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Living a more Self Sufficient & Sustainable Lifestyle
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You know its real easy to neglect a tool shed and then not even be able to walk into it. And it looks like a lot of times you 'inherit' stuff that gets thrown in for 'someday' and b4 you know it you are in a mess....you have nothing but a rats nest.
Well years ago, DH and I were hired by relatives to get a house ready to be moved into. Along the way I happened to walk into my deceased uncle's shed and it was as though my eyes were opened to what the perfect shed should look like. I never forgot it and from time to time, I revisit that experience in my mind.....then I HAVE to clean our shed out.
When I first tackled the job, I had to start in the morning, because it required a clean building.....that took a while and lots of sweeping. Then slowly I started finding place for each item. Lots of big nails were needed to hang things on walls....the heavier the item, the bigger the nail. Then I needed lots of glass jars to separate screws, bolts, nails and other small items......all the lids were screwed to the rafters of the shed, so the jar could be screwed in place up there, outta the way. I managed to tie up certain long items to fit lenghtwise up against the rafters too. I did use a few shelf brackets to utilize some of the small pieces of wood we had lying around to make shelves.......all in all it was a winner.
Alas.....my problems are not over.
Even if I do this again and try as hard as I can to organize, we have somehow acquired some fairly large items. I can't see how I can possibly have a shed I can walk into and quickly find whatever I want. So I'd appreciate a fresh idea about what some of you do to consolidate your big items in small spaces. I think I need to take a hard look at all of it on the lawn and decide if some of that junk can be used for other things or if they need to leave.
What's the approximate floor area of your shed?
Will you be trying to store things like lawn mowers, weed whackers, or rototillers in there? or do you have another place for things like that?
Here's one of my shop areas (a narrow zone in our basement). I've just got hand and hand-held power tools in this area... my tablesaw, for instance, is elsewhere.
I've got some shelving, and I've used stacking plastic bins for nails, screws, and so forth - sorted by size. I've got some drawers and milk-crate-type bins that I use for some miscellaneous stuff.
I have a certain amt of 'good wood' in 2 of our sheds. Perhaps I can do a clean sweep and construct a bit of a cabinet to take up part of a wall......put the wood to use, as you have, and also have a place to organize some of the big things.....ice chest and tool boxes.
A lot depends on how much floor area you have, how high the ceiling is, and also what types of things you need to store. As I said, my larger floor tools (table saw, drill press, metal cut-off saw) and also such things as the weed whacker, lawn mower, and rototiller aren't stored in the shop area pictured. They're in other sheds.
The first one we built and is only about 8X16. Then FIL moved on the property and built one about 16X16, but he has passed on, so its ours now. I did manage to move everything in FIL's shed a while back, but it has to have a regular woman's touch apparently.......I need to completely pull everything outta there and see what I can do. Thats some work!!
Here's a pretty good video about organizing a garage - and many sheds would be similar in size and would have the same sorts of things stored in them.
You can ignore some ideas in this video and use the ones that make sense for you.
For instance, they've got various kinds of tape on hooks on the wall, but I store all different kinds of tape in one cardboard box, which I've got marked and keep on a particular shelf. They've used a bunch of semi-transparent plastic bins to store things - probably bins that were bought for the purpose. Instead, I either use carboard boxes (free) or bins I find at garage sales or thrift stores, and which I get very cheap.
Might as well add a little more now and then to this thread about workspace/storage-space organizing. Here are two vids I found recently that show good info on details for organizing your shop - by which I mean organizing your tools so you can find them and so they're handy to grab.
This one shows the use of magnetic strips, more or less of the type sold in hardware and kitchen-supply stores for holding steel knives on a kitchen wall for ready access. In my own shop I'm using this method for holding punches, small chisels, specialty bits, shop knives and such. I think it works out great.
This one is by a guy who developed his own nifty little idea for a wall or pegboard mounting system to hold various types of pliers. It's an alternative to having them piled willy-nilly into tool boxes or toolchest drawers, where they can be hard to see with all the other tools that get piled on top of them.
This fella re-organized his home shop and his most recent video offering gives panoramic camera views of all areas of his shop:
The occasion of this vid is that he wants to show off the just-repainted the floor and walls. But the views you get show how well organized his shop is, and therefore he can keep it tidy and always find tools and supplies easily. Because you can pause a video using the little || option at the bottom left, you can (as I have) study the areas that might be particularly relevant to organizing any part of your workspace that may be challenging for you.
This guy is serious about his shop because not only is he a handyman, DIY guy, and tinkerer but he drives a truck for a living. He puts videos up on Youtube pretty continually, on interesting topics, and you can subscribe to his "channel".
Last edited by Joel_BC (09/26/2012 6:26 pm)
Here's another super-organized guy (Australian, I believe) with a tidy shop. If you listen closely, you can understand what he's saying (it is a form of English, just as yours or mine is ):
To be honest, I'd probably never want to get my shop this organized, tidy, and clean! Yet, still, I do admire some of the systems he's using. He's got a lot of nifty shaped tool-hanging wall mounts, and it appears he's made them from wood or MDF by cutting them out with a jigsaw or bandsaw and possibly then routing a profile into their edges.
There are decent systems for organizing your tools on a wall, good systems, and better systems. Recommended to me by someone, this Youtub vid was posted by a guy who re-organizes his tools - the ones he wants handy at the back of his workbench. And I think it shows a better system (one type of better system):
Sure, it'd take a bit of time to make this sort of set-up, but you can see the advantages. A good Saturday or weekend project.
You can move these "cleat" tool hangers, left or right, more readily than the hooks made for pegboards.