View Full Version : What do you wear in the shop?

03-12-2005, 07:39 PM
I have a terrible habit of wiping my hands off on my jeans. I also tend to pick up all kinds of crud, oil and grease on my clothes.

My wife just bought me an apron. Its an outdoor grilling kind but it will work fine.

It just started me thinking about what you guys wear? Overalls? Aprons? Same ole ratty sweatshirt and jeans?

Allan Waterfall
03-12-2005, 07:52 PM
I wear a plain woodwork type apron with the pocket on the front,It gets quite filthy.
Only problem I've found is the pocket collects chips and if you aren't careful you can put it on back to front(senior moment) http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif and transfer the muck on to your clothes.
Since the last wash I've taken to wearing mine back to front so the pocket's on the inside.


03-12-2005, 07:54 PM
I was wondering about the pockets snaging on the handles could get interesting

Matt in AK

03-12-2005, 07:55 PM
I'm usually STARK RAVING NAKED http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//eek.gif

Hoffman in Warner Robins Ga

03-12-2005, 08:01 PM
Steel toed engineer boots, Levi's, short sleeved work shirt. Shop rag in back pocket is for wiping hands on. If you're getting dirty you're working too hard. I worked with a guy who got too close to a spinning shaft on a lathe, he got his nice little apron ripped off of his body. Got pretty beat up too, lucky not to be killed. Aprons are for BBQing.

03-12-2005, 08:16 PM
Well, unlike Evan and Hoffman I wear clothes. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif Usually a uniform of blue pants and white shirt. Sometimes jeans too. If I'm about to do a messy job, I throw on a set of cover-alls. I also carry a rag in the back pocket.

03-12-2005, 08:19 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by bikenut:
I worked with a guy who got too close to a spinning shaft on a lathe, he got his nice little apron ripped off of his body. </font>
Maybe I'll stop running my lathe naked. I'd hate to get my nice little... ripped off my body...

Hoffman in Warner Robins Ga

03-12-2005, 08:31 PM
If you wear aprins use a rubber band in between the string and wear you tie it to the aprin. that way the rubber band will break instead of pulling you into the machine!

03-12-2005, 08:46 PM
well,leths see, I wear pink ruffel shirt, matching leopard print bra and panties, unless I have my pantiehose on,but I dont wear those around hot chips though and short shorts, and come-fu**-me heels.

03-12-2005, 09:09 PM
Most days I'm in bib overalls with a short sleeve shirt. I've grown tired of the restriction of jeans and a belt. On cold days I will wear coveralls. Always steel toed boots.
no neat sig line

[This message has been edited by larry_g (edited 03-13-2005).]

03-12-2005, 09:16 PM
old jeans and old t-shirts. i like the rag in the back pocket idea as i'm always looking for a place to wipe my hands.

i do have a question. sometimes if i'm working on something that is really oily and making fine chips, the chips stick to my hands and i have to be careful wiping the oil off or i end up getting steel splinters. is there a trick to avoid this? it doesn't happen very often, but when it does, you know it.

andy b.

03-12-2005, 10:30 PM
Jeans and a T-shirt - or a sweat shirt that will let me pull the sleeves up above the elbows.

Yeah, I tend to wipe my hands on the jeans. Tried having a rag, paper towels, such on and so forth, but almost thirty years of this stuff - well - habits.

I have three pairs of jeans I wear in the shop, the rest are not to be worn in the shop.

03-12-2005, 11:06 PM

I found out why aprons tie in the back. But I ain't tellin. I modified my apron to tie on the front. Wrong thing to do ... Well okay.. The 4" grinder got it and nearly undressed me.


03-12-2005, 11:09 PM
i wear a blue cotton barbers jacket.not as restrictive as overalls,but keeps at least my top half clean,and an old pair of pants so i can wipe my hands without feeling guilty http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif.


03-12-2005, 11:13 PM
Carhartt bibs covered by a leather apron. After going through two commercial aprons that "weren't right", I bought a large piece of leather from a saddlemaker and took it to the local shoe repair shop. He measured me like he was going to tailor a custom suit. Done in two days. Total damage was $20 for leather + $15 for cutting, sewing straps & buckle (in back).

Dave Opincarne
03-12-2005, 11:15 PM
that and a T-shirt as well as a work apron. I have found that the apron does keep my clothes much much cleaner.

[This message has been edited by Dave Opincarne (edited 03-12-2005).]

