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Home Machining

These photos show how the machine shop is arranged. Machining requires many tools and accessories, so it's necessary to keep everything well-organized.

This time, we splurged and bought heavy-duty base cabinets with ready-made tops, instead of using a kitchen sink base with a formed countertop, and making shallow drawers in the sink base, as we did in our former house. The drawers are full-suspension, and hold lathe and mill accessories, measuring tools, chucks, a rotary table, and a granite surface block.

The milling machine is bolted to the bench, but the lathe just sits on its rubber feet.

Screwed to the cabinet backsplash are two sets of T-handle hex wrenches, one in SAE sizes and the other in metric sizes.

On the wall behind the equipment bench are two shelves and a cabinet. The shelves hold frequently used tools like calipers, lathe cutting tools and holders, parallels for milling, end mills in a case, machinist's squares, steel rules, and a Kennedy toolbox to store small tools and accessories.

Finally – after four years of storing short raw material in cardboard cartons, and leaning long pieces in a room corner – I built a wooden box to hold everything. The tall end prevents long stock from marring the room walls. The box is constructed of ¾" oak plywood left over from making built-in bookshelves for our new house.

Updated October 12, 2017