Shop Interlocking Floor Mat Suggestions?
I'm looking for some interlocking floor tiles that can be placed on concrete slab to absorb some shock and make more comfortable when standing at the lathe, bench, etc. See some are foam, some are rubber, etc., and trying to figure out which will hold up and work. Machines won’t be placed on them and appreciate any suggestions or thoughts.

Maybe 20 years ago, I bought a pack of four of the gray foam matts at Sears.  When Harbor Freight opened, I bought two more.  I cannot tell the difference between the two.  Yes, they make shop time more comfortable, but now, I do not have a heart attack when I drop a tool!!!!!!!!!!!
"I tried being reasonable..........I didn't like it." Clint Eastwood
I also have quite a few from HF. I've probably had them for 12+ years and while a few if the interlocking fingers have broke off, they are otherwise good to go. They area a pain f you tend to move tools (casters) around, but they are comfortable and then there's that tool thing that Bill mentioned. In my case my shop is slab on ground, and in the winter they aren't quite as cold on the feet. But if water gets under them, they slide like the floor is ice. It's also harder to sweep up if you do much of that. But there are still a nice addition.
I started with absolutely nothing. Now, thanks to years of hard work, careful planning, and perseverance, I find I still have most of it left.
My entire shop is done in Harbor freight floor mats that I bought years ago. They work fine every now and again you can catch them on sale.
Formerly known as John's Woodshop
John, if you have a small area where you stand a lot,  a chef or kitchen mat is a good option,  not cheap,  but more cushion than the interlocking pads. I went with a cheap, but thick, oriental rug in front of my bench, feels better to me that the HF mats, though harder to clean, and more expensive.
I used interlocking floor mats for a while (I still do in parts) and I found that they are not very durable. They will rip or damage somewhat easily, they will deform (shrink or grow) based on solvents and finishes, and get discolored easily. They're useful, just not strong. I think rubber garage mats would be much better, as my neighbors had done for gym mats. But of course that's much more expensive. I bought the interlocking foam pads for a song at Costco, so it's not like I'm out much.
I too have the Harbor Freight interlocking mats on concrete in front of each stationary tool in my home machine shop. Very comfortable and can recommend them.

Have laminate flooring on foam padding in the woodworking shop. Really like it and has saved more than one tool from serious damage.

Doug, how has the laminate held up under the stationary tools?
I started with absolutely nothing. Now, thanks to years of hard work, careful planning, and perseverance, I find I still have most of it left.
I had some scrap (roughly 4' squares) of carpet available from a recarpeting at about the same time that I needed to sand/finish a large item, so I put a piece on the garage floor. It has stayed there for almost 7 years and has been surprisingly comfortable and useful. It sits right next to the table saw. Yes, it captures sawdust easily, but I just hit it with the shop vac when it gets bad.

If you go this way, a dense/thick carpet would work best. And probably not shag. Think of this as a poor man's oriental rug, similar to what barryvabeach suggested.

(09-26-2023, 05:14 AM)fredhargis Wrote: Doug, how has the laminate held up under the stationary tools?

Fred, it has held up remarkably well. In fact after several years now I can't think of a single downside to having installed it in the woodworking shop. All my stationary tools are on casters or mobile bases and I move them around as necessary. This has proven to be very convenient and they move smoothly over the laminate flooring.

I was motivated to do this after Cian Perez posted pictures here of the laminate flooring he installed in his basement shop. I liked the way it looked and chatted with him as to how he liked it. Not long after, Home Depot had a closeout sale on one of their lines of laminate flooring and I bought enough to do the entire shop. Would do it again in a heartbeat.


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