There’s no right or wrong way to set up your shop – let’s get that out of the way up front. Your personal preferences will overrule general practices. But those general practices are based on workflow. Give these ideas some thought and then decide how they’ll work with your personal woodworking shop.
Common sense makes many of the most popular layout determinations in a woodworking shop. For example, it simply makes sense that tools used in succession should be located together. The most logical of these groups would be the trio of your jointer, planer, and table saw. You’ll use these three tools repeatedly throughout the milling process. Keeping them in close proximity saves you time.
Think about it. How often have you come home from the lumber dealer and then carted your solid stock or sheet goods all the way across the shop to the storage in the back? Wouldn’t it be more practical – not to mention a time-saver – to unload and quickly stock your shop because storage is right next to an entrance?
And considering that your miter saw is often the first thing you’ll use on newly purchased rough stock, it’s sensible to consider putting this piece of equipment near your lumber rack.
Many of our projects will make use of the table saw. It’s the elephant in the room, as far as size requirements go. Place it centrally so you’ll have sufficient space to work on large projects. It also gives you more access to your outfeed table.
If you have the space, locate your assembly table in a central location, as well. No matter which specific tools you use, you’ll never be more than a few steps away. This means also storing your clamps centrally. Put them on a rolling cart if you also have a dedicated workbench.
Let There Be Light
Locate your workbench to take advantage of the natural light from a window. This is a wise idea if you tend to do a lot of finishing at your workbench. Opening the window gives extra ventilation.
Roll With It
Even the best laid out workshops can need some shaking up in terms of tool locations. Make this an easier task by putting those big machines on mobile bases. Why just wonder if the jointer would make more sense if it switched places with the planer? Roll them into new positions and find out!
One way to cut down on having to treat your woodworking shop like a jigsaw puzzle is to reward yourself with ample room. We can help. Check out our gallery of metal and steel garages and shops.
All the space you need doesn’t have to cost all the money you have. Check out our current building specials.