30 Free Metal Shop Project Ideas

Caddy Tray Metal Project

The following is a collection of metal shop project ideas to help inspire hobby metalworkers to get back in the shop and start creating.

Bench Metal and Wrought Metal Project Ideas

These projects are made primarily with Bench/Wrought Metal:

1. Camp Saw

This lightweight yet sturdy camp saw is simple to make.

The aluminum tubing is strong but easy to bend.

You should be able to find saw blades which fit this size, but the length of the bow can be altered for other size blades.

Metal Camp Saw Project Plans

2. Fireplace Tool Set

This fireplace set is made of aluminum.

The handles are wrapped with heavy cord or plastic material.

The shovel and broom sections can be assembled with rivets or machine screws.

A metric equivalent chart is added to use metric measuring tools.

Fireplace Set Metal Shop Plans

3. Pickup Tongs

These tongs are a useful tool for the workshop.

They are handy for holding hot metal parts and containers.

The sizes and shapes of the jaws can be altered to meet special needs.

Pickup Tongs Metal Shop Project

4. Stackable Tables

These tables combine metal with either wood or plastic.

The dimensions are given in both inches and millimeters.

Stackable Tables Metal Shop Plan

5. Caddy Tray

This tray can be used as a desk accessory or anywhere to hold small items.

The wire parts can be assembled by brazing.

All dimensions are given in millimeters.

Caddy Tray Metal Project

6. Fishing Net

This fishing net is made from aluminum.

It would make a great gift for a fisherman or possibly a mass produced item to sell.

Measurements are in inches.

Fishing Net Metal Shop Plans

Sheet Metal Projects Ideas

These projects are made primarily with sheet metal:

7. Decorative Planter Box

Many sizes and shapes of planter boxes can be made with sheet metal.

This front of the planter can be decorated with scraps from stampings or with perforated or expanded metal.

Planter box metal plans

8. Bird Feeder

This useful feeder can be made in many shapes and sizes. Here is a suggested form.

One way to experiment with further ideas is to fold sheets of paper into interesting shapes.

bird feeder metal plans

9. Paper/Pad Holder

This simple metal container is a handy item for holding sheets of note paper on a desk.

It can be made in a variety of sizes to match standard paper sizes.

Finish it in the color of your choosing.

Paper Pad holder metal project

10. Colonial Hanging Lamp

This beautiful lamp can be made from a few simple materials.

Assemble the perforated sheet with pop rivets.

Change the bulb by removing the two #8 by 1 1/4 inch flat head wood screws shown at the top of the assembly.

colonial lamp metal plans

11. Spice Rack

A handy kitchen accessory to hold all the small cans and jars of spices.

Several of these can be mounted on the inside of a kitchen/cabinet door.

All dimensions are in millimeters.

spice rack metal plans

12. Charcoal Hod

This is a very useful item for a patio or around a fireplace.

It is great for holding charcoal.

charcoal hod metal plans

13. Mailbox

This useful mailbox will give you practice in laying out, cutting, forming, and assembling sheet metal.

The project can be finished with colored enamel.

mailbox metal plans

14. Small Waste Basket

A practical waste basket container that you can finish by painting.

small waste basket metal plans

Art Metal and Jewelry Project Ideas

These are smaller/more artistic projects:

15. Small Candy Dish

Here is a simple yet elegant metal candy dish.

The wooden form is shown in the drawing, but other forms can be made for other shapes.

small candy dish metal shop plans

16. Decorative Metal Box

This decorative copper box has a chased design on the cover.

The inside of the box can be covered with flocking.

The bottom can be finished by gluing a piece of walnut to it.

The box can be used for storing jewelry or other small items.

small metal box shop plans

17, 18, 19, & 20. Bracelet, Armband, Letter Opener, and Scriber

Three of these give practice in art metal.

The other gives practice in bench metal or beginning machine shop.

They include many steps in metalwork.

bracelet, letter opener, arm band, scriber metal shop plans

Machine Shop, Foundry, Forging and Heat Treating Project Ideas

These are projects which will require more advanced processing such as forging and heat treating:

21 & 22. Tack Hammer and Plumb Bob

This brass tack hammer and plumb bob are two examples of the miniature tools that can be made in machine shop and used for hobby work or as souvenirs.

The hammer handle can be knurled to provide a better grip.

Any tool can be made to a smaller or larger scale.

A metric equivalent chart is given for reference.

tack hammer plumb bob metal shop plans

23. Bookends

Here are two interesting machine-shop projects.

One bookend is made from shallow aluminum channel, backed with contrasting walnut.

The decorations are made with a circle cutter or fly cutter.

The other piece is made of mild steel.

A shaper was used to create the striking cross-textured effect.

Both pieces measure 3 by 3 1/2 inches (76 by 89 mm).

They are screwed in place.

Try your own ideas for decorative bookends.

bookends metal shop project

24. Hobby Knife

A good machine shop and heat-treating project.

The blades must be shaped, heat-treated, and ground.

hobby knife metal shop project

25. Paperweight

This project will give you experience in casting (foundry) and machine shop.

paper weight metal shop project

26 & 27. Tack Hammer and C-Clamp

Here are two small machine shop projects. The heads of the tack hammer can made of cast aluminum.

Tack hammer and c-clamp metal shop plans

28, 29, & 30. Cold Chisel, Punches, and Screwdriver

These tools will be a good addition to your tool box.

Producing them will give you experience in forging and heat treating.

cold chisel, punches, and screwdriver metal shop projects

Other Ideas

From Videos

None of these ideas are piquing your interest?

Here are some videos of metal project ideas which could also inspire your creativity.

100 DIY Project Ideas From Metal:

80 Metal Furniture Ideas:


Make Your Own Ideas

Still nothing?

Come up with your own metal shop project idea by looking around your life for problems which need to be solved or tasks which need to be done.

Is there a metal object which could assist you?

Start planning and designing, maybe you’ll come up with a new invention!

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