stat tracker for tumblr

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

The Compliance Station


I call it that because the hammers and the inch-thick bench top make it easy to ‘convince’ something that’s not quite fitting that it’s time to shape up. It’s nice to have a bench where you can pound on stuff.

This the first bench I did in the second wave of work on my garage. I’d splurged on a big piece of steel, and I came up with an idea for storage up above that would give the thing a somewhat retro feel.


The piece of steel weighs 510 pounds, so it was not easy to get out of my Jeep and onto the cabinet. And the cabinet I put it on was my first Strong Hold. It is half-size and only 36” wide, but still weighs 360 pounds.


Up above, I made a cabinet with one side curved, so the doors on the cabinet across from it could still swing out.


The cabinet that holds the hammers was something I had sitting around. The reason for putting the hammers up there is that I simply don’t like the way hammers sit in a drawer. Unless you’ve got all kinds of space for them, they end up tangled together. This way, I can always see which one I want before I reach for it.


The vise on this bench is a Wilton 1765. I was testing a process that prints on aluminum plate, and my test was to make a nameplate for this vise. The original had been the one with the newer Wilton logo. (Wilton, if you’re reading this? Your new logo is ugly.) It’s a little goofy to make your own corporate nameplate without the company paying you to do it. But that’s what I did.


The cabinet sitting next to this bench is a Lyon, which is similar to the Strong Holds, but one step down in thickness. It’s a good cabinet, but it was too tall when I got it, so I had to cut a belt section out of it and weld it back together. If you look closely, you can see that the distance between the bottom hinge and the center is shorter than the same space below the top hinge.


I keep most of my power tools (drills, saws, sanders) in these two cabinets.


Next: The Main Bench