In my wood shop, I have countless little items that make a day in the shop just a little bit easier. They are the necessities of spending 3 hours working instead of 2 hours working and 1 hour searching for things. Here are some of my unsung-hero tools in the shop:
The apron – Without my shop apron, I am lost. I usually wear work clothes in the basement, so I am not really concerned about getting a little epoxy on them. The apron is more for the pockets. In them, I always have the same items. They are the items I use most and that I will end up burning minutes searching for them if they are not in the pockets. In addition to using the apron for the woodshop, I will also throw it on when I am doing small projects in the house. It serves as a small tool belt.
- A tape measure. I find the Stanley Power Lock 16′ thin, light, and small enough for the apron. I keep the big Stanley FatMax 30′ tape on the bench and I seldom need to measure that distance with the boats I build.
- A combination square. I use an Empire E255IM model that has served me well for many years. It is the 6″ model so it fits nicely in a pocket. Made in the USA!!
- A pencil. Look, I probably have about 40 pencils hidden around my shop. I still can’t find one when I need one. The flat carpenters pencils fit well into the apron
- A knife. I love my Lenox retractable knife. I have had it when I built my house about 10 years ago and it is bomb proof. Buy the 50-pack of blades and you may never run out.
- Needlenose pliers with cutters. I keep it simple with these. Just a basic pair of Stanley 6″ pliers.
That wraps up the tools in my apron. The apron hangs on my shoulders, so I only want the essentials in there to keep the weight down. If I know I will be hammering or drilling alot, there is also room for my trusty old Stanley 16oz hammer and my newest addition, the lightweight DeWalt Lithium Ion Drill.
There is also alot to be said for keeping your woodshop clean and organized, but that it a topic for another blog (no, that is not me in the picture below)!
Happy Tools to you!