Setting up a woodworking shop has always been a wonderful challenge. It’s a little like buying a new house: the end result is great, but all the hoops you have to jump through to get there are a real pain. Storage and effective use of limited space are two common problems that seem to plague everyone from the professional woodworker to the pure hobbyist.
Waterloo Industries, the trusted maker of toolboxes of all shapes and sizes, has now addressed those problems. Their new ToolDock modular workshop system is an impressive answer in size, scope and effectiveness.
Made from 18 gauge steel and sporting 1 1/4″ MDF work tops, these storage cabinets and workbench units were clearly a big winner at the International Hardware Show in Chicago this year. A truly modular system, ToolDock combines storage, work surfaces and dust collection in each offering (a router table, tool station, multi station and shop bench * just to name a few). Externally mounted heavy-duty levelers for each cabinet are an example of the details that make these units quality offerings. Because they were designed to work together in many different combinations, almost any workspace can benefit from one or more of the units available. And if your shop makes use of several benchtop power tools, the Tool Crib and Multi Station are a very useful option. The Tool Crib allows you to store your pre-mounted (mounted to a provided 1/2″ MDF tool insert) benchtop tools in a vertical storage configuration. When you want to use one of those benchtop tools, the tool insert sits snug into an opening on the Multi Station, with lockdown hardware to properly secure it. Slick as that, you are ready to work. When you are done, just put the whole thing back in the Tool Crib and grab the next benchtop tool — no muss, no fuss.
The worktops specifically designed to fit into a corner are an effective use of space that often is under utilized. Many of these cabinet configurations are mobile, using heavy-duty casters, and each unit is easily assembled in under an hour.
All in all, this new system offered by Waterloo is a sound answer to a problem that all of us are faced with from time to time. It is specifically designed to support woodworkers, but it is easy to see how its reach will be broader than our little corner of the world.