New Woodshop Construction #7: An Hour Here, a Half-Hour There and a Few Saturday Mornings

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Blog entry by Patrick Jaromin posted 03-31-2008 04:40 AM 6455 reads 1 time favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 6: Hacking the Delta 50-875 Air Cleaner Part 7 of New Woodshop Construction series Part 8: Shop Air, and Sheet Goods Get A Home »

Over the past month I found very little contiguous time to make progress on the shop setup. Consequently I never felt like I had made significant enough progress in any given week to warrant a new post. While I’m still quite some distance from the finish line, I finally feel like I can actually say, once again, “I have a shop!”


Dust Collection Controls

I installed a half-dozen doorbell buttons around the shop, under bench tops near power tools, on the wall by the bandsaw and underneath the tablesaw fence next to the power switch. I installed a couple power outlets in the crawl space under the shop for the controller as well as my air compressor which I located in a corner of the crawl. I also programmed the air filter as I discussed in my last post to automatically switch on with the dust collector and off 2 minutes after the collector is switched off. I’m extremely pleased with how this has worked out.


Supplies Organized & Remaining Tools Installed

I finally managed to commit to drawer assignments for my tools and supplies. For the most part the drawers are logically organized, though a few of them are temporary “catch-alls” waiting for the day when I complete the upper cabinets. I enlisted the aid of my brother, sister-in-law and nephew to help wheel the 17” Grizzly bandsaw up a ramp and into the shop. This turned out to be not as difficult as I’d feared it would be. I also unboxed the Ridgid oscillating sander I’d purchased nearly 3 months ago and connected both to the dust collection drops installed previously. All the tools are in!


Clamp Racks

Following some quick research at my favorite site, I assembled and mounted some clamp racks for my rather modest pipe, parallel and bar clamp collection. I still have a number of spring and “C” clamps to hang, but I’m satisfied with the arrangement for now.


A Number of Tasks Remain

No matter how much I manage to accomplish, the list never really seems to get any shorter. Some tasks that remain are setting up dust collection for my router table and building an overarm blade guard for the table saw. The router table will require installing some kind of enclosure around the hanging router…which will take some time to devise. I’m also working on a design for a tall thin “drawer” to fill the 2 spaces in the RAS cabinet. These opening are roughly 36” tall by only 9” wide. I’m thinking that I’ll create a sliding angled vertical panels in one to hold router bits and a vertical pull-out panel in the other for miter/RAS/table/circular saw blade storage. Next steps also include major improvements to the “large piece assembly area”—which my wife insists upon calling a “garage.” Improvements include an updated lumber rack and sheet goods pen as well as some custom cabinets for “non-wood-related” storage…though I can’t imagine what that might be.


The bottom line is that I’m just about ready to get back to spending at least some time working “in” the shop instead of “on” the shop! Hooray!

(Originally Posted at

-- Patrick, Chicago, IL

17 comments so far

View Grumpy's profile


23841 posts in 3815 days

#1 posted 03-31-2008 04:51 AM

Patrick, that is one serious looking workshop. i am sure it will be the envy of many Jocks including me. great effort.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Karson's profile


35111 posts in 4364 days

#2 posted 03-31-2008 05:02 AM

I’m sure that Ms Debbie will want to visit now. great looking.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3738 days

#3 posted 03-31-2008 05:46 AM

Hi Patrick

Congratulation for the progress you have made on your shop. I am sure it will feel good working in the shop once again. Your shop is one of the nicest looking and will designed shops I have seen. Thanks for your inspiration!

I am getting bids from tappers now and ordering the cyclone tomorrow.

Have you ever built the venturi box by your miter box saw yet?

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3786 days

#4 posted 03-31-2008 11:58 AM


This is a beautiful shop. I love the walls and the hardwood floors. Wow. This is an upscale shop. You have designed it well and it is a visual delight to be in too.

