Flipping my lid for Flip-Top Tool Stands

Living in Vancouver you’re lucky to make rent on a regular basis, and since beggars can’t be choosers I feel pretty lucky to have any workspace at all. That being said, I grew up in a detached home in the burbs where space wasn’t much of an issue and we could pack-rat to our heart’s content. Since that isn’t the case at my current domicile, space-saving, organization, and efficiency are key. I also have an “Always-Out” philosophy: when the time comes to get something creative done, I don’t want to have to dig to the bottom of a drawer to find the right tools – I want my tools out and accessible so that they inspire me to make easy changes in my environment and tackle that creative task. This philosophy applies to my bench-top tools as well. That’s why these space-saving Flip-Top Tool Stands are such a great idea!

There are several well-developed plans for flip-top tool stands available online (and I’ve included a short list at the end of the post), but the outline of the project is pretty simple.

Flip Top Tool Stand Basics

  1. Build a reasonably stable cart that’s with the front and back half enclosed.
  2. Add a solid top that rotates on a central axle.
  3. Add large locking casters (two locking swivel casters up front  and two standard casters at back is best).
  4. Then mount your tools and find a means of locking the top in place for use (I’ve just drilled some holes to cram carriage bolts in for now).

I’ve built these two carts as prototypes for the more permanent versions I expect to build in a couple of years, and so I’ve used a lower grade plywood than I’d choose for the finished product, chosen a rather barbaric means for locking the tops, and haven’t been as careful to flush the top or fix the axle as I could have been. Before I commit to the more expensive materials and more careful crafting I wanted to see how they fit into my workflow and if there are any alterations I’d like to plan into the next iteration. So far I’ve got to admit I fucking love these flip-top tool stands and for the first time, I’m feeling a sting of regret at my build fast and iterate strategy! I’m ready for the final versions now!

I promise that when I rebuild them I’ll do a full instructional post so that the wary among you have something a bit more concrete to follow when you decide to add these to your workshop.

Other builds of Flip-top Tool Stands:

  • Fix this, Build that has the most popular build by far.
  • Jeffery Park has an excellent build video that outlines everything you need – though he definitely overbuilds and I avoid pocket screws because I find them frustrating and aesthetically unpleasant (yup, even in my rough cut prototypes!).
  • Art at WordsNWood has a solid build log and keeps it simple.

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