Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Final Workshop
Old 08-13-2014, 04:27 PM   #1
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 555
Final Workshop

I'm rather new here--surfed thru the site a few time in the last couple years and am now about to pull the trigger on retiring (<1 Year). One last task to accomplish or at least start before I leave work....

As my monicker suggests, I like to tinker with all sorts of things--electronics, cars, guns, motorcycles. My DW (I assume that means "Dear Wife" and not a cursed spouse!) is encouraging me to build the Garagemahal. We are in a great location and I expect this to last me until I can no longer turn a wrench or see an oscilloscope trace. At that point it may be sold or become a small home.

My question to other tinkerers, builders, wood workers, mechanics, machinists.... What are the requirements for your Final Workshop? I'm just hitting 50 but I have some back issues so I am planning on a vehicle lift--in-floor with the ability to lift only one side as an adjustable worktable, probably a shop crane of some sort. Good lighting is another big concern.

Any other items you can think of that allow you to keep doing things in the shop as your body wears out and eyesight degenerates?

Related item but hopefully one I am a long way from--any thoughts on how to dispose of tools and projects when one is no longer able to use them or how to help a spouse dispose of them when we pass on?

Sorry, reading the above sounds kind of depressing for such an exciting time in my life! Really looking forward to setting up shop and doing all those projects I never had time for while working for "the man"!

ArkTinkerer
__________________

__________________
ArkTinkerer is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 08-13-2014, 05:09 PM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
zinger1457's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,452
I've been wanting/planning to build a shop for my woodworking hobby so I can get all my tools out of the garage. Definitely put some thought into your power requirements. Many of the bigger woodworking tools (table saws) use 220V, some even require 220v 3ph. Can never have too many electrical outlets. Lighting as you mentioned is a big one. How will you handle heating/cooling if needed? Maybe not a concern based on your needs but with woodworking a good dust collection and air filtration system are a must.
__________________

__________________
zinger1457 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2014, 05:17 PM   #3
Moderator
Walt34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern WV Panhandle
Posts: 16,508
One thought on 220v 3ph. A guy up the street where we used to live wanted a gigunda air compressor for his 4-bay garage and found that the electrical code forbid 3ph in a residential property. So if you're planning on it check availability in your area before buying anything that will need it.
__________________
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
Walt34 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2014, 06:07 PM   #4
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 555
3 phase would be nice but is rare in a residential area. For machine tools a lot of people make/purchase a converter so they can run 3 phase. I also hear it is expensive for a residence. I am planning multiple 220V outlets. The building will be designed to transition to a residence. So there will be 220V for locations that would be a water heateer, range, dryer. The only extra would probably be near where the lift will go. The others will be available for a welder or other machine tools.

I recall that some places in Europe run 2 phases to each box. They can then wire their outlets as either 220V or one leg to each outlet for 110V. Not compatible with US codes or easily available outlets unfortunately...

ArkTinkerer
__________________
ArkTinkerer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2014, 06:53 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Htown Harry's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 1,516
The conversion idea adds complexity, but it's probably worthwhile. A big manly shop built without thought to an alternative use might limit the property's appeal to future buyers, like a pool does.

I'm thinking an architect would probably send you down one of two paths.

In one scenario, the shell of your shop will form the walls and floor of future living space. Barn conversions might give you ideas.


The other might be that the shell you build will be 1-1/2 or two stories. There's a ground floor shop and mezzanine storage to start, with a future ground floor garage and a finished studio apartment or guest quarters upstairs.



(pictures are from houzz.com. lots of ideas there.)
__________________
No doubt a continuous prosperity, though spendthrift, is preferable to an economy thriftily moral, though lean. Nevertheless, that prosperity would seem more soundly shored if, by a saving grace, more of us had the grace to save.

Life Magazine editorial, 1956
Htown Harry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2014, 07:11 PM   #6
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 555
Idea right now is to build the shell of a ranch style house that would be like a two story on one side with barn doors. That would be the side with the lift. Double doors for the front door and a wrap around porch with carport. I'll try and post a cad drawing later.

I'll probably have to pay a bit of a premium for the rafters to do a clear span but if I put the plumbing in the slab there should be very little to get in the way of making it a livable residence later.

One item that occurred to me was security cameras. Not just for theft but so that DW can look in on me and be assured I haven't removed any body parts....

ArkTinkerer
__________________
ArkTinkerer is offline   Reply With Quote
Final Workshop
Old 08-13-2014, 07:40 PM   #7
Moderator
Ronstar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: A little ways southwest of Chicago
Posts: 9,341
Final Workshop

Great posts, ArkTinkerer,

Nothing more important than a great workshop in retirement. And it looks like you're planning the ultimate shop.

