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· Registered
800 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In your work area, what do you keep nearby? Obviously a soldering iron/pencil/torch, brass and wire but what else do you keep in your work area that you need?

I keep the normal assortment of materials and tools but some items that I just could not live without are pencil, paper and a trash can
I'm constantly throwing stuff in the trash can, it's right at my feet the whole time. Pencil and paper aren't always used in the normal fashion. I also use the pencil point to spear bearings and stuff like that. The paper is used as a place mat just as often as it is written on. I don't lose track of tiny parts because they're sitting on a piece of white paper. Paper is also used to protect stuff.

What items do you keep on hand that others might not consider using?

· Registered
4,591 Posts
Oh I like this!
I won't bother sending a photo of my bench cos it looks EXACTLY like Phil's. Except I don't have any stripped down Ks motors about at the moment. But I'd love to see more pics of other people's benches. And I will photo mine if you want!
I also keep plenty of alcohol to hand, for refreshment and cleaning purposes. Great for scrubbing away flux'n'stuff. With an old toothbrush which is also an essential.
Also a large bale of superfine wire wool for all cleaning and abrasive requirements.
Tweezers- all shapes and sizes.
Big pack of cotton buds, cotton balls, toilet roll.
Every conceivable type and grade of superglue and epoxy.
Rubber non-slip mat which provides a good grippy surface which retains any small items accidentally dropped. Not good for soldering on though. For that I have my trusty SCD jig.
Dremel with cut-off disc ready installed. And large stock of replacement discs.
Centre punch
Toothpicks for an amazing number of ad hoc reasons.
Tin of Brasso
Large sandwich and big bucket of nuts. Salted or dry-roasted.
CD player.

· Dennis Samson
807 Posts
I don't have a close-up of my workbench to post , but it also looks like Phil's most of the time. My work area, however, looks like this:

My Slot car stuff has to share space with my Radio Control stuff (this picture was taken before I returned to slot racing). All of that on the left side is a "museum collection" ranging back to about 1976 or so - the cars I'm still using are on the right. My slot track is now located in the roof on the right side. I don't have a reserved spot yet for my slot collection - still looking for a suitable display/storage system.

Oh, and there's space for two 1:1 scale cars too (unlike most American garages!)

· Premium Member
5,542 Posts
I am both embarrased and in a strange way a little proud of my work area!!

The Black & Decker Workbox is where I cut, file, drill, solder etc and as you can see I've carefully laid out various tools on the floor as I ran out of space.

My "clean area"
on the workbench is where I fiddle and fettle and generally think about what I'm doing while I gaze out at the garden, once again you will note the orderly arranged tools and materials. Like Phil I always maintain a minimum area of clear space to work comfortably!!

I work in bursts of activity and everything just gets dropped where I last used it and I always know where everything is.

The plastic bags contain GF bodies that are projects in the thinking stage and also sit there in the clutter as every now and again you have to pick it up for a bit more thought and planning.

I do have a strict cleaning schedule and generally have a tidy up at least once a year - and afterwards can never find anything.


· Registered
2,065 Posts
Organized Bill?

You know I could have used that leather hole puncher of yours there David. Just been trying to make some headlamps for the Xzylon - hence the paper punch on the bench:

As you can see, vice and drill press to the left (sometimes a bench grinder lives there too), general work area with magnifier, stereo, kids toys awaiting repair and general junk at the back. Top draw has a selection of pliers, cutters, files, drills, glue, draw 2 projects near front of queue, draw 3 bits of brass, wire, plasticard, draw 4 clamps and general soldering stuff.

Unusually there are no coffee cups in sight ...and yes I do like Muller rice!

· Brian Ferguson
4,318 Posts
There's a philosophy about kitchen design that the 3 prime activity areas (fridge, stove, and sink) should be in a triangle of some maximum dimension. I carry that over to my hobby work area.

I have a "clean" space which happens to also be my computer desk which is why I am writing this. The car resides here as it progresses, along with parts like motor, tires, etc., which, once chosen for a project, live in a multi-drawer fishing tackle box to one side. I design, ponder, and do general assembly in this location.

The second prime activity area is about 15 feet away and is one of two benches in my shop. Drill press, Dremel, grinder, soldering irons, files, pliers, etc. live there along with supplies like brass sheet and tube, piano wire, etc. The rough stuff happens here.

The third prime activity area in my "hobby workspace triangle" is located about 15 feet from both of the above areas and is the beer fridge.

Like most of the above, my first two areas are incredibly well organized to a hobbyist but appear like a scrap heap to the untrained eye.
The third area is quite well organized though!

· Registered
4,591 Posts
Not wishing to hijack this GREAT thread, but Rail Racer has just given me a fab tip for headlights- might save you a bit of fiddling about, JP;
Check out MV products on Google. Head-and tail-lights of every size and colour. Very nice, chrome backed. Look terrific. Just about to send off a BIG order for all my ongoing projects, plus a few for improving old ones.
Back to workbenches...
I find a small disc sander a very useful item, too. Currently saving up for a new lathe. Wobbly Unimat no longer viable....
Gascar- your set up has me green eyed. Do you rent out space? Could you use an apprentice?

· Alan Tadd
4,041 Posts
Well Gentlemen, with the exception of Dennis, I think you should all be ashamed of yourselves!.

My work area, on the other hand is imaculate, simply because all I've got is a small square area on the kitchen worktop, which has to be cleaned, (scrubed) following each small segment of time i'm allowed to use it.

I don't consider this to be a long term solution, as when my shed is completed, construction will transfer to a small corner where I can be as untidy as you lot!.


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