June 25, 2022

Woody Woodworking

and its tools

Designing a Small Workshop | Video 3 of 3

4 min read

Designing and Organizing a workshop

This video will discuss:
1. Compressed Air
2. Temperature, ventilation, and humidity
3. Lighting, power, and plumbing considerations.
4. Tool and wood storage
Compressed Air
Years ago, I installed a pipe from my shop out the foundation wall, underground to my shed. I did this to avoid the loud compressor noise. A few years later, a landscaper cut and repaired the pipe. but it was never the same. It leaked, and constantly cycled.
So, I moved my compressor into my shop, but I built a plywood box lined with Safe and Sound ROXUL on the plywood box walls. The ROXUL deadens the noise of the compressor by 50%.
The airlines in the shop are copper, and hard-piped to the center of the shop where I have a coiled hose connection. The compressor connects to the hard piping with a short flex hose and is filtered by a moisture separator. Hard piping air in your shop eliminates the hose trip hazard and ensures that you always have air when you want it.
I use compressed air for all my nails, brad, pin, and staple fastening as well as for cleaning dirt and dust off parts.
Temperature, and Humidity
To heat the shop, I installed a permanently mounted 7KW King high-capacity electric space heater with a 25,600 BTU rating. I mounted the heater near the bulkhead doo, the coldest area of the shop. The heater faces a downrange in the shop and does a great job bringing up the temperature on cold days.
I added rim joist insulation and an insulated door to the bulkhead last year and the temperature in the shop increased 15-degrees, it was amazing.
Controlling Humidity | Keeping Rust Off Tools
It is much easier to protect your tools from rust than to deal with the consequences of rusty tools later.
Three main components for protecting your tools from rust are:
1. Control humidity
2. Avoid getting tools wet
3. Apply a protective coating to your tabletop tools on a regular basis
Having a basement workshop in the Northeast means having to deal with humidity. Most basements are not heated or cooled, and humidity can wreak havoc on shop tool surfaces. Finding light rust on hand tools, table saw, band saw, and drill press tables are not uncommon. To deal with the shop issues I purchased a dehumidifier, it is in the older portion of my shop and drains directly into my slop sink. This dehumidifier is always on but does not run in the winter, only in humid months.
One area that dramatically improved the shop’s humidity was to install a drain along with the bulkhead door. the drain connects to a deep dry-well well below the frost line. If I keep the drain open, this drain works year-round. Prior to this, I was getting some seepage and sometimes puddling of eater near the door.

How To Keep Rust Off Woodworking Tools


I also treat all metal surface tops with either a Boeshield T9 spray or Butchers paste wax, which helps to keep the metal tops rust-free for a long time. Spray coatings apply faster but are not as lasting as wax.
Lighting, Power, and Plumbing Considerations.
Spend the time and money to wire your shop properly. That means you should not be relying on extension cords but instead have dedicated 20-amp circuits for tools. Other examples are floor outlets for table saws, and plenty of wall outlets so you can reach them with the cord supplied with the tool.
My shop has #???AMPs dedicated to powering it.
1. LED lighting [spotlights] – changed out fluorescents for LED strip lights.
2. Wire shop for specific tools – 230, 240, hardwire dust collector
3. Install separate 20-amp circuits
4. Pull down the power cord at your assembly table
5. Utility sink – hand washing, paintbrush cleaning,
Wood Storage
I’ve gone through many iterations of wood storage from piles, to a rolling cart, to what I have now. Currently, I have a small bin with dividers for sheet stock and boards, and wall storage racks up high over my doorway.
Ceiling height is an issue with full sheet stock – I can “JUST-FIT” fit an 8-foot length but prefer NOT to store a 4×8 sheet since it sticks into too far. I store full-size sheet stock, and longer length stock in a shed outside my shop.
I also have a ceiling rack above the doorway for longer boards and clamps. Inside the old section of the basement there is a small ceiling rack where I store moldings and other thinner stock.

Tool Storage
1. Keep most used tools, clamps, and fasteners at hand – avoid walking across the shop
2. Hang often reached for tools
3. Store infrequent tools in drawers – labeled and organized by function
4. Keep accessories together with tool [drill press wall, sandpaper, cutting blade accessories, nail gun station, clamps, router items on wall, all wrenches, screws, wrenches, and screwdrivers]
5. Label everything. [ marker, paint gun, label maker]

Woodworking News Source: A Concord Carpenter / ToolBoxBuzz

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