The big decision – no, not that one

This isn’t about a new shop, but the decision about systainer storage. I’m down to two choices, and it’s all thanks to using some analytics and critical thinking.

My first step was to look at the current systainers I had, and what my happen in the near future. I have nine Festool systainers with their tools or accessories, and I have five Tanos grey systainers that I have purposed for my own. One is completely empty, one is for air tools, one is for 18v drills, one is for my multifunction tool, and the other has my belt sander and the old jigsaw. Now, except for the mutifunction tool, those Tanos systainers could stay or go. If I am out of room and a new Festool comes in, it could easily be replaced.

What I have now is the TS55, Domino DF500, ETS 150/3, DTS 400, Trion, two Domino systainers, the OF1400 and OF1010 routers. Now, the routers already have a home in the router table. The Domino systainers could easily be stacked on top of each other on a single drawer, as it would be rare to need both kinds at once. As far as the future, the most probable thing is that I would pick up another sander or two. The big stuff like the bigger track saw, router and Domino are extreme wishlist items and I don’t need to plan for those – if I’ve got the money to grab those, I’ll likely have a bigger space.

So, what all that means is that my initial plans were really more than I truthfully need. I had been planning for a space that would hold 18-24 systainers, when what I really need is room for no more than about 16. That’s a big difference.

The next thing to figure out was what sort of difference that would make to the storage I needed. I used Excel to list out the different sizes of the systainers I had, and those that I would reasonably hope to have. That done, I used the existing storage to figure out exactly how many systainers would fit in one ‘column’ of double-depth storage. I knew my overall height needed to be 43″, and that the height of the systainers and drawers could be measured by counting the shelf pin/drawer holes. 33 of them fit in the 43″ height, if I used no base or legs on the cabinet. The heights ranged from 5-11 holes, so the least amount that would fit would be six Systainer 4s per column. Two columns should get me what I need.

Now here’s where it gets tricky. Do I stick with my single-depth systainer storage or go for double-depth? Single-depth isn’t a very efficient use of space, but is less expensive in terms of construction and all the drawer slides I already have, and can be put really anywhere. Double-depth is much more efficient, but much more expensive in terms of material and all-new slides. It also is more restrictive in where it can go.

What I may end up doing if I go the route of double -depth is to build them as single depth, and combine them. Then they could come apart if needed down the line. It would also work to be able to build them in stages, and use some of the building material I already have and have made.

This one will have to be continued while I keep thinking about it. I’m leaning a certain way, but I need to think about what the ramifications will be and where things will go and problems of that nature.

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