Question for Central Florida LJ's

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Forum topic by Jim Savage posted 03-16-2011 07:53 PM 1522 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Jim Savage

26 posts in 3225 days

03-16-2011 07:53 PM

I have a friend from college living in Central Florida and he is interested in setting up a shop.

He’s wondering about space needs, such as air conditioning and humidity control.

Can he work in an unheated and uncooled garage space? Will the humidity rust his tools? Will his wood give him problems if it is kept in a garage? What about supplies such as glue, stains, poly, etc.?

Any direction I can pass along to him would be appreciated.


7 replies so far

View sandhill's profile


2128 posts in 3952 days

#1 posted 04-21-2011 11:06 PM

Just found your question – The answer is yes and yes
I work from a garage and yes the tools will rust most of all machine surfaces but tools that go unused will get rusty in a few weeks but not to worry just give them a good coat of Bowshield T-9 let them sit a while and as soon as you wipe them down get a good coat of Butchers wax on then (which should be done any way and he should not have a problem.
Where is your friend at?

View SergioC's profile


82 posts in 2696 days

#2 posted 04-21-2011 11:56 PM

It also depends on how close to the coast he is. I’m about 40 miles inland on the gulf side near Tampa, and I don’t have most of these problems. I work out of my garage and don’t mind the heat in the summer, but it does get brutally hot. I have a small fan to circulate air. My tools don’t rust, but I take care of them also as Sandhill said. I’ve never had wood problems other than plywood- must be stored flat, but I think that’s anywhere. No issues with supplies.

View oldhickory's profile


9 posts in 3088 days

#3 posted 04-22-2011 05:49 PM

I live in lakeland fl. been in business of woodworking for several years if your freind live close by have him give me a call he can stop by ,he can see how I do things and we can dicsuss his concerns

View rogerw's profile


262 posts in 2718 days

#4 posted 04-23-2011 03:04 PM

Palm Bay, Fl…. I live about 10 miles inland on the east coast, as a crow flies, and don’t have too much problem. Fans help in the summer time. As far as rust… I keep a beach towel on my table saw which keeps the moisture from building up on the table. It’s a trick I learned years ago from my uncle. It really works. Jigs don’t stay true forever so I don’t get too extravagant with them. Tend to make them on the fly for the required task at hand rather than for the long term. It’s probably more of a storage issue as space is limited in my garage/shop. The toughest issue I have is not dripping sweat on the wood!

-- >> my shop teacher used to say "do the best at everything you make for your mom because you're going to see it for the rest of your life!" <<

View Gary's profile


1291 posts in 4353 days

#5 posted 05-01-2011 04:08 PM

I just saw this thread; I live halfway between Gainesville and Ocala. That’s pretty close to halfway between coasts too.
I have an unconditioned shop.
There are only a few days a year when it’s really toooooo cold to work.
The heat is more difficult to deal with; several months of the year produce constant sweat.
How it will affect you is difficult to say because each of us has different tolerances. Fans help.
As to rust: I keep plywood or hardwood on the surface of my cast-iron tools when not in use and rust
has not been a problem.
My planes sit on wooden shelves; they’re not rusting.

Having said it can be done: IF you can afford to condition your shop, do it.
Good luck.

-- Gary, Florida

View jonasramus's profile


24 posts in 3004 days

#6 posted 05-02-2011 03:21 AM

I live in Deltona, about halfway between Orlando and Daytona. I also work in a garage shop without any climate control. Generally speaking my tools stay rust free, although I do liberally clean and wax my cast iron surfaces about 4 times per year.

To be honest, I have had more humidity problems with wood movement and with finishing than with rusting my tools. Bringing a project into an airconditioned house that was built in 90% humidity always makes me nervous, and paints and finishes sure do seem to take longer to cure in the garage than in the house.

Otherwise, I would say Florida has been good for my woodworking. (I used to live in Chicago.) It has become nearly a year round hobby. There are only a few weeks in January when it is too cold to work in the shop, six or eight months when its perfect, and 3ish months when its so damn hot that I can hardly stand to be out there (but normally do it anyway).

-- Jeff, Deltona Florida

View Camper's profile


232 posts in 2885 days

#7 posted 05-02-2011 04:23 AM

Live in Tampa FL. No big problems with tools, wood and materials. Heat is pretty brutal for a couple of months but a fan helps, the most annoying part is sweat dripping from your forehead onto your work piece…worse if you do not have hair like me….

I sometimes will wheel tools out to the driveway and get a good half a day of work in on weekends while it is shaded (depends on the trees and your houses orientation and neighbors…I got lucky). But as soon as you see the clouds in the late afternoon, pack it in otherwise your tools may be drenched before you know it…

-- Tampa-FL

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