Setting up dedicated woodworking shop #2: Brightening things up.

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Blog entry by Scott Wigginton posted 03-03-2009 06:53 AM 2586 reads 1 time favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Fighting for every square inch Part 2 of Setting up dedicated woodworking shop series Part 3: Tool Gloats and Pickett's Charge »

Priming OSB

It took two thick coats of drywall primer on my OSB just to get it ready for paint, but it is a drastic improvement over my last attempt of going straight to the latex.

Breaking Child Labor Laws

I’m quick to put my offspring hard to work, I just hope it still works when they’re old enough to mow the lawn

If only I had the clipboard and hardhad I’d qualify for a DOT lead supervisor.

Snow Day

Today we had a bit of snow/slush/ice and after not getting 5 miles into a 45 mile commute in half an hour I called my boss and took advantage of “liberal leave.” I snuck some shop time in during nap time and got some light work in.

Originally, the shop was lit by a single 60W bulb. After a recent trip to Lowe’s I came home with six 4’ dual T12 fixtures and a box of 24 bulbs for $50. I know a lot of folk rave about T8s, but the same setup would’ve run $150 so I took the gamble.


There is a 30 Amp fuse box with one fuse feeding the lights and the other going to outlets. I am installing an additional 40 Amp subpanel to feed my hungry 240V tools which also protects me in case I pop that breaker back at the main panel I won’t be plunged into darkness (another good option I’ve used with good results in my house is the Power Failure Light/Outlet )

Here is the proof I actually got the work done.

Working on a 2’ step ladder around a door opener, a lot of floor debris and a huge locker doesn’t make for ideal install conditions. If the uneven install bugs me enough I might go back and properly space them, but so long as it work I think I can live with that over my old bare bulb.

Here’s hoping they all work!

Additional Lighting

I have two cheap drafting lights I can install as needed (one in my finishing area, haven’t determined second yet).

My next dilemma is how to light underneath my loft. Right now my plan is to put a lumber rack on that backwall and hopefully eventually build something like the Ultimate Tool Stand . Until I build that tho it’ll just be my Miter saw on portable legs and some simple stand for my Rigid spindle sander. I’ve thought about building some shop built fluorescent reflectors as Jim O’Dell showed but that’d just be another non-critical project at the end of a long list.

Here’s a pic of the space, I’m open to suggestions.

Next Up

I still need to connect the 8/3 to the main panel and subpanel, run my 240V wiring, and insulate the open studs/rafters. Also creeping up my list is fench cleat system and the modular clamp rack and tool holders that’ll ride on it. Waiting for more funds is my lumber rack (probably the Grizzly's) and some PVC ductwork/cyclone.

Most likely I’ll just move some of my tools around to see where I like them best.

-- Scott

9 comments so far

View Sawdust2's profile


1467 posts in 3505 days

#1 posted 03-03-2009 01:22 PM

Paint smocks are cool.
Surprised the older daughter did not use the younger daughter as a target.


-- No piece is cut too short. It was meant for a smaller project.

View Cantputjamontoast's profile


416 posts in 2850 days

#2 posted 03-03-2009 02:01 PM

I ‘ve never seen a more beautiful crew in the world.

Do they belong to Pretty smiles Local 102?

Too bad Target does not sell house paint they might give you a couple a grand for the photo. Could add it to their college fund.

-- "Not skilled enough to wipe jam on toast!"

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 3239 days

#3 posted 03-03-2009 02:14 PM

This is looking pretty good, Scott and it great to see you getting the girls involved too.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2505 posts in 2855 days

#4 posted 03-03-2009 06:11 PM

for the lighting under your loft. At home depot they sell the 2’x4’ recessed florescent lights that mount into hung ceilings for about $35-$45 depending on the model. They hold 4, 4ft bulbs and come with a diffusser reflector plastic sheet. You’ve seen them I’m sure. My shop is fitted with these and they throw ton’s of light. They can be mounted between joists or flush and still look good. You can run them with 2 lights if that’s enough also. Some of mine have 4 lights; some have 2 depending on the relationship with windows or the type of tool in that area.

You’re a gettin there! After you get the walls/ceiling finished and sort of clear the place out it looks bigger and like it has promise. I also opted for light paint. the room looks larger and it doesn’t show the dust nearly as much.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View Scott Wigginton's profile

Scott Wigginton

51 posts in 3163 days

#5 posted 03-04-2009 12:07 AM

She’s too smart to directly paint on her sister, instead she is more subtle…

As for signing the work, that wall is for lumber storage so I’ll have them sign area near where their workbench will be.

I’ll checkout the 2’ x 4’ fixture, 4 bulbs should be more than enough light for that area.

-- Scott

View cabinetmaster's profile


10874 posts in 2975 days

#6 posted 03-04-2009 12:19 AM

Nice work. Glad to see the young ones helping. I have two grandkids about the same age that would just love to do that….......LOL

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3191 days

#7 posted 03-04-2009 01:34 AM

If you left the drop cloth up you could have gotten the floor painted at the same time. Love the pictures! Thanks for posting.

god Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View 8iowa's profile


1540 posts in 3179 days

#8 posted 03-04-2009 02:18 AM

Two helpers!.............lucky guy, I had to paint my workshop walls and ceiling myself. I also found that painting OSB is not easy.

In my “Workshop in the Woods”, I installed T-8 type fluorescent fixtures with “daylight” bulbs in order to maximize the color rendering index (CRI). These lighting fixtures have electronic balasts that operate at 21,000 HZ, thus there is no hum or flicker. It’s my opinion that lighting with electronic rather than magnetic ballasts should be chosen, even if there is a cost difference.

-- "Heaven is North of the Bridge"

View BTKS's profile


1984 posts in 2882 days

#9 posted 03-04-2009 05:35 PM

Great helpers, they are just older than my two helpers. Momma seems to get more help out of them in the garden than I do in the shop.
The white paint will be a big help. Looks like you have a good plan in place. Good luck getting everything underway.

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

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