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Model Engineering Glossary: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


10ft x 7ft inside dimensions is a good sized small workshop for the model maker/model engineer. You will need to be creative, but I manage to get a 10" bench lathe, mini-mill, 3" bench lathe, benchtop bandsaw and numerous other machines in the space.

We have a list of workshop suppliers on our shop and manufacturer pages.

Some things to consider:


You need to think about this at the very start, ideally before you start. What type of floor do you need?

  • Cast concrete - this is great if the plan is to have lots of heavy machines, but think about the fact that you may be stood on a cold floor for hours at a time.
  • Insulated cast concrete - probably the best solution, but means more digging out and more cost in construction, also you will need to reinforce the concrete to support heavy machines.
  • Wooden floor - simple, cheap, but can let the damp into the workshop so needs sealing and will also need insulating.

I have a concrete floor that I inherited with the workshop and I have laid a 3mm rubber sheet across the surface, provides grip, insulation and protects parts when I drop them....


My benches are constructed with a frame of 2x2" (50x50mm) with a 1/2" chipboard top surface.

The bench height I have is 36" (915mm) from the floor to the upper surface of the bench. I′m 5ft 11" tall and this bench height has worked for me for the last 30 odd years with no problems.

The upper chipboard surface is firstly coated with a thinned down polyurethane varnish. The smell of the varnish when it is drying is quite bad, so do this on a dry day with lots of ventilation.

You just cannot get enough storage space in a small workshop.

I made my own sets of drawers from MDF. These are reinforced with pine beams and also then used to hold the bench up.

I have made trays that fit in lots of the drawers so that I can get lots of tools in.


There is nothing worse than a freezing cold workshop. I insulated the walls with 100mm of rock wool and then fitted 12mm thick chipboard over the beams. The roof is just insulated with the foil coated bubble wrap, not so great but does help reflect the light back down.

I then have an oil filled electric radiator that has a peak of 800W. In the depth of winter I turn this heater on early in the morning and have to wait, so a tad under powered.


You do need lots of lighting. I have a large fluorescent tube down the centre of the workshop. This is then boosted by strategically position bulbs and a halogen directed at the chuck on the largest of the lathes.

I spend quite a lot of sunday afternoons in my workshop and so my children have named it my "Man Cave".

Some other workshops:

See also: Lathe, Mill.

Model Engineering Glossary: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z