At least five years ago I cleaned out an old garrison garage at the family home, took out a center wall and made a 25×25 ft shop. It looked great. Really nice. Everything in it’s place, drafting table, bulletin board, Dry erase marker board. All my power tools on one side where the dust collector was and an assembly area on the other side. I made a ‘new fangled bench’ which to this day is a nice bench. The original shop form back then can be seen at my workshop page.
The shop functioned and I’ve made a lot of neat things over the years. Coming from a sort of woodworking newbie, asking a lot of questions, and developing some skills. Since then, this year, I’ve finally gotten to the point where our whole house remodel is done enough to be comfortable even though I’ve got lots of odds and ends to complete. Some of those odds and ends is furniture. I’ve decided to stop and redo the shop first.
It still functions but I’ve really sort of worn it out a bit. I need to rethink and redo the dust collection system. The way I put it together was okay but it’s finally falling apart and doesn’t do the best job of dust collection. I’ve acquired more power tools and keeping them on one side of the shop makes for a crowded situation. I have to remodel.
The first thing to do is to get rid of a large against the wall workbench with lots of drawers in it. Today, I started that. I pulled out the drawers and stacked them. The stuff in them I realize is mostly hoarders stuff and it can be relocated or thrown away. My older brother had built the bench years ago before I inherited it. It was a good bench but sort of useless. He was the kind of guy who over built things by a factor of 10x. What a a job knocking it apart. Spikes the size of my finger to hold it together. I finally got it into the truck ready to haul to the dump.
I have this thing about projects that require demolition. I like to build things but tearing things down is a drag. I have to force myself to start the demolition and when it’s done I feel the obstacle to my doing something is getting by the demolition part. I’m glad this part is done.
Plans for the shop:
~Redo the dust collection system using pvc and connected only to the ‘chip’ making tools like planer, jointer and router table.
~Moving the fine dust tools to the previous bench side of the room and connecting them to a large shop vac which I think exits less dust. Bringing just dust making tools too the vac should handle the load pretty good.
~Taking my table saw off the metal stand and putting it on a wooden one that is a bit lower (I’m not that tall), and building a dust encloser with vac beneath it.
~ Giving away my ‘new fangled workbench’ to my future son in law. (He’s indicated he wants it) and building an assembly table that is the same height as the table saw so it doubles as an outfeed table.
~Putting my much used 12” compound sliding miter saw on a mobile cart with wings that is the same height as the outfeed table and table saw so longer wood can be supported by them.
~ Replacing burned out ballasts in some lights.
~ Moving most used clamps and other tools to the new assembly table.
~ Building in a corner of the outfeed table with holes and vac to collect dust while sanding.
~ Integrating the Kreg pocket hole jig into the assembly bench as I use it often.
~ Integrating one pop-up stop in the assembly bench for planing and stopping wood during routing.
~ Making one side of the bench with two pipe clamps to use as a vise.
~ Designing the bench top over hang wide enough and thin enough to use as a clamping edge. I find that I clamp woods down a lot instead of putting them in a vise or using a stop.
~ I find that drawers, even closed, fill up with sawdust. I want cabinets or drawers inside cabinets for the assembley table. Still dusty but hopefully less and easier to clean out.
Here are a few pictures of today’s demolition. With this done, things will start happening. The renovation includes a thorough cleaning and repair of wall areas too.
Where the bench was before today
The bench headed for the dump.
The only thing left.. the drawers
An old picture. You can see the bench I tore out on the left.
-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.