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Purchasing 1 Workshop unlocks the Workshop tab where I can buy various upgrades such as:

  • Mineral Hoes: Your farmers are 50% more effective
  • Iron Hoes: Your farmers are 30% more effective

The subtext for the Workshop says "Improves craft effectiveness by 6%"

Does this mean that my Mineral Hoes now makes farmers 53% more effective for each Workshop? OR does it work differently?

Additionally does the first Workshop give this bonus, making Mineral Hoes effectively 53% from the first Workshop?

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Craft effectiveness does not affect the upgrades in the Workshop menu, no. If you look further down on that tab, you should see a number of resources that you can craft out of other resources. Also, as a convenience, any crafted resource you have made previously will be listed on the left panel, under your main resources, with buttons for easy crafting. Each time you craft one of these resources, you will by default produce one unit of that resource. The workshop's craft effectiveness boost is to that amount produced.

So, with only one Workshop, spending 175 units of Wood will create 1.06 units of Beam. With five workshops, it will produce 1.3 units of Beam.

This boost is incredibly useful, especially as the game progresses, and you start crafting new resources out of other crafted resources. As well, it is one of the few things in the game that has no diminishing returns; a hundred Workshops means producing seven units of everything you craft.

One caveat: While crafting Wood out of Catnip does appear in the list on the left, Catnip Refinement is not affected by the Workshop craft effectiveness boost.

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    Great answer. I haven't unlocked the ability to craft beams or other such craftables so it really confused me! – user66184 Sep 20 '14 at 0:56
  • @Thebluefish They should show up once you have a decent fraction of the resources needed to craft them. AFAIK, it's a similar idea to what I said in this answer about buildings. Also, if you're okay with some spoilers about future tech/items, there's a list of what the workshop does on this wiki page. – Billy Mailman Sep 20 '14 at 1:00
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Those are upgrades, which are separate from crafting. Multiple Workshops have no effect on upgrade effectiveness. So Mineral Hoes, for example, always makes farmers exactly 50% more effective.

Crafting is the bottom workshop interface, which lets you convert materials into other materials. Each workshop, including the first, increases the amount of output material you get for a fixed amount of input material by 6% of the base amount.

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    Wood is different, and is specifically not affected by the workshop bonus. This is probably because the ability to make wood does not come from workshops. The bonus applies to every other material you can craft. – murgatroid99 Sep 24 '14 at 21:26

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