I have had a pile of car repairs over the last 6 months or so, pretty much every free moment not spent at work, practicing, gigging, or with my wife, has been spent under a hood.
The results are coming to fruition, but my shop was getting to a state where I couldn’t find most of my tools, drawers were so disorganized that I couldn’t open / close them, and well I knew there was a floor in there somewhere, just not sure where.
I spent several hours this past week, mostly rounding up tools from 2 car trunks, closets in the house, strewn all over, and under my major shop tools, under the seat in the truck, etc… and I still can’t find the floor.
What did I accomplish?
After months of being MIA, I found my 1/4” Craftsman socket set, or at least most of it (the 3/32” shallow socket is missing) hiding under a pile of shavings under the lathe.
Found and put back my shallow, and deep well Husky 1/4” drive sockets. I am missing my 1/4” drive 6pt Husky 10mm deep socket. It flipped off of my ratchet, and QUICKLY ran down the driveway and into a storm drain. I need to buy a new one…
My Metric, and SAE, 3/8” drive shallow, 3/8” drive deep, 1/2” drive shallow, 1/2” drive deep, and 1/2” drive shallow impact sockets are all organized, on their respective socket rails, or in the factory socket holders if they came with one.
My specialty sockets (Torx, Allen, Tamper Resistant Torx, etc…. adapters, universal joints etc… are on their appropriate socket rails.
My breaker bars (the original 1/2” drive Snap On, and my new to me 3 weeks ago Pittsburgh 3/8” drive are in the drawer they belong in.
My socket extensions, speed wrench, ratchets etc… are back where they belong.
I put away my HF Digital Multimeter.
I FOUND the Blue Point Digital Multimeter that took to missing months ago under a pile of shavings behind the work bench..
I found missing screwdrivers, Snap On, Stanley, and Pittsburgh, so all price points were found yet again, and put back where they belong!
I found my missing SAE Pittsburgh and Metric Eklind allen key sets. These went back where they belong.
I found my SAE Stanley Proto, and Metric Craftsman feeler gauge sets. These went back where they belong.
I found my long missing Craftsman insulated handle slip joint pliers (My favorite go to pliers) These went back where they belong.
I found my pick up magnet. This got put up where it belongs.
I put back together, and put away my drilling accessories such as drill bits, driver bits, forstner bits, and hole saws. All the pieces are where they belong.
A small sampling of the tools found shows my cleaning illustrates why I need to keep on top of this! The screwdrivers and allen key sets are parts of fuller sets, and as such cannot be replaced one piece at a time, meaning this could have been expensive!
I spent a good bit of time reorganizing my peg board on my shop cabinets to more efficiently store my tools while allowing as full as possible operation of the cabinet doors.
Finishes, solvents, primers, and fillers were sorted, the bad stuff was put into a box for hazardous waste recycling, the good stuff put back into rotation.
My floor jack, and jack stands were organized out of the way next to the lathe.
My lathe tools were cleaned up, sharpened, and put away in their cases, or in most cases, the cardboard box they came in. I need to work on storage for them still…
I did take the compressed air hose, and blow gun out, using a respirator of course, and the ambient filter running, and blew down the lathe, and bench top tools.. Now it’s been over year since i have used the scroll saw which is on top of the stack, how on earth did I get shavings on top of that?!
I finally put back in its proper place the ball joint tool, AC manifold gauge set, cooling system tester, etc…
There is far more that was done, cleaned, reorganized, BUT it ts too much to go into. Long story short though, I probably am about 1/4 of the way through shop cleanup, which is a disgusting statement, but at the very least, I have found at least $600.00 worth of tools that I thought were gone for good.
I know what caused this mess, and it's me. I get done with a project that is outside of my shop, and I simply jam tools back into the shop door, close the door and call it done. I do NOT do what I am supposed to do, and clean up my tools and put them back properly. this MUST change.
Likewise, my "place where things go" s getting crowded. My automotive tool box is housing far too many plumbing tools etc... I need to build a couple of tool totes specifically designed to house tools for specific types of jobs. one tote to hold plumbing specific tools and supplies, another to hold electrical tools and supplies etc...
I have a LONG way to go with the cleanup, but believe it or not, I am making good progress. I have GOT to get a handle on this so I can actually use my shop!