Where does the time go?

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Blog entry by nickman posted 02-29-2008 07:06 AM 871 reads 0 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Well this winter has been pretty eventless out in the shop. All my tools out there just sitting idle, while the mess on the workbench grows taller and more diverse. Lately my only reason for going into the garage/shop are to grab a screwdriver or get the drill to hang shelves or what have you inside the house. The job and the family have kept me busy lately.

You know, I think it would help in the winter if the shop were properly heated. I have considered having a gas line run out there and mounting something on the wall that’s shared with the house. Anybody have anything like that, or can make a recommendation? I wonder what kind of cost I’m looking at?

10 comments so far

View brunob's profile


2277 posts in 4167 days

#1 posted 02-29-2008 07:21 AM

I use a Mr. Heater hung from the ceiling. I have a seperate LP tank at the shop. The heater cost about $400. Works great.

-- Bruce from Central New, if you'll pardon me, I have some sawdust to make.

View Tom Adamski's profile

Tom Adamski

306 posts in 3768 days

#2 posted 02-29-2008 07:29 AM

Nick, I too have a detached unheated garage, and it really puts a bind on my woodworking. I picked up a small 2year old gas furnace from Craigs List and plan to install it this summer, and be ready for next fall. I need some of that flexible gas line to bury from the house to the garage. I guess the big box stores don’t cary it as it is intended for plumbers. And you know what they charge… Anyone have a plumbing connection in the Chicago area that can get me a better deal on this stuff?

“Shivering in Chicago”


-- Anybody can become a woodworker, but only a Craftsman can hide his mistakes.

View John Gray's profile

John Gray

2370 posts in 3883 days

#3 posted 02-29-2008 07:32 AM

Check out the Hotdawg by Modine they have several models available including one that uses outside air for combustion, no problems with sawdust and fire mix. I have that one and love it.

-- Only the Shadow knows....................

View Pretzel's profile


93 posts in 3743 days

#4 posted 02-29-2008 09:39 AM

I use the Legacy infrared gas heater, does great for drying finishes, also has a forced air fan. spent most of winter in a tee shirt. cost was around $150.00

-- Pretzel L8agn

View Tim Pursell's profile

Tim Pursell

499 posts in 3780 days

#5 posted 02-29-2008 02:02 PM

Here’s something on Ebay:
@ $2.80/ft I hope your shop is close to the house!

I used 3/4” steel pipe to do my shop it was a lot of work. Nicor (the gas co. around here) uses a yelow or orange plastic pipe to get from the main to your house. That HAS to be cheaper. Maybe check with a few local HVAC contractors? If you are a confirmed Do it your selfer you could save$’s by renting a trencher & diging the trench yourself. Just have to wait till this never ending Chicago winter decides to leave us alone!


View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4297 days

#6 posted 02-29-2008 02:26 PM

Our local public utilities buried a gas line from my house gas meter to my garage. That was almost 20 years ago.

They only charged for the amount of gas line used.

I think the utility company would rather you did it this way, because they can sell more gas as an end result.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View Dadoo's profile


1789 posts in 3988 days

#7 posted 02-29-2008 02:51 PM

Old mobile home furnaces work quite well too. They’re forced air types, so you can add ducting to move the heat to those far corners. Most of them are jetted for propane too so you could get away with using a 200lb tank…depends actually on just how much time you spend in the garage/shop. They can be rejetted for natural gas quite easily too.

-- Bob Vila would be so proud of you!

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4297 days

#8 posted 02-29-2008 03:28 PM

Check out this thread on shop heating.

You’ll see a picture of my furnace setup.

I clicked search, shop heating on, on LJ’s, & found a lot of heating threads.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View Stacey's profile


19 posts in 3754 days

#9 posted 02-29-2008 03:38 PM


I know how you feel. It’s hard to find shop time when juggling family, job, renovating our century old house, and other commitments.

As to the heating question, I have been researching the subject lately as I’m in the process of building a shop and am leaning towards an electric packaged terminal air conditioner (PTAC) unit which essentially acts as a small heat pump. Similar to what you see in hotel rooms. I found out about them in the latest Tools and Shops issue from Fine Woodworking. For about $600, you can have both electric heat and air and they supposedly work great. I believe all you would need is access to a 220 line and just drop the unit in the wall. Plus, you don’t have to deal with running gas lines which I really didn’t want to do as my shop is over 100’ from my house. Hope this helps.


-- S. Box --- "But a Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever." - John Adams

View nickman's profile


27 posts in 3792 days

#10 posted 02-29-2008 05:49 PM

Thanks for the tips everybody, I’m going to check out some of these solutions. Need warmth!

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