I don’t think I’ve mentioned this on ManMade, but earlier this year, my wife and I bought our first (and hopefully last) home. It was a big deal, both emotionally and financially, and looking in one of the wildest and fastest changing real estate climates in the country, we got pretty lucky that our first offer was accepted. It’s a solid home that we can afford, and it sits in a close-in neighborhood that’s super liveable and great for walking, commuting by bike, and public transit. I totally love it.
And…of course, when you own your own home, you get to mess with it. No more landlords to tell you what to do, no more wasting time and money investing in customizing a place that you’ll only be in for a little while. And of course, as a DIY blogger, I had my sights set on the two most important spaces in the house: the garage and the basement. Over the next year, I’ll be “unfinishing” half of the basement to become my workshop, focusing mostly on woodworking and my other crafts and hobbies. That’s my space (my wife gets the other half of the basement), and so the garage gets to be the house’s shop. (We would never do something silly like store our car in it). The garage becomes the DIY center of the house: where we store our bikes and homebrew supplies, our gardening and landscaping tools, and our hardware and tools for working on projects around the house.
What’s the point of all this? That our garage needed a work surface. A big, solid space to do everything from planting and potting to household repairs to tinkering on our bikes. Not a full-on woodworking bench with face vises and dog holes, but a nice, big work table which could handle any project we decide to take on.
Last weekend, I finally made time to put it together, with some help from True Value hardware. It’s built from standard Doug fir construction lumber you can get at any hardware store or lumberyard, and is put together with a rock-solid bolt system that will allow it to be tightened up again, years after all the banging around.
I’m really happy with the results, and I wrote up the whole process, including downloadable plans, for ManMade’s sister site, Curbly.
Check out the full tutorial there, and feel free to ask me any questions about the process. Go make one!
How to Make the Ultimate Garage Workbench [Curbly.com]