that throws a nice warm spot of light, aimed exactly where I need it. It’s a low-voltage light (the transformer is attached to the plug) that doesn’t get hot and doesn’t get in the way. At the back of the fixture is a flexible arm that can be twisted and aimed. At the clamp end is a straight shaft that keeps the light above the bench surface. Similar lights, without the straight shaft, are also available. The Jansjo, with a spring clamp on the end appears to be a good light to clamp on the band saw or drill press.
Accurate work is so much easier when you can actually see what you’re doing.
Here are some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday work around the shop. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality.