John Heisz’s ibuildit Shop

John Heisz is a woodworker in Ontario, Canada who has a YouTube channel and website to share his creations. He took the time to show us his shop. Here it is:

My shop is a detached garage with a floor space of about 13′ x 26′. I renovated it to use as my workshop after moving to my new house last May. It’s smaller than my old shop, but that hasn’t been much of a problem, since I don’t make very many large projects. The real challenge was to organize and use the space optimally, and I’ve been doing a lot of projects lately to make that happen.
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
To start off, here’s a wide view of the shop from the front door as you walk in:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
The tour begins at the front door and goes counter-clockwise around the room. Right beside the door is sheet storage, just leaning up against the wall. I don’t have any plans for a sheet storage rack, since it would probably take up more room than I could spare. Generally, I only have as much on hand as I need for the project I’m currently doing.

Next to the sheet storage is my dust collector. It was a recent project to rebuild it in this vertical configuration and it is connected to my chop saw and table saw. It’s main purpose is to capture the fine dust that these machines generate:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
Next to the dust collector is my chop saw station:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
It is the second most used tool in my shop, next to the table saw. It has a hood that catches most of the dust from the saw, and a drawer that the dust falls into.

In the bottom, there are two tip out bins for blade storage:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
Next to the chop saw is the lathe:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
I don’t use it much, but it’s invaluable when needed. It doesn’t take up much space, and I can pull it out when I’m ready to use it. I still need to make a wall mounted tool cabinet for the turning tools, and that’s a future project.

My drill press cabinet is on the back wall of the shop, right next to the drill press:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
All of the drilling accessories are kept here.

Stepping into the room a bit for my homemade router table:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
It has bit storage on either side and wheels to easily move it out of the way when I need more space.

Stepping back, another wide view of the room from this end of the shop:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
In the corner, my big homemade band saw:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
Originally built for resawing only, I’ve recently put a thinner blade on it to use for other cuts.

Next is my workbench with three vises (quick release vice, wooden vice) and some handy clamp storage on the front:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
I just finished building the drawer unit that fits under it:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
The drawers hold nearly every tool I regularly use:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
There are a total of seven drawers of varying depth. The bottom ones are the deepest and hold larger power tools. The one at the top has dividers for a variety of tools and things for measuring and marking.

Tucked in against the wall next to the workbench is my newly completed planer stand:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
It uses a regular plastic trash can as the collection bin for the shavings.

Above that on the wall is a rack for my dado set:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
It came in a plastic holder, but that was a bit too inconvenient to use, so I made this instead.

Beside that is the heated storage cabinet for glue and finishes:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
Nice when your shop is in a cold climate. It keeps the contents at room temperature, ready to use.

On the floor next to it, is my sanding station:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
It has my homemade disk sander and a Rigid spindle sander on top, and the drawers store sand paper, disks and sanding accessories. Behind the door is an old shop vac that is used for dust collection for both tools.

My downdraft sanding table is up against the garage door:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
It has lots of drawers and bins filled with every kind of fastener I might need. On top of it is my belt sander platform, and on the door above that is most of my homemade clamps:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
Moving on. my steel wood rack filled with short pieces of wood:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
The rack is the right size for short pieces of wood that I use on a regular basis. Next to it is a built-in shelf unit used to store some of my jigs and other bulkier items.

Below the corner unit is a roll out bin used for short scraps of wood:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
Nice to put space like this to good use.

Last, but not least, is my table saw:
John Heisz's ibuildit Shop
Right in the middle of the shop. Hands down the most used tool, it is a solid performer since I finished rebuilding it.

That completes the tour of my workshop, and I hope you enjoyed it. At some point in the future, I hope to build a new shop from the ground up, or I may just add onto this one. It really depends on how well this one continues to work for me.


Don’t forget to subscribe to John’s YouTube channel and check out his website!

Update: John recently made a shop tour video for us as well.




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  1. Rotimi Morgan

    Hey John,
    Thanks for the video. I am thinking of converting the room meant for Laundry to my Workshop as I am too old , or lazy to go to my factory now. Your video is going to be my inspiration to start today 5th January 2015. I hope that I can follow your example and produce something I can be proud of , so that I can share with others. Thanks for the inspiration.
    Regards. Rotimi Morgan.
    P.S.If this goes to Jays instead, THANKS all the same, I am not too good at reading and understanding my Internet devices. Pl pass the comments anyway.

  2. Andrew Zuckerman

    Hi John, how much would you sell that shovel/concrete knife for, it’s beautiful.

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