How to organize new shop? O.O

So, my school is renovating the shop b/c a lot of the tools were…old. ahem ancient ahem Our shop is now smaller…because the school is adding a computer room. :frowning:
ANYWAYS, my school contains two teams, and it is now time for organization skills to come! :ahh: However, before renovation…pretty much everything was thrown out by the construction workers (even batteries and battery chargers). :eek: I am now in charge of my team’s (and possibly the other’s) organization of the shop, and am wondering how other teams organize their space so that a lot of people can fit into a shop with enough room to build a robot.
THANKS! :smiley: <3

The biggest problem will most likely be getting a lot of people can fit. The shop we have is ~20 ft x 30 ft, but with tables and machines, we end up with a total ‘work area’ of ~15ft x 15ft. With people moving about it can feel crowded fast.

Our shop is set up with most storage and tools around the outer walls. Some tools are on counters with storage underneath, other hand tools are just hanging on a pegboard or stay in the tool chest we take to competition. Our shop is ‘L’ shape, and in the middle of one ‘leg’ we have big machinery such as the chop saw, table saw, shop vac, and band saws. In the intersection of the ‘legs’ we have a large table that we use for most of our work. It is small, but we do get by.

My team has managed to get in the good graces of our schools resident metalshop teacher, so we have quite a large and robust shop with almost every tool we could need plus a ~20x30 foot empty space to test drive the robot. Even still, we still sometimes have trouble getting everyone in there to do what they need to during build season :yikes:

First consider what tasks are involved in building a robot, and make a space for those. Then consider the tools you have or will soon get, and create a safe working area for those. Lastly, storage for tools, materials, etc.

'Clean" tasks such as CAD, other design, web research, most award submissions, pre-machining layout, and so on can be done ‘somewhere else’ (like that computer room). Actual robot assembly takes place with a few people around the robot, so have a table a little bigger than a robot (like 3 x 4) with space around it and shelves or drawers beneath for robot assembly. (for 2 teams you need 2).

Then another table (or 2) for non-robot assembly tasks. Keep them small, too, and storage beneath.

Machines all need a clear work area for safety. Don’t be afraid to put machines close to each other, just understand that one may interfere with the simultaneous use of another. Also make sure you have electrical outlets for the machines! (If not, ask the school for more).

Make a scale drawing (1" = 1’) of the shop, machinery, furniture, and so on, and play with those to come up with a good layout. Then, limit who can be in the shop by what tasks they are doing: If not absolutely required to be in the shop, go somewhere else for that part of the task.

Put any milling machines in a corner. Stops chips from getting everywhere IME.
Outlets are good throughout the shop, especially on tables and such for laptops.
Have some brooms in a corner too.

I had a post on what team 294 did when we moved back into our shop last year. Hopefully this helps

I have always felt that too many people should not be in a machine shop area unless they are operating a machine. May I suggest some false walls to keep people away from any heavy machines because a room full of people crowing large heavy machinery can be a serious safety hazard fast.