Tool Pegboard Reorganization

I’ve had a bunch of pegboards in my shop for over five years, and I’ve figured out what works and what doesn’t. I love that a lot of my tools are in direct view and can quickly be accessed. I didn’t love a few areas that I go to frequently though. The first wall I wanted to tackle looked like this.

The main problem was the hammers. They’d become crowded and it was a pain to pull one out when it was second or third in line. I moved all of the other tools up on the wall and lined up my hammers on the assembly table.

After taking measurements, I cut up oak pieces from my old kitchen light box. This storage shelf came together pretty quick and has room for even more hammers. Now I can quickly grab any hammer without disturbing the others.

Here’s the updated wall.

The next wall to the right was making poor use of space, especially since I don’t grab some of the saws very often. Take a look and see they were nearly occupying half of the wall. The files never worked well on those individual hooks either, which always pulled out of the wall.

By moving stuff around I was able to get several more saws, like my Japanese pull and coping, as well as other tools up on the wall.

Over to the right again was tools used primarily for measuring and alignment. In February of 2018 I made a shelf for the squares, which has taken up way too much space. I really liked the grooves in that shelf, but the squares weren’t secure enough. Here’s how the wall looked before I touched it.

I reorganized everything else first and then made a new shelf that was longer so I could add slots in each groove to drop one of each square’s legs down.

Huge improvement and look how much extra space I have for more tools! I need to get myself a nice set of chisels.

Last up was the pegboard on my bench.

I’d been using four of the pegboard holders made for screwdrivers here and don’t care for them; the holes are too big and the spacing is too wide. All you need is scrap plywood with holes drilled in it, which allows you to run two deep and have plenty of expansion room. I also made a holder to store the wood carving set that had been unopened in a box buried on the bench for years.

So much better. Now I can tackle the reorganization of my shop closet.

More Hand Tools

Last night I completed a huge task in my new basement workshop by doing a first pass at organizing all of my hand tools. My toolbox (so to speak) has expanded a lot in the last few months. For reference, I posted the photo below in May of 2015 when I setup a tool bench in the garage.


Fast forward 2 years to May of this year, when I added more pegboard.


I’ve been acquiring a lot from garage and estate sales in the last few months. When I transplanted everything to the basement it was the perfect time to organize everything. Here is what I ended up with last night.


The lighting really is terrible down there. I think I’m going to take out the drop ceiling to give me more space and put in LED lighting. Anyway, as you can see my pegboard area more than doubled!

I kept thinking about two things as I was figuring out where to put everything. First, I wanted like things grouped together. Measuring tools like squares, levels, and tape measures are all together. Cutting tools like saws, knifes, tin snips, and scissors got grouped. You get the idea. The second thing was what Adam Savage refers to as first order of retrievability; almost every hand tool can be accessed without having to move something else.

I can’t even begin to explain how satisfying this process was. I’m not married to the result though. As I use the workshop I’ll see if it makes sense to move things around and iterate.