The American Craftsman WorkShop #3: Moving Along!

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Blog entry by Todd A. Clippinger posted 02-06-2008 06:47 AM 2671 reads 1 time favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Finishing the Shop Part 3 of The American Craftsman WorkShop series Part 4: The Next Section »

Last night

I got the walls primed with 2 coats of Kilz. The sheetrock had been sitting in my shop 4 years and it really needed it.


I put 2 coats of paint on the wall today. I have some walls in the shop already finished. I color matched the wall paint to my Jet equipment and I call it “Jet” white. It is an off-white that looks good with the trim and ceiling being a bright white color.


I installed the outlets. I put in 6 double gang boxes, that gives me 12 oultets. I run 2 circuits. The oulets in the left half of the boxes are one circuit and the outlet in the right are another. This allows me to keep from loading one breaker up too much. I keep all of my outlet boxes in the shop the same height as the light switches. That means no bending over to plug in (I’m a grandpa you know, that makes me old).

Installing Outlets.

MrTrim Where Are You?

After installing the outlets and covers, I had to make a materials run for the trim. I just used 1×4 MDF material. It is perfect for the paint grade trim in the shop. I use butt joints for a simple trim style but I reinforce the joints with biscuits to keep them together over time.

Finishing Trimwork

After that it is caulk and fill nail holes. Tomorrow I will paint the trim and move all the “furniture” back against the wall. Then I can start on the next section.

Projects should soon follow. Possibly video? We’ll see! I have a technical curve to climb, I might have to call on the “Teenage Woodworker” for tech support (I got my eye on you Boy).


I hope that you guys get the bug and get motivated to finish some of the work on your shop or house. I am anxious to get this done so that I can do some work on our house. I have been gone so long I am excited about the honey-do list.

Remember – When Momma’s happy, Everybody’s happy!

Peace, Love, and Woodworking

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

20 comments so far

View gizmodyne's profile


1779 posts in 4085 days

#1 posted 02-06-2008 07:29 AM

The shop looks great. You are jamming along. (Are your feet covering the warning sticker on that step ladder?)

-- -John "Do I have to keep typing a smiley? Just assume it's a joke."

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4094 days

#2 posted 02-06-2008 07:33 AM

Yes they are.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3983 days

#3 posted 02-06-2008 07:39 AM

Ah, brings back memories of finishing my shop. Doing the electrical gets zen like.

Looks like you are almost done. Keep at it.

Looking good!

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

View Grumpy's profile


23916 posts in 3846 days

#4 posted 02-06-2008 07:42 AM

I am just doing the finishing touches to renovating our bathroom todd. I have a rough idea what you are going through. You certainly are a man of many talents. Good luck with the renos.

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

View Dorje's profile


1763 posts in 3992 days

#5 posted 02-06-2008 07:53 AM

Looks great – and thanks for the reminder to get off my butt and finish some work on the house…

...not sure it’s gonna work, but I like the idea of it.

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View Tomcat1066's profile


942 posts in 3791 days

#6 posted 02-06-2008 12:12 PM

The shop keeps looking better and better!

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View mrtrim's profile


1696 posts in 3875 days

#7 posted 02-06-2008 01:53 PM

so thats what your up too !! you know when your kids are real little and they get quiet you can bet thier either crappin there britches or coloring on the walls , i been here more than a week wondering what in the world is that clippinger boy up too ? lol sure enuff hes coloring on the walls lol good for you todd . its great to get to do some nice stuff for ourselves once in while lookin great too ! you might think your gettin one up on me by pimpin out your shop but not so fast ! while you were being quiet i was out paying the lease on a new shop ! its abou 4 times as big as my current shop , so i may be getting quiet myself after th 15 th .

View Greg Wurst's profile

Greg Wurst

794 posts in 3827 days

#8 posted 02-06-2008 03:03 PM

I love electrical work. Something about high voltage and potential disaster if something is done wrong just appeals to me. :)

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

View Greg3G's profile


815 posts in 4080 days

#9 posted 02-06-2008 03:30 PM

I have a phobia when it comes to electial. I hire that stuff out. I’ll do just about anything else, plumbing, insulation, anything but electrical.

Todd, the Shop look great. Look forward to see the final set up. (need some ideas myself)

BTW…why do they put a warning lable on a ladder with only two steps? Seems like a contradiction in there somewhere.

-- Greg - Charles Town, WV

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4094 days

#10 posted 02-06-2008 03:41 PM

Greg – It’s black to black, white to white, and ground everything.

I don’t do plumbing or electrical on my jobs because of the insurance and laws, but I can do everything on my own house. I set a new main panel and electrical mast on my house all to code. I had to have it verified by the inspector or the power company would not turn the power back on!

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 3957 days

#11 posted 02-06-2008 04:32 PM

I hate and am scared of electricity. I never could really understand how it worked. So, I learned the simplest way, like you said, Todd, Black to Black and White to White. I moved the outlets up like you did and really appreciate it. You will as well. After all, we are grandpas. It is really looking great.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 4309 days

#12 posted 02-06-2008 04:45 PM

Just about time to make sawdust!

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4024 posts in 4059 days

#13 posted 02-06-2008 06:38 PM

Any thought to pulling Cat5 cable for a hard-wired ethernet out there in the shop?

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View Dadoo's profile


1789 posts in 3985 days

#14 posted 02-06-2008 09:29 PM

I like your idea using dual circuits Todd. Did you wire them for 15 or 20 amp? And did you install them on separate legs of the 240vac circuit? Cuz….using two pigtails into one 4×4 box could give you a 240vac outlet that you could put anywhere in the shop; anywhere that you have those dual circuit boxes that is. Even though it would only be 20amp, it would work. Am I making sense? It was a long night at work and I’m waiting for the coffee to kick in!

Guess it’s gettin time for me to go finish my shop walls too!

-- Bob Vila would be so proud of you!

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4094 days

#15 posted 02-07-2008 12:50 AM

The wires come in as 2 separate legs of 12-2 with ground. I wired them for 20 amp.

I did not plan on 220 on that wall but I can always make it happen.

I did not plan on Cat5 although I used to have a phone line out there. What little it was exposed got gnawed in half from rabbits that got under the shop. I no longer use a landline to the house anyway. We have an Apple network and the Airport Extreme is fast and has a strong signal out to the shop. I will probably use the old computer out there when we upgrade to a bigger screen in the house.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

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