What Makes A Good Workshop Space?

Without a doubt the best shop is a large, separate building, with plumbing and heat.  

It is divided up to include a storage area adjoining a large door to the outside, a central workspace and a finishing room that’s walled off from the rest of the shop and ventilated to the outdoors.

Obviously, establishing and maintaining such a shop requires money and space that most of us don’t have available.

So look for realistic alternatives.

The two most common shop locations are the basement and the garage.  Shops have been set up in spare rooms, attics, even in closed-in porches.

When assessing a potential shop areas or considering upgrading or remodeling your current shop, keep the following factors in mind:

Space Needs:
You’ll want to have enough space to maneuver full-size sheet goods and boards that are eight feet or longer.  Ideally, this means a large enough area that you can feed large stock into a stationary tool with enough clearance on the infeed and the outfeed side.

You’ll need a convenient entry/exit point so you can carry materials into the shop and completed projects out of the shop.

You should never run more than one tool at a time (except a tool and a shop vac or dust collector) Nevertheless, you’ll need several accessible outlets.

Adequate light is essential for doing careful, comfortable, accurate and safe work.  You’ll need good overall light (a combination of natural and artificial light sources is best) as well some movable task lighting.

Ventilation/Climate Control:
To help exhaust dust and fumes, you need a course of fresh air and dust collection.  Depending on where you live, year-round shop use likely will require a means of heating and/or cooling the shop as well as controlling humidity.

Keep the inevitable intrusions of noise and dirt into the rest of the home to a minimum.

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5 Tips For Any Workshop

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This is Jay’s third shop that I’ve setup so I’ve learned a few things that do and don’t work with a shop workflow and efficiency. Here are 5 tips that you may not already utilize in your shop.

5 Keys to a Small Shop Layout

Subscribe to The Evening Woodworker on Youtube

This is my workshop design tutorial on how to layout a small shop or any shop. My garage shop design works well for a variety of different types of projects of various sizes and shapes. If you follow this guide, you can layout your workshop or garage shop with confidence and maximizing your shop efficiency and flow.

The Ultimate One-Car Garage Woodshop Tour!

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