I’ve seen plenty of online tours of beautiful big woodshops. So, I thought I’d share my small apartment woodworking corner for a little contrast.
Here’s where 90% of my woodworking time is spent. It’s the corner of a second bedroom that I also share with my girlfriend. I have a basic bench made from reclaimed douglas fir, an ikea table top and some maple to add clamping surface around the edges. Other than that there’s a shelf above to hold hand tools and underneath I have a drill press, a shop vac, a couple bench hooks and a place to store my planer.
This is my small but effective plane collection. I started with the stanley #4 and later found a nice deal on the woodriver block - #4 - #6 set on craigslist. I haven’t had a strong need for other bench plane sizes yet, but I’d love to round it out with a low angle jack and a #8.
Here are most of my marking and measuring tools aside from some other basics like a large ruler, a tape measure and some other pencils. I haven’t actually used the dial indicator yet, but have been planning on building a thickness caliper with it.
My first set of chisels was this harbor freight set. I built a little box to hold them and a few other tools. I finally upgraded and got the 4 pack of ashley iles bevel edge chisels. They’re way better, but the harbor freight chisels were able to accomplish a ton over the year or two that I used them. They were well worth the $8 investment. Also you can see a stack of scrapers, a burnisher, a scraper holder, a modern stanley #151 spokeshave and a wooden spokeshave I’m finishing up. It uses an affordable blade meant for woodriver’s shave.
My sharpening kit consists of a coarse dmt stone, a fine diamond stone, shapton kuromaku stones (#1000, #5000 & #8000), some green compound, a brillo pad and a rag soaked in jojoba oil. 90% of my sharpening is done with the #1000 and #8000 stones and stropping compound. The #5000 feels almost identical to the #8000 and the coarse dmt is primarily for flattening, but it and the other diamond stone come in handy from time to time.
The planer obviously gets brought outside before I use it, but the drill press and shopvac get used where they are. I also keep a waste bag and a couple bench hooks down here.
I get a closet to keep the rest of my tools, glues, finishes, lumber, clamps and everything else in. Most of the lumber is hidden further to the right in there, but I never really keep much on hand at any one time. From top to bottom of the stack there’s a small scrap box, a general toolbox (wrenches and what not), a crosscut sled, a router, a table saw and a big box of rarely used tools. The table saw gets used the most out of any of my power tools and I carry it outside whenever I use it and put it back in this crazy stack when I’m done. It’s either killing my back or making it stronger. Either way it’s working for now.
I’ve been getting into acoustic luthiery (guitars 2 & 3 are in the works) and this is my bending iron. I got it second hand but I believe it’s from lmii. I also forgot this wheel gauge when I shot the marking tools so I threw it in here for good measure.
Here you can see a little bit about how the bench is put together. There’s two layers of 3/4 maple that surround the bench top. Only one layer is visible from the top. They’re pinned and glued to the long grain side, dovetailed on the front corners and use two additional bolts that hold the ends on while allowing for movement. These are some of my first (and only) dovetails. I used the dozuki with a guide and they’re obviously not perfect but close enough to hold well. The maple surrounding provides a good amount of room for clamping to both the top and side of the bench.
Lastly here’s another view where you can see a bit of how the douglas fir legs are put together and bolted to threaded inserts in the top. I added this clamp rack to the side and that was a terrible idea. The relatively small size of this bench means it definitely moves when I work on it and consequently all the clamps fall off the rack one at a time.
It’s been a good little shop for two years, but I’m happy to say it’s looking like we’re getting our first house in a month or two and I’ll have a whole garage to start clouding with sawdust.