So, you’ve decided it’s time to get your overalls on and reopen your garage workshop that has remained dormant since you first thought it was a good idea to set one up when you moved in all those years ago! But after so many years of inactivity, you might have forgotten what essential supplies you need to ensure your projects go without a hitch. An adequately stocked workshop is similar to a well-stocked larder in that you should always have access to your seasonings without having to stop cooking to run to the store. The same is true in a workshop (albeit minus the need for salt and pepper), where you are doomed to failure without the necessary supplies on hand. From tools to supplies, this post will offer you a helping hand and explore seven critical things every good workshop needs to be prepared.
Regardless of the type of work you are attempting (carpentry, metal fabrication, etc.), it’s vital to ensure that you have one area available to not only store the various bits and bobs required for a job but also that they’re organized efficiently. This means having drawers for your spare rubber gaskets, different sizes of screws and bolts, and any other paraphernalia you should have on hand when the need arises. Having one area to store everything will make your life so much more serene and your work area far more efficient. You can build something yourself or buy a storage unit readymade from your local hardware store; it doesn’t really matter. However, constructing one could be an interesting initial first project to whet your whistle, so to speak.
A Plethora Of Glues For Different Purposes
Every beginner handyman knows the value of glue but doesn’t always understand the need to have a well-stocked inventory of the various different types of bonds required for different tasks. When it comes to glue, they aren’t all created equally, and what works for one material won’t for another. At the bare minimum, you should invest in the following adhesives to ensure a well-rounded selection:
Yellow wood glue
Waterproof wood glue
Cyanoacrylate glue (AKA super glue)
Hot glue (that comes from a hot glue gun)
Various Grits Of Sandpaper
Whether you’re a wannabe welder or a career carpenter, you will need sandpaper. However, you can’t merely purchase one grit and call it a day; you will need a range of grits from the coarsest 60 paper up to the finest 320 and maybe even beyond, depending on the materials you work with. Even if you use power tools, you should still stock up on hand sanding papers since they offer you more flexibility and will be crucial for sanding the areas that power tools can’t reach (such as inside very acute angles or recesses).
A Range Of Wrenches In Different Sizes
No matter what work you do, there will always be a need for wrenches from hand to hex keys; they provide such versatility that you are essentially naked without them. It’s best to invest some cash and splash out on quality USA-made products if you can afford them because they will be made of higher-quality material than cheaper options, which means they will last longer and be less prone to stripping difficult-to-extricate nuts and screws.
The word “workshop” will mean different things to different people. To the metal fabricator, it means angle grinders, welders, and other heavy-duty tooling. Conversely, to the carpenter, it will mean wood saws, planes, chisels, etc. Therefore, it is crucial to study your chosen field and familiarize yourself with the most commonly used equipment in that field. This will allow you to invest only in the things you need and eschew those unrelated to the materials you will fettle with.
Pencils And Material Markers
Measure twice, and cut once. That’s the age-old mantra that rings true in pretty much every profession. However, what use is your measurement if you have no means to mark down your measurements on the material in question? That is why it is important to always have some markers on hand so you can designate precise cutting lines. Although there is a range of fancy marks on the market, you can’t go wrong with the humble pencil or marking knife.
No workshop worth its salt is complete without a set of old rags. You can use them to wipe away the effluent left behind when working on materials, whether it be grease, shavings, or your own blood and sweat!
The more you work in your workshop, the more you will discover what’s missing and something that can only come from frequent use. Nonetheless, the things mentioned in this post are a great starting point and will get you up and running in no time.
The Seeker Newspaper is located at 327 Second Street E., Cornwall, ON K6H 1Y8 -- All rights reserved The Seeker does not accept responsibility for errors, misprints or inaccuracies published within. The opinions and statements of our columnists are not to be presumed as the statements and opinions of The Seeker, and should not substitute professional or medical advice.
ISSN 2562-1750 (Print) ISSN 2562-1769 (Online)