I have spent time in mine almost every day since retiring 4 months ago. I built it in 2000 primarily to store my boat. But I moved the boat to the attached garage and now my workshop is dedicated to my woodworking projects. I've learned a few things about workshops since I built mine.

1. Don't build one that is too small.
2. Don't skimp on the electrical- best if it has it's own service, lots of lighting and receptacles
3. Should have a bathroom.
4. Should have separate areas for woodworking, cars,etc. don't want sawdust in the car area.
5. Floor drains in the car area with ability to wash cars indoors
6. Good heating in areas where you'll be working.
7. Car lift.
8. Lots of storage space, with organized tool storage.
9. Tv, wifi, computer, fridge
10. Security system, cameras.
11. Garage doors at least 8' tall.


Sent from my iPad using Early Retirement Forums
__________________
Ronstar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2014, 09:21 PM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,318
Don't forget about overhead outlets/receptacles. We have separate areas for different activities, woodworking, metal working pyrography, auto repair, etc. You need lots of storage cabinets/shelving. A rolling cart is a must have with locking wheels. We don't have cameras inside but do have an intercom between the house and the garage. Stools, stationary and adjustable, wood and metal. We have tall wood stools in the wood working area. Low rolling stools for working on cars and bikes. Metal stools in the metal and soldering area.
Regarding tool disposal, my uncle is downsizing and selling all his tools. He offered for sale to family and friends first then put things on Craigslist and Ebay. There is also a consignment shop for tools that he used. In our area you get nothing for tools. His tools looked brand new.
__________________
splitwdw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2014, 10:11 PM   #9
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 11,615
About heating: Radiant slab heating is all the rage in homes, and makes for happy feet, but I probably wouldn't be tempted to install it in a shop. The slab takes a long time to heat up, and if your use is intermittent, that's not a good fit. Plus, you might need to drill the floor someday (add another lift, etc) and hitting a heating tube would not be good.

If this is on the same lot as your house, install a few empty conduits and some wire sets between home and shop when installing your other utilities. One of the wire sets can be used to activate your AC/furnace from inside your house without going out to the shop. Get out of bed, hit the switch t get the HVAC going, the shop is warmed up (or cooled off) by the time you've finished you coffee and breakfast.

If the shop is not near your home, you can use a GSM cell phone switch to do the same thing. It works great, and there's almost zero ongoing cost for the phone subscription of you do it right. (Let me know if you want more info).

I don't use my shop every day, but am really glad I insulated it well. I never run the AC except when I'm out there, and in the winter the heat just keeps things from freezing between uses. Still, the insulation tempers the highs and lows so it is often very pleasant out there. In the summer at 1 PM it is often 20 deg F cooler inside than outside, with no use of AC.
If your peepers are headed downhill like mine, then you know you'll need lots of lights.

Windows: They do brighten the place up, but are an invitation to getting your tools and treasures ripped off (especially if the shop is out on its own somewhere). Plus, even the best ones leak heat more than a wall. If you build in enough for the place to later be a house, consider making tight-fitting rigid foam insulated covers for the inside, and maybe some well secured bars, too.

Noise: Got folks nearby that will be bothered by hammering, riveting, a compressor, etc? Consider the normal soundproofing steps (decoupling the drywall from the framing, etc).

If you'll be moving sheet goods around, you'll appreciate ceilings that are at least 9 feet above the floor, 10 would be better.
__________________
"Freedom begins when you tell Mrs. Grundy to go fly a kite." - R. Heinlein
samclem is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2014, 04:19 PM   #10
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 555
Radiant heating doesn't make economic sense in our zone. I like the idea but economics as well as problems of not knowing where the wall will eventually go means its not a good idea!

10'+ wall on the single story side and 16'+ on the two story should give me lots of headroom.

Can't really do plumbing. Garage is on adjoining lot but fronts on street around the corner. Seems they didn't run sewer up that street. Couple other houses must run thru other yards to get to service. For me, they way $40-60K to run the mains and then I still have to pay for hookup. I plan to plumb the slab and go to the side of the building but cap the lines off until it is more reasonable to hook up.

We own a house across the street from where the garage is going. Likely choice to downsize to eventually. Will probably do a wireless link between buildings for data/video.

Power is no problem, pole is in the corner of the yard. Still checking on gas service.

Ceiling outlets--had planned on one or two but will give it more thought.

GarageJournal.com is a pretty good site for this kind of thing. I will probably ask for input there about the build at some point.

I remember seeing something about a machinist who used some garage door track to make a trolly kind of hoist that went above each of his machines so he could move heavier items. Don't think it would do an big engine block but it would move 100lbs safely. Thinking about that but it would probably have to wait. The layout of the shop will probably change as I use it the first couple years.