03-13-2005, 01:50 AM
-whatever shirt I put on that morning
-whatever jeans I put on that morning
-whatever shoes I put on that morning
-whatever hat I put on that morning
-my nice clost fitting fleece jacket (holds chips really well)
-whatever bandaid I happened to need
-will be needing to wear a beard restrainer soon

03-13-2005, 01:53 AM
I wear jeans and a t-shirt mostly, with a regular cloth apron.....I wipe my hands on the chest/stomach part of the apron so often with fingers wet with cutting fluid and oil that it began coming through to my shirts.....I had my wife sew a piece of oil-cloth on the inside of the apron in that area....problem solved.


03-13-2005, 01:58 AM
During the winter I wear Dickies pants, a collared cotton shirt short sleeve with company logo, a dickies work jacket and caterpillar steel toes. during the summer I wear dickies shorts, the steel toes, and cotton shirt.

03-13-2005, 01:58 AM
I ALWAYS wear a TuTu http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif But to keep the dirt and grime down I always have a clean rag hanging well off to the side of each machine tied up with wire. When the rag gets too greasy I use it as fire starter for the wood stove.

03-13-2005, 01:58 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by hoffman:
I'm usually STARK RAVING NAKED http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//eek.gif


Remind me not to visit your shop!

03-13-2005, 02:26 AM
I ware carhart bib coveralls mainly because it is cold out I have not had the lathe long enough to figure out what to ware for summer but it will probably be cloths not fig leaves

Matt in AK

03-13-2005, 02:40 AM
I have recently taken to wearing heavy cotton "Yakka" overalls ( when welding, they don't burn nearly as well as polyester/cotton blend http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif)
Also incontinance underwear for those times that I cannot be bothered to leave the workshop or the keyboard.......oops....too late http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//frown.gif.
Gotta go now , bye


03-13-2005, 03:06 AM
Blue jeans and a tee shirt. Get them very dirty as I use them for wiping my hands, test the washing machines capability on a daily basis.


03-13-2005, 08:03 AM
Machining and car/bike work is done in black jeans and dark colored tees.......cause they're gonna end up stained anyway.Wood world is in a more "gayish" golfing attire.Pinks and pale colored Lacostes(sp)and holy blue Jeans,golf cap with pencil stuck in.You have to look decent at a moments notice for stupid meetings and such.Blow off sawdust with shopair.

Have been enjoying your cuemaking exploits.

Your Old Dog
03-13-2005, 08:03 AM
Well, my wifes shop (the house) is much nicer than my shop. We seem to get along much better when I honor her shop as much as she honors mine! For that reason I wear an denum woodworkers apron.

To keep crap off my hands I wear the kind of leather gloves that come off easy. I have them laying all over the shop so I can take them off easily and don't need to look for a pair when I need'em. Needless to say, I try real hard not to jam my fingers up into powered up machinery as there is a safety issue and no need for me to be that close anyway. I can say this though, it is possible to walk into a shop and not die while wearing gloves if you pay any attention to what your doing. Would I reccomend it to anyone else, hell no! But it's worked okay for me, still got 10 fingers and a wife who'll cook me lunch and dinner and do some other stuff Iike http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

And for you guys that wear the tutus. You know what kind of wedgy you could get if you start flaunting those spaghette straps too close to that Bridgy? You might want to rethink that. I'm told the safest clothing for machinist is to either wear lycra like the bicycle racers or stay in the house and keep the shop locked http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

[This message has been edited by Your Old Dog (edited 03-13-2005).]

03-13-2005, 08:47 AM
I wear over-alls. Depending on the temperature i wear my winter boots or running shoes. I used to have 2 pairs of shoes. One for going out, one for the shop. Now I seem to only have 3 shoes. I keep the 3rd one just in case the fourth comes back. It has been 4 months and still no sign of the 4th shoe. I am starting to give up hope

Rob http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

03-13-2005, 09:16 AM
I wear an apron. Tight fitting, tied in the back. I have a shop coat for chilly days, but it's too baggy and catches on handles all the time. Oh, and always short sleeves. We have a rule in our shop- you get hurt wearing gloves, your're fired.

03-13-2005, 09:33 AM
jeans in winter/shorts in summer
cheap denim apron from Enco at times
thin blue nitrile gloves

Steel toed sneakers, meeting some OSHA type requirement from Walmart, saved my toes a few times.

If you are going to be in a shop all day, it is a great investment to insulate and then heat/cool the shop. It improves the work product a lot.


03-13-2005, 10:05 AM
Me I wear either jeans or jogging pants with a sweat shirt.. sleeves pushed up and saftyglass or face sheild. When cutting or welding lined overalls. Roll of shop towels and tub of waterless hand cleaner kept near work stations keeps hands clean and wife happy.


03-13-2005, 10:29 AM
How did this naked machining myth get started????


03-13-2005, 10:32 AM
G-String and pasties with tasteful sandals. In the winter I wear a hat.

