Simple Shop Table Organizer




Introduction: Simple Shop Table Organizer

About: My girlfriend and I run a company called Deville's Workshop in Toronto, Canada. We build weird props for film and television and love this website - such a great resource for inspiration and discussion!

This very simple organizer is a quick build and helps you keep track of drill bits, pens, pencils and any other long skinny objects, plus, it keeps clutter from accumulating on your shop table. It's easy to build and is fun to work on with someone who is just learning how to use shop tools (chop saw, drill press, table saw, etc). As always though, power tools are not toys so please wear safety equipment and exercise caution when using them.

Tools and supplies required:

1) glue spreader
2) drill
3) tape measure & ruler
4) latex paint
5) finishing saw
6) 1 1/2" screws
7) right angle or quick square
8) marker
9) pin nailer

(not pictured)
Compound mitre saw
Table saw
Drill press
Insulation foam/PL300 glue
Scrap 3/4 plywood
Scrap 3/4 trim

Step 1: Step One: Foam Block

I used PL300 Foam glue to stick two pieces of dense insulation foam together. When they were dry I cut the finished block into a small rectangle (you can choose a size that is suitable for your space - mine was approximately 7"x16").

On the bottom of the block draw a grid. I found 1"x1" squares to work well for me.

Using a 1/8 drill bit I drilled out holes where the grid crossed lines.

Step 2: Step Two: Build the Frame

For the next step I built the frame. First I used a scrap piece of 3/4" plywood and cut it into four strips. The strips were cut as wide as the foam block was thick (ie; my foam block was approximately 2" thick so I cut the plywood strips 2" wide).

I measured the width of the foam block (approximately 7" wide) and cut two of the plywood strips on the compound mitre saw the same length.

The other two strips were cut the same length as the length of the foam block (approximately 16") PLUS an additional 1 1/2" to account for 3/4" overlap on each side. This extra length is where I drilled two holes and then countersunk them.

I lined up the strips where they attach to each other and pre-drilled into short strips of ply; this is to keep it from splitting when you screw into it later.

Step 3: Step Three - PL300 the Frame

For the third step I spread PL300 foam glue on the frame. I left one length of the pre-drilled plywood strip unattached until the glue was on the frame and the foam block was inserted, then I screwed the last piece on.

Step 4: Step 4: Trim the Frame

At this point in the project you could wash your hands and call it finished. I had some extra scrap trim lying around so I mitred the corners and glued it on. The trim was fairly warped so I used a pin nailer to keep it in place until the glue dried.

Step 5: Step 5: Paint the Piece

With reference to step 4, the project is now usable and ready to sit on your shop table. Because I have trouble leaving anything in my shop unpainted I cracked open two cans of grey latex paint (use only water-based paints on foam or it will melt it). I gave the organizer a quick coat of dark grey paint and then lightly dry-brushed on a layer of light grey. And there you have it!

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    7 years ago

    Try using different color tape on the non cutting part to mark metal/wood drill bits

    Rene Artois
    Rene Artois

    9 years ago on Introduction

    Don't get injured when sharp edges are pointing towards operator.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Brilliant and elegant.

    I am making one tomorrow, though with my CNC machine, as I need all the organizational help I can get!! {Mess Monsters are always running amok in my studio!]

    If you were closer, I'd give you free access to my CNC for posting this design.

    PS. May just make an Instructable that shows how to do this with a CNC.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    I also made a similar Jig completely out of wood. I used a left over stair tread from a project I was working on 5/4 " board 10" X 12" Used a pegboard to drill holes evenly and made the base a draw for small parts like blades for utility knife etc. Works out nicely.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    This is nice! I made something similar years ago, but mine is really ugly, just a huge chunk of wood with many holes in it.