Great job.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 3926 days

#5 posted 03-31-2008 01:22 PM

Well, Patrick, it looks like you got it done. Well thought out and functional. Well done.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Patrick Jaromin's profile

Patrick Jaromin

404 posts in 3796 days

#6 posted 03-31-2008 03:38 PM

Thanks, All!

Tom – I tried a couple cardboard mock up venturi boxes but there’s just not enough room behind the saw for it. At this point I’ve hooked up the built-in dust port, which has already become clogged once during use and also added a piece of 4” pipe with a narrow slit running the length behind the saw.

When I rigged this up I was unable to locate any jigsaw blades, so the “slit” was crudely “hacked out” with a drill and some pliers…I figured I’d make a neater version if it actually worked. The jury’s still out on that. For what it’s worth, here’s the pic:


I’m not sure how effective these measures are but it’s the best I’ve come up with thus far. I’m going to continue to experiment and look around at other woodworker’s solutions as time permits. Needless-to-say I’d love to hear about what others may have done and found effective.

-- Patrick, Chicago, IL

View Greg Wurst's profile

Greg Wurst

794 posts in 3796 days

#7 posted 03-31-2008 04:17 PM

Ah, what I wouldn’t give for a shop that nice!

-- You're a unique and special person, just like everyone else.

View Dominic Vanacora's profile

Dominic Vanacora

508 posts in 3833 days

#8 posted 03-31-2008 04:55 PM

Is there such a think as woodworker heaven. If so, you found it.
You have done what ever woodworker wish they could do.
Great Play Ground.

-- Dominic, Trinity, Florida...Lets be safe out there.

View Partridge's profile


296 posts in 3920 days

#9 posted 03-31-2008 09:30 PM

’’I installed a half-dozen doorbell buttons around the shop’’ are they to start 3hp DC and if so how. I would Like to do some thin like this.

-- I get out in the shop when I can

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3952 days

#10 posted 03-31-2008 09:38 PM

Nice shop. When I was laying out my shop I installed switches all around, but never ended up using them.

I have a long ranger remote which I always had to look all over for in my old shop.(because it was so small everything was stacked up all over the place and the remote was always under something.)

Now that I’m in my new shop it’s always in view and I never lose track of it, so I never hooked up the

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Patrick Jaromin's profile

Patrick Jaromin

404 posts in 3796 days

#11 posted 03-31-2008 09:53 PM

Partidge – yes, they are to stop/stop the DC system. There are a number of ways to accomplish something like this. Since I was already using Insteon/X10 for my home and shop and am something of a geek, I chose an X-10 based solution. In order to eliminate the need for toggle switches (wired 4-way) I built a very simple latching circuit from plans I round online that hooks up to an X-10 “powerflash” device. The upshot is that I can toggle the DC system on or off from any of 1/2 dozen simple pushbutton (doorbell) switches. It’s working just great for me…I’m very happy I set this up. For more details and a video, see my blog post on this:

Gary—yeah, wish my shop were as big as yours…though I have an X10 RF remote that works for this, I just don’t like carrying it around. I’ve hung it by a workbench and currently use it there instead of installing a fixed switch at that location.

-- Patrick, Chicago, IL

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 3921 days

#12 posted 04-01-2008 12:19 AM

What a beautiful shop! Congrats…I love the knotty pine on the walls, and the skylights are a great touch. Looks like you gave the layout some thought too. I have to admit I’m jealous…I would be in there all the time!


View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 3921 days

#13 posted 04-01-2008 01:23 PM

Now taking a second look, is there a skylight or are they just lights? Doah!


View Patrick Jaromin's profile

Patrick Jaromin

404 posts in 3796 days

#14 posted 04-01-2008 01:50 PM

David – You were correct the first time.

There are 2 skylights with light fixtures around/between them.

-- Patrick, Chicago, IL

View Freddo's profile


85 posts in 3661 days

#15 posted 04-24-2008 07:50 PM

There’s a bit of heaven on earth! Nice walls – so inviting and warm feeling with the natural light coming in. Enjoy your space!

-- God bless! Freddo (Northern - NJ) Our Creator designed us to create - so use WOOD!

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