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A website about how I set up my old, small, two-car garage for metal fabrication, carpentry and automotive work.

A Bad Idea Right Next to a Good One


Some of my ideas are good. This one is terrible. I bought three steel tables from a local business. They’re 1/8” steel framed with 2” L-stock that’s 1/4” thick. This one is 36” wide and 8’ long. I used one of them to make a fold-down welding table. I cut one up to be the backsplash behind my sink.

But then I had one more left.

It had come in very handy when I made the fence for my front yard.


And even though I was only into it for about $30, I was too cheap to sell it. So I came up with a way to use a Harbor Freight hoist to pull it up along the ceiling on four cables. It’s also secured with three chains when it’s parked, so there is some redundancy. But still: it’s a very heavy table suspended directly over my car. The damage from it falling would make $30 seem like, well, a stupid amount of money to be concerned over.

One of these days, things are going to go bad with it. I just know it. But I’m also stubborn. So it hasn’t gone anywhere yet.

Now, adjacent to it is something smarter. I’ve got a pair of 48”-wide Strong Hold cabinets that I’ve adapted for a lot of storage.


On the left, I took out the original shelves and replaced them with plywood dividers so that I could fit a total of 42 Ikea bins. I use them for everything from extension cords to chain pieces to battery chargers. All of the stuff that would be hard to find a place somewhere else.


On the right, the big shelves hold tools and paint and a few other random things. Then I put a bunch of cheap Harbor Freight bins on the doors. It’s a great way to organize fasteners. You pull the bin you need and take it to the job.


How strong are these cabinets? I’ve accidentally driven into them with my car, and it didn’t leave a mark. See? Stupid and smart, right next to each other.

Next: The Fold-Down Benches