Monday, November 5, 2012

Working from a tool chest - my perspective

Well I've been working out of my tool chest for a little while now and have to say it's a bit of a different way of working. I find the tool chest is working out for me though in a number of ways. For those of you who follow this blog you know that I have a basement shop of small size and it's walls are of sandstone making wall hung anything kind of untenable. I did add a plywood faced wall by the stairs and tried that for a while before acquiring my tool chest but have moved many of the tools there to the chest now. Here are some things I like about the tool chest:
  • Limited Space (seems odd to list this as a thing I like but hear me out): I like the limited space as it has forced me to consider my tools carefully and to weed out the crap. I can maintain what I can keep in the box and what I have sold that was extra has provided cash for filling in the missing pieces and upgrading the poorer tools. I have tools I like, I don't have more than I can maintain, I know where to find them.
  • Organization: I know where all my tools are and they are within easy reach. I get out what I'm using and put it back when I'm done.
  • Environment: My tools stay clean and dry and are ready to used
  • Access: Everything is right near my bench or wherever I need it to be I can wheel my chest there. 
There are some downsides, mostly these are related to this particular chest and not tool chests as such. Since I didn't construct this chest but instead was lucky enough to acquire an old one and give it a new life in the workshop it has some features that I and it's original joiner disagree upon. Primary among these is the lift out saw till. It stores the saws well but it obscures the rack which hold my try squares and such. Also the chest could be deeper as the moulding planes have to rest on their soles as opposed to sitting on their ends. This is a minor complaint since I keep my planes in an order that allows me to find the right profiles without looking but it is something I would remedy if I were building a chest myself. One day I may do that but for now I'm happy using this one.

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