How To Setup A Woodshop In An Apartment

Published Categorized as Woodworking Business Tagged

It’s more than possible to setup a small and efficient wood shop in an apartment space.When you think about it initially it might seem impossible. But to the enthusiast, it is completely do-able, as thousands of woodworkers have proven.

Here are some time tested pointers that will allow you to set up a wood shop in an apartment. 

  1. Sound and dust are your two main enemies. You will have to deal with them with all resources available to you. 
  2. Use only small power tools, if you use any. Work more with hand tools to cut out the noise and dust. Noise is something that will easily upset your neighbours and even small power tools like a circular saw and a drill can be pretty noisy. 
  3. If you do need to use power tools, work on insulating the workshop. Expenses can vary depending on the size of the wood shop and the materials used. You can pad the walls with thick insulation material and use rubber sheeting for the floors. There are many reasonably priced insulation materials available in the market. Of course, ‘doing-it-yourself’ will further cut down the costs.  
  4. Minimize the dust in your wood-shop by using a good dust collector or better still by not producing much dust to begin with.
    Typically power tools product more dust than hand tools. This is especially important if you are living in the same apartment.
    Seal your doors and windows that open into the rest of the house so that no dust spaces through cracks and spaces that are usually present around doors and windows. You will also have to seal them for noise. Even the sound of persistent hammering can be a big disturbance for the rest of the family. 
  5. Work with small projects. That’s right, you cannot make large projects in an apartment woodshop. For one thing, how will you get it out of flat once it’s done? But this is not a bad thing when it comes to making money with your wood working projects. You can make a great income making and selling small wood crafts. Small wood crafts are perfect for selling online and there is a great market for them. 
  6. Buy more books, subscribe to magazines or join wood working causes that teach you about working with hand tools. You will be surprised at the things you can achieve with a few chisels, saws and planers. The going will be slow you can do just about anything you can with a power tool. 
  7. Choose selective wood working techniques. A lathe comes in mind. You can make beautiful wood crafts by wood turning like bowls and candle stands. There are high selling crafts. A lathe doesn’t make much noise, neither does the wood turning process. This might be a great wood working business to setup in an apartment.
    Similarly, another wood working business model you can run from an apartment is stripping/restoring old furniture. If you want to start a wood working business from an apartment, look at small but high value wood crafts. A baby crib is one such wood craft. Cribs can easily be made in limited space, with only hand tools and they sell for a premium price.
This is a pretty great video showing the setup of a woodworking workshop because it shows a realistic location of a small space garage. There are a some quick pointers that will go a long way into turning your small space into a workshop including putting in ventilation and fatigue free flooring. Have a look.

If you run a woodshop from an apartment, or have some questions about starting one, do post your comments below.

1 comment

  1. Hi, I’m from Brazil.
    My woodshop is in laundry of my apartament. I don’t have a system of dust colector, but this os very important. Sound is a problem for me. My power tools are jig Saw, hand drill and a small dremel. I have much hand tools.
    Tanks for text.

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