ArkTinkerer
__________________
ArkTinkerer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2014, 04:30 PM   #11
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 555
Here is a link to the hoist--

Shop built hoisting crane
__________________
ArkTinkerer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2014, 04:32 PM   #12
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 555
Sorry that is "a system". Not the system I was originally thinking of.
__________________
ArkTinkerer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2014, 04:52 PM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
seraphim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,492
I merely made friends with a mechanic who owns his own shop. Can also order parts tax free at a hefty discount lol...



Sent from my iPad using Early Retirement Forum
__________________
"Growing old is no excuse for growing up."
seraphim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2014, 04:52 PM   #14
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
seraphim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,492
Don't forget the paint booth...


Sent from my iPad using Early Retirement Forum
__________________
"Growing old is no excuse for growing up."
seraphim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2014, 06:18 PM   #15
Moderator
Ronstar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: A little ways southwest of Chicago
Posts: 9,341
Quote:
Originally Posted by ArkTinkerer View Post
......GarageJournal.com is a pretty good site for this kind of thing. I will probably ask for input there about the build at some point......
Yep - I got (and still get) a lot of great ideas from that forum.
__________________
Ronstar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2014, 08:27 PM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,318
Quote:
Originally Posted by ArkTinkerer View Post
......Ceiling outlets--had planned on one or two but will give it more thought.
We have 2 ceiling outlets by our hydraulic lift and 2 in the woodshop area. In the woodshop area, it allows us to have our drill press, bandsaw, miniature lathe and planer in the center of the room. The ones by the lift get used for trickle chargers and power tools.
Forgot there are 3 ceiling outlets in the woodshop area, 1 is used for the ceiling mounted air cleaner.
__________________
splitwdw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2014, 07:54 AM   #17
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
DFW_M5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 4,982
Nothing special, but I would want a good epoxy coated floor and large screen TV. Aside from everything already mentioned, for a true dream garage, send Jay an email for other ideas.
__________________
Doing things today that others won't, to do things tomorrow that others can't. Of course I'm referring to workouts, not robbing banks.
DFW_M5 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2014, 10:45 AM   #18
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,841
From my point of view (I'm a 66-year-old woman):

The ideal workshop would be in an outbuilding, NOT in the garage. The outbuilding would be large, with electricity, heat/AC, and plumbing. I don't really do many projects these days, so I wouldn't need a workshop myself. But if my dear F and I ever live together, this would be the ideal workshop for him IMO.

The ideal garage for me would have a coated floor for easy cleanup, room to park all vehicles easily without having to dodge "stuff", an automatic garage door opener, and plenty of very organized storage for garden tools/lawnmower and hand tools. No washer/dryer since ideally that would be inside the house.
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2014, 12:38 PM   #19
Moderator
Ronstar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: A little ways southwest of Chicago
Posts: 9,341
Quote:
Originally Posted by W2R View Post
From my point of view (I'm a 66-year-old woman):

The ideal workshop would be in an outbuilding, NOT in the garage. The outbuilding would be large, with electricity, heat/AC, and plumbing. I don't really do many projects these days, so I wouldn't need a workshop myself. But if my dear F and I ever live together, this would be the ideal workshop for him IMO.

The ideal garage for me would have a coated floor for easy cleanup, room to park all vehicles easily without having to dodge "stuff", an automatic garage door opener, and plenty of very organized storage for garden tools/lawnmower and hand tools. No washer/dryer since ideally that would be inside the house.
The workshop has to be an outbuilding. A 2000 sf garage just doesn't look right attached to the 1000 sf house that we downsizing geezers are looking for.
__________________
Ronstar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2014, 02:35 PM   #20
Recycles dryer sheets
Indigo Mule's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Oakland
Posts: 97
Don't forget the comfy chairs for people to hang out and shoot the breeze. I had a friend whose workshop was a popular place to work or hang out; his wife complained that nobody would hang out in her sewing room--but
she had no seating for visitors!
__________________

__________________
Indigo Mule is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Upcoming workshop classes at my local credit union cute fuzzy bunny Life after FIRE 2 10-02-2008 10:17 PM
Wealth advantage workshop SecondCor521 FIRE and Money 8 01-29-2007 11:26 PM
China and the Final War for Resources Helen FIRE and Money 22 08-03-2005 07:50 PM
Final Four ronin Other topics 7 04-03-2005 04:59 PM
FireCalc Newbie: Wide variability-final portfolio Delawaredave5 FIRE and Money 14 03-16-2005 08:50 AM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:10 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.