03-13-2005, 10:44 AM
Summer: Jeans, T-shirt, Steel toe low boots.
Winter: Jeans
T-shirt/flannel shirt/sweatshirt combo
Heavy socks under steel toes boots
Wool Hat
Burrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. 92" of snow in eastern Maine this winter (so far) !!

Eastern Maine, USA

03-13-2005, 10:48 AM
summer, t shirt and jeans, and steel toe boots. winter, same ensemble plus a pull over sweatshirt.

[This message has been edited by pete913 (edited 03-13-2005).]

03-13-2005, 11:24 AM
Bunch of no-class hacks! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

I prefer a well fitted Armani suit with 18carat gold diamond studded cufflinks(Monarch 10EE pattern http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif)
For shoes,well boots it is a machineshop after all http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//rolleyes.gifI prefer an ostrich skin western toe with silver(sterling)accents.

A fine cigar and a dry martini top off the effect.
I love the new fabrics,they don't scratch the seats in the Aston Martin http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

If anyone knows where to get a good deal on a walk-in humidore I am all ears http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

I don't really dress that way,but the way some customers bitch and complain about the prices you would think so http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//mad.gifcheap bastiches.

03-13-2005, 11:28 AM
Coveralls are my choice. I can jump out of them if I need to run into the house for something to eat. The wife dont get mad when I leave them in the garage. And to boot, the stairs to the washing machine are on the way into the house. Jup out of the c'alls and throw them down stairs. I've been called the Fonze when wearing them to the hardware store so the wife played with the back of them a bit.


And if there is anything that I dont do, its machining or frying bacon in the buff. That thing is too small as it is, dont need to give it a reason to be smaller.

03-13-2005, 12:17 PM
Weird, do you wear the Armani suit more than one day or do you just give it to charity and grab a new one out of the closet? With the gold diamond cuff links and the sterling trim on the ostrich boot I would think that they would clash. Upgrade the boots to gold trim so things match better. Please don't smoke the cigars in the Aston Martin as it will reduce the value a lot and when the ash tray is full you will have to replace it. Which one of your Astons do you like best, the gray or the red one? http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif


03-13-2005, 12:18 PM
The local uniform supply service has a little store where they sell used coveralls, shop coats, etc. So if I'm doing something dirty I'll ware the coveralls.

Your Old Dog, I'm with you on the gloves. I wear them doing things like polishing and even running my band saw or even on my belt sanders. Some are going to say NO! NO!, but their my fingers and hands, it's my shop I'll do it MY way.

Been doing "stuff" for over fifty years and still have everything I need to play my accordian, piano, and guitar, thank you. Did sprain the middle finger on my right hand, had to put a splint on it. It was fun playing Harmonica with that on.


03-13-2005, 01:43 PM
I wear a canvas apron of my own design and make, I can't see ever getting it caught in a machine, it's fitted quite well. I just wear that over whatever clothes I happen to be wearing. I also wear nitrile gloves all the time, feels like you aren't wearing gloves and keeps the oil dirt and chips off the skin.

And safety glasses.

03-13-2005, 02:29 PM
Vote number three for the blue nitrile gloves -- tough as nails, almost impossible to puncture, wear like iron and they're pretty cheap. Resist chlorinated solvents lots better than latex. My dentist orders them in for me, but they're cheaper on the web if you buy in case quantity (1,000).

Recycle worn out MIG gloves & use 'em on the wire brush wheel .... it runs 9,500 SFM and HURTS if you touch it!

03-13-2005, 02:52 PM
In the winter "long underwear" (usually Sept-May)
In the summer Shorts (June-Aug)
Only two season here.. cold and warm!!

03-13-2005, 03:00 PM
Bibs and gray pocket t. most times with lineman boots,(the kind with the hard shield on the top)as most stuff usually hits there instead of crushing the steel cup through my foot.

03-13-2005, 05:01 PM
Denim apron is good, even if it makes you look like one of Santa's elves. Get the really cheap apron from Enco or Wholesale, and the front pocket will fall off by itself - that way it won't catch chips, and you won't get squirrels storing acorns in there. I don't bother with steel-toed shoes as I trained myself years ago to NOT try to catch falling stuff with my foot - successfully, so far. Besides, my steel-toed boots are full of acorns. I take off the wristwatch, and I even take off my Secret Decoder Ring when I'm in the shop. I top off the ensemble with a hat, complete with tin-foil lining - properly grounded, of course, as per code - to keep out evil thoughts. And safety glasses are good.

I lied a little about the hat. But not about the acorns.

Paul Alciatore
03-13-2005, 06:04 PM
I wear my regular work clothes, inexpensive slacks and a medium price, button shirt.

When I got the SB lathe and noticed the tendency to throw oil all over me and the walls, I bought some disposable lab coats. They are white Tyvec and have snaps down the front. I cut the sleves to about 1/2 length as I wouldn't want to have one get tangled around a workpiece or tool and have me drawn into the machine. They seen to work well and after they get dirty, I just toss them. I don't do machinning full time so five have lasted almost a year.

Paul A.

03-13-2005, 06:43 PM
Jeans, t-shirt, socks and safety glasses are on a box just inside the door. I leave my good clothes outside the door and put on my shop clothes, change my glasses and slip into a pair of shop boots I cut down from safety toed rubber boots.

The shop is in the basement so I have to be pretty meticulous about keeping the two worlds separated.

Washing shop clothes in the family washing machine is another issue! A whole nother set of procedures.

03-13-2005, 09:17 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by WJHartson:
Weird, do you wear the Armani suit more than one day

You mean you have worn a suit for a WHOLE day http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//rolleyes.gif

Actually it's jeans and a cottn uniform shirt for me.Which reminds me that I have to b---- out the uniform man tommorow http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

[This message has been edited by wierdscience (edited 03-13-2005).]

03-14-2005, 12:08 AM
I wear only red ked runners.

J Tiers
03-14-2005, 01:38 AM
Usually some "dead" shoes, jeans, and a flannel shirt, (with the usual under that). The shoes don't leave the shop, that cuts the swarf travel.

I have an apron, but I think its dangerous, the ties come loose and then its floppy, just when it isn't convenient to re-tie it.

03-14-2005, 04:15 PM
My best suit before going out to some critically important dinner ,this insures that after i have left oil stains and chips on the carpet, and black finger marks on the bathroom light switch,taps sink and toilet seat i never get invited back,
word spreads am never invited anywhere else,and thus get more time in the shop.

Alistair Hosie
03-14-2005, 05:46 PM
Hey Evan what is it they say???
IFYOUGOTITFLAUNTITBABY http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gifAlistair

Duct Taper
03-15-2005, 12:11 AM
Blue jeans & T Shirt (blue) in summer
Blue jeans & sweatshirt (blue) in winter
Throw-away Tyvec apron (blue)
Safety glasses (blue)
Nitrile gloves (blue)
Paper shop towels (blue) laying everywhere
Use Dykem (blue)for marking
Do most of my work when the sun is shining and the sky is blue, not much night work.
I'm happy except when it rains, then I'm blue.

03-15-2005, 07:00 AM
I wore shop aprons for over 20 years as it looked bad to wear dirty clothes when customers walked through. The apron would be rolled up and rubber banded when a situation dictated. Shop coats are good except in the summer. I always wear long sleeved shirts as I cry too easily when hot chips are flying. I don't like gloves as there's too often I have to have a feel for some procedure and I would take them off. I have developed a tendency to blot my hands rather than wipe as a chip will make itself known without being imbeded further. Doesn't always work but that's what keeps the optivisor employed.

03-15-2005, 10:23 AM
Well, now I am adding to my shop attire. One bloodied golf shirt.

[This message has been edited by cuemaker (edited 03-15-2005).]

03-27-2005, 09:36 PM
i just wanted to post a follow-up to this thread. in it a few folks mentioned the nitrile gloves and some links. one of the links had them for $36 per 1000, with free shipping if you ordered at least two cases. what the heck, i figured, they have to be at least as good as latex gloves.

well these things are GREAT!!!!! they arrived thursday and i got to use a few pairs over the weekend. those crappy latex gloves rip apart if you just look at them, and forget it if you get any oil of parts cleaner on them. the nitrile ones are just about indestructible. i was doing engine work, woodworking, and pulling some old greasy junk apart and they never tore or started turning into a gooey mess.

my wife was very pleased that my hands aren't all black and smelly after some of the grime i was into. if any of you were thinking of trying the nitrile gloves, i say go for it. well worth the 7.2 cents a pair.

andy b.

03-27-2005, 09:56 PM

Maybe I will give them a try

J Tiers
03-27-2005, 10:12 PM
Sounds like the ticket for scraping, aside from wiping the surface before spotting. For some reason, a bare hand seems to be the best for that.

But there may be some way around that. I hate going to work with blue in the crevices around fingernails etc. Pre-oiling only goes so far.

03-27-2005, 11:32 PM

Glad you like the nitrile gloves. I had a pair on yesterday while changing the blade on my horizontal wet-cut bandsaw (nasty job, lots of oil, chips, sharp teeth). The nitriles came through without a puncture.

BTW, you can reverse them after they get really dirty (L to R, R to L) and just about get double life.

Barry Milton