Winds of Change
When a tree fell and demolished John Gunter's detached-garage workshop, he viewed it as an opportunity to rebuild the shop to his specifications. He hired four Amish builders who had the new structure up and under a roof in eight hours. John insulated the walls and sheathed the interior with 1⁄2 " oriented strand board (OSB) to provide solid anchoring for wall storage without having to hunt for wall studs.
Once the walls were in place, John says he got a little stressed coming up with a layout for his shop. He didn't want a fixed solution. "I took a page from lean manufacturing concepts and decided to put everything on wheels or on the wall," he says.
To save space, John consolidated tools on mobile stands. For example, his mitersaw and benchtop planer occupy opposite sides of a flip-top cart. Likewise, his drill press, 10" bandsaw, and belt/disc sander share a mobile cabinet. The jointer, and a metal file cabinet in which John stores his circular saw, drills, and routers, stand alone on plywood bases with locking swivel casters.
John designed and built a portable dust-collection cart that houses his shop vacuum and a Dust Deputy separator atop a 5-gallon bucket. To keep project lumber close at hand, he also built a rolling lumber rack. Compartments in a dual-sided storage cabinet hold plastic parts bins, trays, and tubs, while clamps and levels hang on the side of the cabinet. And, of course, it's on casters, too.
For final project assembly, John rigged up a folding work table on a mobile cabinet. A pair of strap hinges allow him to flip the top vertically for storage, maximizing floorspace.
Looking around John's shop, you can see he's already taken advantage of his new surroundings. And there's still plenty of wall and floor space to allow him flexibility and growth in his woodworking future.