Size isn’t everything …

Workshop space, for many, can be at a premium. For the hobbyist and the professional the hunt for workshop space can be a genuine problem of finding any and/or using it efficiently. Assuming that you have found the space you like to call your workshop, be it the basement, a small bit of space in the garage, a spacious rented air conditioned building or the area out the back under a tarp – space should always be a consideration.

Firstly when planning the area think about the tools you will most frequently be using and try to keep clean routes around them. For example, if you’re doing hot work it is advisable to keep a clear, trip hazard free path between the forge and your anvil/stakes. Keep the tongs and forge tools in or near the forge and have a clear idea of where your emergency equipment is.

Below are a couple of physical solutions I have found to work very well in the workshop.

The first came about as a solution to the problem of doing mobile demonstrations at schools, museums or reenactment events. Under most anvils is a block of wood or stand. All around this stand is valuable real estate for hammers and other frequently used anvil tools. A few strips of leather off cuts and nails (old belts, plastic webbing straps all work) enables this space to be used well, gives you great access to your frequently used tools and makes for an easily moved all in one demo piece.

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A major problem in most workshops is keeping rivets and other fixings sorted and out of the way until needed. I have found that the spice posts in Ikea as a cheap solution. The bases are magnetised and can hold a full load of rivets to a metal strip nailed to the wall (or door in this case). Not only is this a useful storage solution but you can see at a glance what the stock levels are.

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There are probably as many decent solutions as there are workshops in the world, however these are just a coupl eof the things I have found over the years I have been working in my workshop. I hope you find it useful.

Posted in general musings, workshop