A shop that shares it's space in the two-car garage
Photo of Stolarski's shop
Salvaged cabinets and a sturdy lumber rack provide plenty of storage.

As a youngster, Bob Stolarski loved hanging out with his dad in his workshop. He eventually became an engineer but continued his hobby by attending classes. After retirement, he faced the challenge of downsizing his shop to a small area of the two-car garage at his new townhouse in Arizona. But he was up for the challenge. He went to work on a solution that allowed him to share his woodworking space with the family car.

Photo of car and shop sharing garage
Bob doesn't mind sharing space with the family car. The Arizona climate allows him to park it outside when he's generating sawdust.
Photo of Stolarski's shop
With the major tools on wheels, Bob reconfigures the shop layout depending on the project. Overhead storage racks built just above the garage door tracks keep seasonal items out of the way.

He started by putting wheels under all the tool bases. Bob adjusts the shop layout depending on the project. When the car resides inside, the bandsaw and tablesaw separate the shop space from the parking area. A walkway separates these tools from the router table, drill press, jointer, air compressor, wall-mounted dust collector, and sander, all tucked against the outside wall. Ductwork also runs along this wall.

Drawing of shop layout
Photo of workbench
The full-featured workbench, with dogholes and two vises, provides a sturdy foundation for project assembly. The cabinet above keeps Bob's hand tools within easy reach.

Perhaps the most useful tool in Bob's shop is the folding workbench against the opposite wall. It mounts securely to a rail on the wall with three door hinges. The legs fold up and stay tucked thanks to rare-earth magnets. When the car is outside, up swings the workbench ready for action. In the shop space against the back wall, Bob added another small, scrapwood workbench that includes a face vise.

Since wall space is at a premium, Bob takes advantage of every square inch for storage. Above the workbench, he built a cabinet to store hand tools. The ceramic-coated metal doors allow Bob to use dry-erase markers and magnets for notes. Higher up on the wall, shelves keep paint and other finishes out of the way but readily accessible. He built a dedicated rack for aerosol cans and a custom-made charging station for his battery-operated tools. Bob made sure to leave space for storing household items closer to the garage door.

Clamp and lumber racks occupy the opposite wall at the shop end. Ceiling space is fair game, also. Racks above the garage door tracks store totes, suitcases, folding tables, and other bulky items.

Under the outfeed table for the tablesaw, Bob keeps blades and other accessories in a custom cabinet. You'll also find tablesaw sleds, a shop vacuum or two, plus a drum sander tucked under there.

Photo of cart
A hydraulic, adjustable-height cart for the drum sander tucks under the tablesaw outfeed table when not in use. Find one at woodmagazine.com/cart-table.

Bob made sure to include ample drawer space in some of the mobile bases. The sander, router table, and drill press table each hold the appropriate accessories for the tool. The metal storage cabinet near the hot water heater was a garage sale find. Bob put it to good use storing supplies.

And let's not forget the mini-fridge in the corner. "After a day of working in the shop, it's nice to crack open a cold one and reflect on the job at hand and what's next on the list!"  

Photo of Bob Stolarski
Bob learned woodworking from his dad. As a retired engineer, he's active in the Quailwood Woodworkers club sharing his knowledge with young and old alike.