Joe’s Garage Workshop

Someone once told me that garages are for cars…silly. I use mine for my workshop where I build mostly built-in cabinetry. It’s a 2.5 car garage with insulated walls and ceiling. I’m still working on a dedicated heater/AC unit. Most of the exposed walls are plywood so I can attach anything anywhere it’s needed. The wall of storage cabinets is made from pallet rack bought at a big box and then faced with 1×4’s and MDF doors. My compressed air is coming from above which keeps the shop much safer and tidier while I’m working.

The table saw is a Craftsman with a hand made router table attached. I’m getting better at dust control, but the table saw base doesn’t catch it very well (maybe a Sawstop would solve some of those problems). The miter station is a work-in-progress at the moment. I still need to add an extension table and backstop.
My favorite piece is the wheeled tool cabinet. It holds a ton and everything is easily accessible.


  1. Nicely done Joe. I really like your wheeled tool cabinet with the holder for the plans. I have a wall to hang my tools and it takes a lot of space that I could use for cabinets for storage. I’m going to have to take a good look and my set-up and consider the WTC. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Matt December 19, 2012


    I agree with brand, the surface to layout plans on the rolling tool cabinet is a great idea.
    I am interested in how you have the dust collection set up on your miter saw station. It looks like you have the D/C hose connected to a metal box mounted to the rear of the station. It would be great to hear how you handle dust on the miter saw. I’m looking to build a miter saw station myself and am trying to figure out how to handle the dust control.

    Thanks for sharing your shop.


  3. Steve December 19, 2012

    I really like the wheeled tool cabinet also. Gives me a few ideas on things to add to my Festool vac which follows me everywhere.

  4. Shop looks awesome! I really like the way you hung the bikes by recessing them in ceiling.

  5. Thomas G. Kaiser December 19, 2012

    Very nice shop. If I don’t have a basement, my cars would be out in the rain too. I can see you make some of your projects shop furniture, and I think that is the most challenging because it is for the shop. ( a very special place). The bike holes is nice add too. Things looked organized and not over done with un-needed tools.


  6. Dave December 19, 2012

    Very well organized (especially when compared to mine) and the shop-made tool stands are excellent. Some great ideas there to incorporate in my own shop projects.

  7. duckkisser December 20, 2012

    i like your cart have all your most used tool on it i have a tool chest that i roll around does same thing but yours is handier and it probably weighs less

    like all the cabinets that storage has got to be handy

    very well layed out shop

    its not over done with lots of assessories and prity set up it looks like a shop that is used specificly for building stuff.

  8. TennesseeYankee December 20, 2012

    What part of the shop do you like most?

    for me it is the efficient use of ceiling space.

  9. David Herman December 21, 2012

    great use of storage space. You might want to look into the incra table saw/router table system. I’ve got the router table in my shop and I’m looking to maybe convert it into my table saw fence as well. It’s a great way to save space in the shop and get, in my humble opinion, the best after market fence in the world. Just throwing out some ideas for you.

  10. Jason December 21, 2012

    One of my goals for next year is to make more jigs and make my garage more efficient. I’m thinking a cart similar to yours is in order. I also need to utilize ceiling space more as Tennessee Yankee mentioned.

    Thanks for sharing your setup.

  11. John December 21, 2012

    Very nice Joe. Love the cart with the hand tools and the small angled drawing board. One of the things I need to do is add in copper lines for the air. That is a nice feature instead of dragging the hose all over the floor.

    • Brian December 21, 2012

      What is the purpose of going with copper for the airlines? Is it weight, cleaner air, or just leftover pipe from another project? The reason I ask is because I have used black pipe and an in-line filter. Its a fairly simple setup although a bit bulky sometimes and i would imagine a bit more cost effective as well.

  12. Marie December 21, 2012

    OK Joe, I want you to come over to my place a get me organized. Compare to your shop my place looks like a chaos bomb exploded. ;~D

  13. William Belknap December 21, 2012

    Re dust collection at the Craftsman table saw: I have attached a 1/4″ sheet of plywood under my 1968 saw – resting on the lip around the edge, covered the slots in front associated with the tilting and locking mechanisms with plywood scraps held with imbedded magnets salvaged from electric toothbrush heads, blocked the openings at the top beneath the cast iron with chunks of styrofoam, and enclosed the whole back around the motor and drive belt (with room for it to tilt) . This back motor box has a plexiglass top so I can monitor for problems ( there have not been any), slots cut in the back face of this box near the motor ends for cooling flow. The 6″ dust collection pipe connects through the bottom piece under the saw. Virtually the only dust that escapes is off the top, and most of that is picked up with an overhead unit (adjustable drop from the ceiling) with a 3″ flexible tube attached) when it can be used.

    • Ron December 21, 2012

      Nice job William. Great looking garage. What did you use to make your dust filter. I think that’s what I see in one of your pictures anyway. I recently bought one from Rockler made by Jet when they had them on sale during the Black Friday sales. Anyway nice looking garage!

  14. roger December 21, 2012

    Gr8 lookin place to have a whole lotta fun

  15. james December 21, 2012

    Nice shop joe I wish mine was as organised..

    I have a general questions for my woodworking buddies and I am not sure where I should post it so here goes ….I have a Dewalt Planer and living in the suburbs it is extremely noisy . Does anyone know if the powermatic 15″ is much quieter. Trying not to p off my neighbors.

  16. Joe ( December 21, 2012

    Thanks everyone for the kind words and thanks Marc for posting my shop.

    Answers to some questions…

    – The copper pipe was partly leftover plus I wanted to practice my joints, it’s nice to practice on something that won’t leak all over the house.

    – The dust collection on the mitre saw doesn’t work well. It’s a sealed box underneath that only gets dust from the small slot on the saw. Not very effective.

    – The shop usually looks like a bomb hit it, especially after a project is finished. The day I took pictures was a very good day.

    – The overhead air has got to be the biggest safety item I’ve added. I was always tripping on cords.

    Thanks again everyone,

  17. Skip December 21, 2012

    Great looking shop. I really need to duplicate some of your storage/organization options… It would make it easier to work in any shop.

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