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An Hour Here, a Half-Hour There and a Few Saturday Mornings

Posted by on March 30, 2008

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!

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