It’s all because of a lovely lady that the floor became a reality in our workshop. Yes, she raised me and gave me my motto in life.. “Doing things for free, doesn’t mean doing them for nothing. Appreciating all work that was done, she decided, while spending a 3 months holiday in Portugal, that she could only leave after being sure that her son would finally had a finished workshop in which he could work on a brighter future.
We started with the concrete beam beneath the front doors. Because the workshop is a bit underneath street level, it had to keep the majority of water out. Yes, it works! It took a lot of concrete, but than, that by far is the cheapest building material in the country.
Way back, we decided that we wouldn’t have a concrete floor in the workshop. Extremely long periods of heavy rainfall made us realize that in the worst circumstances the water should be able to sink in the ground.
This also means that we have to put as many things as we can on wheels or legs. Now, maybe it will never happen, but when water would flow in the workshop it won’t do any damage.
So we got 4 pallets of bricks and 2 pickup trucks full of sand and made ourselves a (more or less) leveled floor….
Now we did get more bricks donated than we needed for the workshop. The thought on that was being able to get to the door without going thru the mud. Just in two days we finished all the pavement in the back garden, making it also accessible and useful for a wheel barrel etc. The garden itself will be a project on it’s own (in the future), but still we enjoy the olives every year that our three trees provide us with.
Re-using old materials and giving secondhand objects a new life is all about being flexible and anticipating early in the project on the possibilities that lay ahead. Our old miter saw back fence was broken (by some hard dry walnut piece that got stuck because it broke) and needed replacement. It was the reason for making a miter saw station and incorporate that missing fence in to it.
I found some old doors from a hotel kitchen, an old audio cabinet and, when coming for a holiday, some family members brought two pieces of 70×70x7mm. aluminium. These were the ingredients, together with the 15 year old miter saw that runs on selfmade brushes, to make a usable tool. The cheapest way to make the base was brickwork. These big brick (50×20x10 cm.) come at just 35 cents a piece and they make a strong and waterrisistend base. Nice thing next to that is the way we could reinforce the wall behind it by poring in some concrete.
It took some effort to get everything lined up and calibrated into 90 and 180 degrees all the way, but in the end it works! Now, nothing is finished at this point.
There’s a lot of things to be recycled and to be made to size of the workshop. Sometime somebody gave me a tip about an old hotel that was renovating and was having a lot of old furniture left over. I did what I alway do and took the opportunity to get free cabinets and workbenches. I repaired some of the cabinets and sold them, leaving me with all the storage space, tables and wood that I need, for free!
Next time: interior design and workshop layout….
-- Não só Serradura, Tomar, Portugal http://www.notjustsawdust.com