|Project by Mike Robinson||posted 11-27-2010 11:17 PM||4566 views||12 times favorited||27 comments|
After several projects for the wife, new kitchen, bathroom and a few odd pieces of furniture, I was the given the green light for a hangout and place of my own (Yay finally!) Because I have several interests and hobbies besides woodworking; modeling, die-cast cars, and aviation related art, I wanted a place where I could put my stuff on display and not have it all packed away in boxes, plus a place where I can work from home on days when the weather is inclement or I just don’t feel like driving into the office. The only room in the house that was available was the basement, which was totally unfinished and served as a combination junk accumulation point, storage, modeling area and all around dust catcher. My goal was to take what you see in the last picture, and turn it into the first. I had 14 by 28 feet to work with, and She Who Must Be Obeyed gave her blessing that the entire basement was mine to do with as I please.
First order of business was to pack up stuff and do a major clean out, then work began. Because it’s all below grade, I wanted to make sure it was as waterproof as possible. The entire floor and cement block walls received three coats of Dry-Lok, and I installed a bigger sump pump with a battery back up just in case. Once the Dry-Lok was cured, I framed out the outter walls with 2×6 studs, because I wanted built-in cabinets for my die cast collection, and for additional insulation to keep the room comfortable. I prewired the room for audio and visual equipment and because my existing service panel was full, installed a 100 amp sub panel and ran new circuits for electric and lights, all under the watchful eye of my local neighborhood electrical inspector. Once the wiring was done, I used 3/4 MDF and my raised panel bit set to create the raised panel lower walls, and 1/2 drywall above. The MDF worked well, as my plan was to paint the walls rather than stain them, and it was far more economical to do that than glue up planks for the panels, as it took only 4 sheets to do the lower walls. I then installed the raised ceiling in the center, with recessed rope lighting going all the way around, concealed my mahogany trim. All the trim in the room is 3/4 mahogany, clear satin lacquered with no stain. the rest of the ceiling is a drop ceiling, which I was forced to use because of plumbing that ran below the level of the upstairs floor joists. The floor is a marvelous product called Allure Traffic Master, a vinyl plank flooring system that is easy to lay, requires no preinstall work and looks the real deal. I used Teak, but they also have it in lighter shades, as well as tile and stone effects. It can be found at Home Depot, and is in my opinion, the best flooring to install over concrete below grade, or above grade for that matter.
The display cabinets are constructed of 3/4 black melamine, edged in mahogany, with all the glass and mirrors cut to order. Lighting was installed, both LED for the main lights, then incandescent tube lights in housings made such that the light illuminates just the edge of the glass in the back giving an greenish glow to the rest of the glass shelf. The built in wall cabinets were constructed the same way using 3/4 black melamine with a mirror back, and glass shelves. A mahogany center support was installed after because the weight of the cars was bowing the glass shelves quite a bit. I have glass cut for the doors, but they have to be built yet. I opted to illuminate these with track lighting from the ceiling, rather than built in lighting. Mahogany credenzas provide more storage along the walls, and these can be moved around at whim to change the room layout if I need a change. Future additions will be red or maroon leather love-seat and recliner, as well as some end or coffee tables. A 40 inch Sony HD LCD TV along with my Old School stereo receiver and amplifier and I am as close to heaven as one can get.
I am very pleased with the end results, and I now have an escape from the estrogen permeated fog that envelopes this house at times. The only drawback is perhaps I did a TOO nice of a job on it, as I often have to shoo out teenagers because they like sitting down here and watching TV.
Thanks for looking,