WoodCentral's Book Reviews
Smart Workshop Solutions

Smart Workshop Solutions
by Paul Anthony

Taunton Press: 2003
Paperback, 172 pp., $$19.95
ISBN 1-56158-578-5

     Here is a chance to organize and improve several elements in one's own woodworking shop, borrowing ideas on wood storage, clamp storage, lathe tool storage, workstations and assembly tables, from over a dozen experienced woodworkers who have maximized the efficiency of their own shops and are willing to share their designs.
     Paul Anthony visited Ken Burton, Craig Bentzley, Brian Boggs, Mike Callihan, Bill Hylton, Fred Matlack, Tony O'Malley, Andy Rae, Larry Seachrist, Walt Segl, Don Weber and Bob Whitley for ideas. His new book shows how to build their favorite workshop solutions to common problems all woodworkers run into.
     There is a mobile parts cart with removable outriggers to help feed sheet goods onto a tablesaw. There are wall-hung clamp racks and mobile clamp racks, modular free-standing lumber racks, overhead storage of flat veneers, and wall-hung lathe tool cabinets. Several designs are shown for chopsaw stations with extension tables, or with telescoping arms that ride inside smaller extension tables.
     The author shows how to build a beautifully complete router table with four pull-out bit drawers and four larger drawers for bulky storage (more routers.) Bill Hylton presents a mobile tool cabinet with six graduated drawers and describes how to lay out and cut french-fitted drawers to protect valued tools.
     The instructions for all these projects are quite complete, with tips on how to 'spring a curve' for a particular design, how to rout a mortise into end grain for loose tenon joinery, how to make a flush-trim baseplate for a router, or how to best fit dado joints in plywood. There are outfeed tables, extension tables, a tilting drill press table, and a rolling assembly table of torsion box construction, all with woodworking hints and tips included in the detailed instructions for building them. Cut lists, exploded line drawings and clear color photographs provide all you'll need to improve many areas in your own shop. It is a pleasure to get a look inside many of these workshops, and share the solutions these woodworkers have devised to problems we all encounter.

. . . Barb Siddiqui