Woodworking In Small Places

Woodworking in Small SpacesIt may be true that every woodworkers dream is to have a huge workshop, with every kind of woodworking tool imaginable. But the reality is, many are having to make do with much less than their dream workshop.

Some people mistakenly believe that you can’t do creative woodworking unless you have ample room for a big, huge workshop to house all the power tools necessary to carry out your craft.

The good news is, it’s possible to do woodworking in small spaces. You just need to make the most effective use of your available space and recognize that you may not be able to get that 14 inch band saw until you have a bigger place to put it.

Power Tools vs Hand Tools

It’s possible to enjoy creative woodworking in a small space with no power tools at all, but you can still have some power tools, even in a small space. They just need to be bench-top tools or handheld ones.

How many power tools, and in fact, how many total tools you can have if you’re considering woodworking in a small space will depend on how much space you’ll actually have, the types of projects you want to create and most importantly, how determined you are to accomplish it.

There are people with micro-shops all over the globe, and they’ve set them up in basements, corners of garages, apartments, bedrooms, even walk-in closets.

Planning Is Critical

if you’re looking at woodworking in small spaces, the very first step is planning the layout of your micro-shop. When you don’t have much space to work with, it’s important to make the most out of every square foot.

Can you use wall space for storage? Do you have room for workbench or will you need to consider a scaled down model or one that folds?

Consider the tools you’d like to have and then explore the possible alternatives. For example, you may not be able to use a large table saw in your micro-shop, but depending on your available space, you may find that a portable version will do the job.

Don’t Forget Safety

Safety (check out our article about Woodworking For Kids for more safety tips) is a consideration for anyone doing woodworking, regardless of the amount of space they’re working in. However, working with wood indoors or in small confined spaces has its own set of problems that must be addressed.

Chances are the space you’re considering is not adequately ventilated for woodworking. You can wear a dust mask to protect your lungs from the sawdust and particulates while you’re working, but that won’t offer them any protection from the suspended particles that linger in the air after you have stopped.

Plan to invest in an air cleaner and ideally, in a good dust collection system as well and whenever possible work outside when sanding or doing some other dust-producing task.

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