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The wood shop floor
The importance of a smooth flat wood shop floor
Once you've cleared the space for your new wood shop, look down.
If you see a smooth, flat surface you are golden. Most of us dont though.
If you have a few cracks and the concrete is lifted here and there, you're normally fine with it if you just park your car there or fill the space with stuff you've collected over the years.
If you're planning to turn your garage into a wood shop though!!!
Think about it. This is a space where you'll be lifting heavy objects and there will often be spinning blades capable of ripping through oak in the blink of an eye. Just imaging what it could do to your outreached hand when you trip.
It's generally a good piece of advice to have a first aid kit in your shop too.
The floor of a wood shop should be smooth and flat for obvious safety reasons but there are other benefits to it.
If you figure out the perfect work surface height that works for you.
Hint - That's typically the height from the floor to your knuckles with your arms resting by your sides.
Now you can make the various pieces of wood shop furniture to a height that enables you to use them to complement each other.
One thing we highly recommend is a rolling outfeed table to support material that you run through a machine. They are a joy to use, safer and you'll get better cuts every time.
Don't forget, in a small shop, flexibility is key.
That scenario is easier when you know that no matter where your furniture is in the space, you can pull up your rolling outfeed and know the heights will match.
You also don't want rocking furniture either.
If you're making a piece of furniture like a dining table, How can you make sure that it won't rock on a flat floor if you don't have a flat surface big enough to build it in the first place. Imaging delivering a piece to a client just to find that the base isn't flat. Oops!
Another benefit of a good floor is it'll take much less time to clean up at the end of the day when you aren't navigating cracks and lifted concrete with your vacuum.
By the way - Don't ever sweep your shop floor. It'll just throw all that dust into the air and it'll rest back down again. You'd be wasting time and adding to shop fatigue.
Your shop vac is great for sucking dust from a table saw but it'll take forever to vacuum the entire floor. It just isn't designed for the task.
Treat yourself to a wood shop floor vacuum cleaner...
Having the ability to remove the canister and probe around under shop furniture is a major plus.
If time and budget are tight, you'll have to make the best of a bad situation. Grind back any high spots, fill the cracks and give the floor a lick of paint.
If you have the money, a nice new garage floor that is smooth and flat will make all the difference to your quality of life, fatigue levels and the enjoyment you get from your wood shop.
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That's how we keep the lights on around here... Sometimes...