The Great Garage Reorganization and Shop Improvement Act #6: Time for more power!

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by captkerk posted 05-29-2010 02:57 AM 3887 reads 1 time favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 5: A shed? Part 6 of The Great Garage Reorganization and Shop Improvement Act series Part 7: Drinks anyone? »

I’m finally getting around to posting pics of the updated electrical work I did a few months ago. This was done before I built the shed, but I didn’t take pics right away. I added only two more circuits, but a bunch more outlets. Originally I was thinking I would add a lot more circuits, but I got a little more realistic about how much I would actually need since I would be the only one working in there at a time and it seemed that two additional circuits would be sufficient.

Before I added anything, there was a lighting circuit, a separate circuit for the two 120V 15 amp outlets on the ceiling for the garage door openers, two outlets on a 120V 15 amp circuit that is also feeds the two exterior outlets (front porch and back patio), and a dedicated 240V 20 amp circuit with only one receptacle. I wanted to add enough new receptacles to render the shared exterior circuit unnecessary in the garage since during Christmas time I have enough lights on that circuit that I can’t run any power tools on it too.

Here’s what I did.

main feed

This is the new line I ran from the electrical panel (which is behind the lumber rack). I added two new 20 amp 120V circuits and wired it like a kitchen with two appliance circuits that share a common neutral. This way I only had to run four wires: a red hot, black hot, white neutral and a ground. Since I was using metal conduit I had read that I really didn’t need to run the ground but could use the conduit as a ground, however, I decided to run it anyway.

The large junction box with four conduit runs out of it feeds the four different areas I put new receptacles. One is between the garage doors where the bandsaw sits. The 240V outlet on that wall brings power from the receptacle that was in the garage to begin with.

bandsaw feed

The next spot is the wall where my drill press and tool box sit. I plan to put in another receptacle (wired from the lighting circuit) to power the two beer signs, but just haven’t gotten around to it.

drill press wall

The next area is my workbench. I added two receptacles over the bench and there is still the existing (shared outdoor) circuit as well. I still use the existing circuit for lower power items like the radio and battery charger.

bench area


The final conduit run is to the wall where I will be building my new miter saw bench and storage cabinets.

cabinet wall run

I put in three new 120V receptacles and added another 240V receptacle tapping power from the existing outlet (the one on the right). The conduit run off the 240V outlet on the right that goes to the right feeds the outlet behind the bandsaw.

cabinet wall

Each of the 4-outlet 120V boxes is fed by both new circuits. The duplex outlet on the left in each box is one circuit and the right is the other. This way I can manage which items are run on each circuit but still have access to each circuit at each location.

After the miter saw bench and storage cabinets are built, I plan to put up some pegboard along the entire length of the bench and thus hiding the conduit and leaving only the receptacles exposed for a cleaner final look.

I also finally picked up a dust collector.

dust collector

It’s the Harbor Freight one and it seems to work pretty well so far. I do plan to upgrade the filter bag to a pleated filter canister and also build a cyclonic/baffled pre-separator. I decided to go with the Rockler Dust Right system for now and got the long 4’-28’ hose. It works well, but I will eventually plumb in a permanent system and keep the Dust Right hose for cleaning up the shop.

Stay tuned for the next storage project in the shop!

9 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


115172 posts in 2997 days

#1 posted 05-29-2010 03:25 AM

Good idea more power har har har

-- Custom furniture

View smitty22's profile


694 posts in 2367 days

#2 posted 05-29-2010 03:51 AM

Looks like the garage workshop project is well underway, much further along than mine, and I’m going to steal some ideas from you!
Thanks for the pictures.

-- Smitty

View HokieMojo's profile


2103 posts in 3148 days

#3 posted 05-29-2010 03:52 AM

I used a shared ground in my last blog. I don’t think I mentioned that in my last blog but I should have. IT really saves money and cuts down on how many wires you need to cram in an electrical box.

Mind if I ask you about your lighting? Are you happy with them? I think the best deal I can find are some 4 bulb T8 lithonia lights from home depot. I’m planning on 4-6 units total. Just wondering what you think. I’ll run conduit to do this similar to the conduit that you used.

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10850 posts in 2535 days

#4 posted 05-29-2010 03:58 AM

what´s those hanging plasticdingies with wheels , I thought it was a woodworkingshop….lol

niiiice mancave thow


View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3194 days

#5 posted 05-29-2010 04:43 AM

Never to many plugins. Don’t forget lots of lights. Shop is looking good.

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View captkerk's profile


169 posts in 2661 days

#6 posted 05-30-2010 01:44 PM


Those hanging plasticdingies are my nemesis. They are always left in various places on the floor around the shop until I get sick of them and hang them up! So hanging there is not so bad. :)


The three larger light fixtures are 8 foot T8s and the one smaller fixture has 4 four foot T12s. I got the T8s used, dirt cheap and got lucky that the bulbs are the same color range as the T12s I already had. They cast plenty of light and do a great job of keeping the garage well lit with the doors open or closed. The brightness blends well with natural sunshine with the doors open and help get rid of the dark areas in the back of the garage. I am only planning on adding one more 8 foot fixture and that will be over the new bank of cabinets/miter-saw bench, but I’m waiting until I build that bench to see if I will really need it.

View HokieMojo's profile


2103 posts in 3148 days

#7 posted 05-30-2010 04:31 PM

Thanks for the response. I think the lights are going to be 30% of my total budget. I almost got a bunch used, but I missed it by about an hour on craigslist. Thanks for the response. I’ve enjoyed the blog. I hoep it keeps going so well.

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10850 posts in 2535 days

#8 posted 05-30-2010 05:45 PM

just what to your nemesis´s get older and leave bycycles , rollerblades, skateboards
in front of your shop/garagedoor and you discover them under your foot
when you have a big box in your arms….....gess what will happen…....hope there
is someone with a vidiocamera and a cellfone to call 112….....LOL.
naa kidden you …......hope it never happen to you…....don´t ask how I know
it´s painfull…......just laugh with me

take care


View dbhost's profile


5590 posts in 2652 days

#9 posted 06-03-2010 10:06 PM

You are a couple of steps ahead of me in some areas here. I love what you have done so far…

-- My workshop blog can be found at

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics