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Workshop #2: Yet Another possibility here

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Blog entry by Tomcat1066 posted 02-05-2008 07:39 PM 925 reads 0 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: A New Beginning Part 2 of Workshop series Part 3: Things that make you go Hmmmmm »

I’ve done a bit more thinking about my workshop situation, and figured I needed to list my all spaces that can be used for woodworking, and how much they can be used.

1. Storage room – at 6’x6’, it’s smaller than any other workshop I’ve encountered. However, it can be dedicated to woodworking full time if necessary. If another shop situation reveals itself, it can get some use as lumber storage, so it’ll work either way.

2. Screened-in back porch – This space can be used for woodworking, but not dedicated to woodworking. My wife wants a sitting area outside. This does lend itself to the possibility of small tables that serve as end tables while sitting, but serve a woodworking purpose otherwise. However, due to the lay out, there’s not really space to dedicate completely to a shop function.

3. Patio – It’s about 8’ wide and 16’ long (guestimating), so it will fit a variety of functions sizewise. However, there’s no cover so foul weather could be a significant problem.

4. Back yard – lots of space, all in all, but no shelter or anything else to make it a good shop space by itself.

Now, this is what I have to work with. While my wife would prefer to have the freezer in the storage room, it’s not a huge issue with her if it’s not apparently. With my assets on the table, here are some of the options I have in mind.

A. Stick with the storage room – The argument can be made that I’m simply overthinking this and the storage room will work fine. Besides, a Chippendale highboy made it a 6’x6’ shop is even more impressive than one made in a 20’x20’ shop.

B. Outdoor Shop – Set up some kind of awning or canopy and build away. Sure, cold weather will make it difficult to work, and raid could be a problem, even if there are sides, but it’s certainly doable. The downside is that an awning or canopy must be bought or built, and I hate construction-esque jobs.

C. Build a decent sized shed – Honestly, if money permits, this is where I’d prefer to go. However, money has to allow for materials and labor. As I’ve said before, I hate construction-type work…even if it’s mine!

D. The “Hybrid” approach – Basically, this is a combination of more than one of the above options. For example, using the storage room, but having the capability to move outdoors for larger projects. Or, build a shop and use the storage room for sharpening or tool restoration.

There’s still a lot to think about, and unless some money shows up sooner than I think it will, I may not be able to build a shop period, which just leaves A, B, and D as options.

Right now, I’m seriously looking at Option D as the most viable. Basically, build two workbenches. One for outside work, and another for inside the shop. The outside workbench could double as a BBQ table (so my wife would be happy ;), but could still serve it’s original purpose of serving as a workbench. This would be primarily for larger projects.

Within the screened in porch, a couple of small tables can double as part of an assembly table when not being used as end tables for my wife’s sitting area. The floor of the porch could serve partial duty as an assembly area during potentially rainy weather.

What I like about this option is the versatility of it. I can do work any time, and any where. I should be able to handle almost any sized project, and the only hurdle would be where to store things after they’re done, but I can deal with that one when I get to it.

Who knows though…I might hit the lottery and have my dream workshop before it’s all said and done ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!



11 comments so far

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 3562 days


#1 posted 02-05-2008 07:53 PM

I feel for you Brother LJ.

In the beginning I had a least a one car garage that was crammed full of tools. I had to pull them out onto the concrete driveway to use them.

Then I graduated to a two car garage with a similar situation.

I finally had enough and built the shop but I had to for my business.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 3259 days


#2 posted 02-05-2008 07:55 PM

Oh yeah, what I would give for a one car garage! ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 3624 days


#3 posted 02-05-2008 08:03 PM

I think you have a great plan there!
I especially like the “anything built in a 6×6 is more impressive than in a 20×20”—so always include the size of your workspace when posting a project!!!
AND… get the materials for a dedicated shed and arrange a “barn raising” event where all your LumberJocks friends pop by for a day and they build it for you!! Oh what fun that would be..

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 3259 days


#4 posted 02-05-2008 08:05 PM

I’d love to have a “barn raising” Debbie. Unfortunately, I haven’t found any LumberJocks in my neck of the wood just yet :(

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 3624 days


#5 posted 02-05-2008 08:25 PM

Sounds like a great opportunity for a few LumberJocks to plan a vacation :)
(A little far for me and I wouldn’t be much help, anyway… or I’d be there with bells on)

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 3259 days


#6 posted 02-05-2008 08:26 PM

Thanks Debbie. It’s the thought that counts, right? ;)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 3562 days


#7 posted 02-05-2008 08:44 PM

Have you looked into any of the prefab buildings. There are places in Montana and Ohio (because I work both areas) that offer out buildings pre-built and dropped on site.

Most of these are incredibly competitive. I have looked at the prices and sometimes I can barely buy the materials for what they cost without the delivery fee.

They are usually able to do this because it is a lumber yard that has it as an extension of their business. They have the deepest discount on their material and they are paying guys about $8 an hour to build them.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 3259 days


#8 posted 02-05-2008 09:26 PM

Todd,

I can’t say that I have looked into that option. Mostly, I figured they would be significantly more expensive than just the materials. None of the local lumber sources seem to have similar setups…only Home Depot has anything of the sort displayed, though Lowe’s should be able to get them. Their cost is pretty high, so I know that’s not what you’re talking about in the least.

There are a couple of places set up on the side of the road with buildings of various sorts. I might have to look into those, just to price and see what they’re running.

Thanks for letting me know about that!

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View shawnseanderson's profile

shawnseanderson

25 posts in 3227 days


#9 posted 02-08-2008 01:23 AM

I can feel your pain. It was never that bad for me but I started in a 10’X12’ outdoor shed with no power. Lighting was a problem but you will find a way. My Unity Candle table was built in that shed.

-- Shawn, Washington, No really, its a work in progress.

View DustyNewt's profile

DustyNewt

671 posts in 3325 days


#10 posted 02-08-2008 01:49 AM

If you have the yard space and codes allow, there is also the option of a used tractor trailer or even a gutted singlewide. They can often be had for $500-1000. Then you just pretty them up as time and money allow.

-- Peace in Wood ~ http://dustynewt.com/

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 3259 days


#11 posted 02-08-2008 03:03 AM

Shawn,

That’s a nice looking table you built in that shed. Congrats ;)

Dusty,

Unfortunately, there’s a decent sized back yard, but not that big. Not only that, but I suspect the neighbors would have a cow considering the neighborhood is typical suburb (even though it’s inside the city limits).

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

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