How to build a compact, foldable workbench for a small garage or shed?

Are you a DIY enthusiast hampered by a lack of space in your garage or shed? Have you been dreaming of a workstation where you could carry out your projects, but are concerned about the limited room? Well, fret no more. We have a solution for you – a compact, foldable workbench. This type of workbench is not only small and easy to build, but it also conveniently folds up against the wall when not in use, freeing up valuable space. So let’s dive in, and we’ll show you how to build this dream workbench, step-by-step.

1. Planning Your Workbench

Before you start building, it’s important to make a plan. You need to consider the size of your workbench, the tools you’ll need, and the materials required. Planning is an essential step in DIY projects, enabling you to visualize the final product and avoid potential pitfalls.

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When planning the size of your workbench, consider the space in your garage or shed. The beauty of a foldable workbench is its ability to conserve space. It should be large enough to conduct your work but small enough to fold up neatly against the wall.

Next, determine the tools and materials required. Common tools for this project include a saw, drill, screws, tape measure, and sandpaper. Materials will largely consist of lumber. Precisely what you will need depends on your specific plans.

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2. Cutting the Wood

Once the plans are in place, the next step is to cut the wood to the required size. Use a table saw or circular saw for the best results. Remember to measure twice and cut once. The last thing you want is to waste material due to incorrect measurements.

Start with the top of the workbench. This is typically the largest piece. Once you’ve cut the top, move on to the legs and other smaller pieces. Take care when cutting the legs, as they need to be the same length to ensure stability.

Keep safety in mind when using power tools. Wear protective gear, including safety glasses and gloves. Always cut away from your body and maintain a safe distance from the saw blade.

3. Assembling the Workbench

After cutting the wood to the right sizes, it’s time to assemble the workbench. Start by attaching the legs to the top of the table. Make sure they are sturdy and aligned correctly to avoid any instability.

Next, install any additional parts, such as shelves or drawers. Remember, the goal is to have a workbench that is not only compact and foldable but also practical and efficient. An extra shelf or drawer can be a valuable space to store your tools.

Finally, attach the hinges that will allow your workbench to fold against the wall. Make sure they are strong enough to support the weight of the bench. Test the folding mechanism to ensure it works smoothly.

4. Securing the Workbench to the Wall

The last step is attaching your workbench to the wall. This is what makes your workbench truly space-saving. When not in use, it can be folded up and out of the way, leaving your garage or shed free for other purposes.

To secure your workbench to the wall, you’ll need a sturdy set of brackets. Install the brackets on the wall first, ensuring they are level and securely fastened. Then, attach the workbench to the brackets.

Remember to choose a wall that can handle the weight of the workbench. Brick or concrete walls are best. If you’re attaching the workbench to a drywall, make sure to anchor the brackets into the wall studs.

5. Finishing Touches

Once the workbench is assembled and secured to the wall, you may want to add some finishing touches. If you used raw wood, you might consider sanding it down for a smoother surface. You could also apply a coat of paint or varnish for a professional finish.

Consider adding a pegboard above the workbench for additional tool storage. This not only optimizes your workspace but also keeps your tools within easy reach.

Building a compact, foldable workbench for your small garage or shed is not a daunting task. With careful planning, the right tools and materials, and a bit of elbow grease, you can create a functional and space-saving workstation. Remember, the key is to tailor the workbench to your specific needs and the space available. Happy building!

6. Customizing Your Workbench

Now that you’ve built your folding workbench, you might want to personalize it to better suit your needs. This is where your creative DIY skills can shine. The versatility of a workbench lies in its ability to be adapted to suit various projects.

Incorporate a heavy-duty vise to help hold workpieces steady while you saw, drill, or sand. The vise should be positioned at a corner of the workbench for maximum accessibility and efficiency.

Another practical addition to your workbench could be casters. They will make your workbench mobile, allowing you to move it around your small workshop as needed. Ensure the casters are lockable to keep the bench stable when in use.

One more customization worth considering is the inclusion of a series of pocket holes along the edge of the workbench. These holes can be used to hold clamps or to mount different tools, making your workspace even more versatile.

For the family handyman who often works with long pieces of wood or metal, adding foldable extension wings to the ends of the workbench can be a game-changer. These extensions provide extra work space when needed and neatly fold away when not in use.

7. Maintaining Your Workbench

To ensure your DIY folding workbench remains useful and efficient for many years to come, maintenance is key. Regular checks, cleaning, and minor repairs will keep your workbench in optimal condition.

Start by keeping the surface of your workbench clean. After each project, wipe it down to remove dust, debris, and any leftover materials. This will not only keep your workspace neat but also reduce the risk of accidents.

Tighten any loose screws or bolts regularly. Over time, the heavy-duty use of the workbench can cause some parts to become loose. Regular checks and adjustments will ensure stability and safety.

If you have painted or varnished your workbench, check for any areas where the finish has worn away. Reapply as needed to maintain protection from moisture and other potential damages.


Building a compact, foldable workbench for a small garage or shed is a rewarding DIY project. Not only does it provide a dedicated workspace for all your DIY tasks, but it efficiently utilizes the space available through its wall-mounted and foldable design.

By following these workbench plans and adding your own personal touches, you will have a space-saving, customizable, and efficient workstation. Whether you’re a seasoned family handyman or a DIY enthusiast starting their first project, this simple workbench is a great addition to any small workshop.

Take pride in the fact that you’ve built this functional and space-saving piece yourself. Now, it’s time to unfold your work table, pull up a stool, and start on your next DIY project. Happy building!