New State, New Shop #5: The Wall Goes Up!

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Blog entry by DrPuk2U posted 04-30-2012 04:17 PM 2351 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: Rippin' and Grippin' Part 5 of New State, New Shop series Part 6: Bench Assemblies and Flattening the Top »

So, for a number of reasons, I decided to split our 4-car garage into two halves by putting a wall down the center. This has a number of advantages:

  • Sound insulation from the rest of the house
  • I can keep the shop air-conditioned without try to cool the whole garage
  • Gives me more space to hang stuff, including lumber
  • More electrical in the wall to make the shop more flexible

The downside, aside from the cost (which wasn’t bad) was that it makes the remaining side a bit darker as the two windows are in the shop, but there are still windows in the garage door and the door in the back.

Here’s a shot of the garage as a whole before the wall. You can see the pile of wood for the Holtzapffel workbench on the left and the materials that will be the wall in the foreground.

The floor has radiant heat so it was not possible to anchor the wall to the floor in the normal way. All we could do was glue it to the floor and drive big anchor bolts into the walls and ceiling.

Here’s the framing of the wall going up. Nothing special except notice that three of the studs are triple 2×4s (glued and nailed together) for extra strength so I could hang the lumber rack on it.

Another shot of the framing, showing the electrical in place, including two 110v circuits (two outlets per quad box) as well as a dedicated 30 amp 100v circuit for the saw or planer and a 220v circuit for the jointer. Everything in the shop has to be mobile (since I will still park my car inside in the winter at least) and having flexibility of how to position stuff is key.

The finished wall and fire door.

The Lee Valley lumber rack. Starts around 4 feet off the floor so I can store sheet goods below it. Currently runs to almost 9 feet off the floor. I am going to add 2 more feet so it runs almost to the roof. Rack is lag-bolted with 3/8”x3” bolts to the studs. The rack isn’t going anywhere.

And voila, the finished wall with the preliminary layout of the machines. Another cart is in the offing which will hold a bunch of drawers (Ikea special from 30 years ago) and have the drill press on it. That will live just behind the shop-vac you see. You can also see the Jet air-cleaner hanging from the ceiling. Not sure how effective it will be but better than nothing. Also note the AC hanging up on the back wall. You’ll see a pile of clamps on the outfeed table – a wall-mounted clamp rack is this week’s lunchtime task if I can fit in.

Two more shots of the back wall and the side wall. You can see the two windows. Where my 40-year-old Workmate is sitting is where the Holtzapffel will go. The ever-useful workmate will get a place of honor hanging somewhere – except when it’s in use. What an investment that workmate was lo these many years! What I call the “machine” bench is on the right. My big machinist’s vice that goes on it is MIA since I got to Illinois. May have to go buy a new one.

And that’s as far as I have gotten so far. Of course, I cleared out the “other side” so my wife can put her car back inside while mine still sits outside. Next step is to start jointing and planing the billets for the top of the bench. And of course there’s lots of little stuff (clamp rack, dust separator, reinforcing the extension table legs on the table-saw and on and on….)

-- Ric, Northern Illinois, "Design thrice, measure twice, cut once... slap forehead, start over"

7 comments so far

View dbhost's profile


5726 posts in 3260 days

#1 posted 04-30-2012 05:43 PM

If you shop is half of a four car garage, your two car half must be twice the size of my two car whole garage… You can actually see floor!

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View Bertha's profile


13529 posts in 2722 days

#2 posted 04-30-2012 05:56 PM

Wow! What a great space! I don’t know how you got such tall ceilings in a garage. That’s really going to be a wonderful space to work in. Congrats!!!

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View DrPuk2U's profile


56 posts in 2321 days

#3 posted 04-30-2012 06:14 PM

Ah, you can see the floor in those photos. All that workbench wood that was in “my wife’s garage” is now in mine – taking part of the floor. The space is 19 feet wide and 22 feet long. I tried to convince my wife we could both park on her side so I could have the machines stationary. But after watching how she parts, I reconsidered… :-)

But, yes, it is a great space. Not sure why the builder built a garage with 11 foot ceilings, but I am happy with it!

-- Ric, Northern Illinois, "Design thrice, measure twice, cut once... slap forehead, start over"

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


15369 posts in 2647 days

#4 posted 04-30-2012 09:50 PM

Ric, you simply must post that Workmate in the “Workamate of your dreams” thread here on LJs. Love it!

And the space you’ve created is great. Especially coveting your wall A/C unit; it’s high on my list as summer approaches as I too built a partition wall last year to separate my woodworking area from the ‘general population.’ Congrats, and great post!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View redryder's profile


2393 posts in 3130 days

#5 posted 05-03-2012 07:26 AM

Heated floor….....that’s gotta be nice.

-- mike...............

View NedB's profile


659 posts in 3594 days

#6 posted 07-13-2012 04:27 PM

Catching up on this blog series… one question… did you leave a door in the wall, or do you get in your shop only via the garage door? Thinking that you’ll lose a lot of heat if you always have to enter via the big door.

-- Ned - 2B1ASK1

View DrPuk2U's profile


56 posts in 2321 days

#7 posted 07-13-2012 06:22 PM

There is definitely a door. You can see it in the fourth photo above. 36” steel fire door. And the whole shop is insulated – which in Illinois in the summer is absolutely necessary. I do, occasionally open the garage door, but only rarely.

-- Ric, Northern Illinois, "Design thrice, measure twice, cut once... slap forehead, start over"

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