Reclaiming a Woodworking Space

  • Posted on: 30 October 2016
  • By: Jay Oyster

Before getting it into the shop, the outfeed table prepped for leg surgerySince I posted about possibly getting back in the shop, a great deal has happened around our homestead. Getting the shop ready to cut wood again is about 8 deep in the to-do list layer. Just a couple of things we had to do around our house.

  • Cleared a fenceline around the back of our property. See the next two points. For this, I just HAD to buy a handy-dandy 40VMax DeWalt Chain saw. Nifty as hell. I'll see about posting a tool review soon.
  • Install a fence around the entire back yard (see the next point for the reason why this HAD to happen now)
  • Get a long-promised puppy for the boys
  • Get the major leak fixed on the first floor bathroom sink (leaking into the workshop below)
  • Get the major leak fixed on the second floor bathtub (leaking into the workshop below)
  • Get the dehumidifier installed (see the above two points, and note that my underground shop has cinderblock walls)
  • Figure out how to run a drain pipe from the dehumidifier so I don't have to empty 3 gallons of water from it three times a day
  • Install a new garage door opener in the garage

That's all stuff that isn't strictly woodworking related, although you can probably see that several of them had largely detrimental effects on woodworking if I hadn't gotten them taken care of.  Actually, to be brutally honest, if MY WIFE hadn't managed to take care of them by hiring people to handle it.

Still, I have managed a few things around the shop to get myself setup . . . at last.

First, there was the saga of the outfeed table. As you can see at right, my outfeed table has a very wide stance, and a very low shelf. The shelf, unfortunately was both screwed and *glued* in place. Our basement doors are not very wide. For the past four months, it's been trapped in our backyard shed until I could figure out how to get it into the basement shop.  Finally, I hauled it into the garage. The cutline on the left table leg is just visible in this shot. After sawing the table in two like a two-bit magician, I carried the top and bottom halves into the shop, and patched it together again.There it sat for another couple of weeks until I finally figured out what to do. What to do?  I brutally sawed the bottom of the legs and the shelf off from the top. I then hauled both pieced into the workshop, and spliced the legs together with plywood braces. You can see the cut line in the photo at left. 

Once I got the outfeed table into the shop, I finally had a large flat surface on which to work. Hence my recent workbench progress.

But I've also been doing other things to get my shop back in working order:

  • Installed eight fluorescent light fixtures. 
  • Got the bandsaw back on it's roller base
  • Mounted the tool cabinet on the wall, filled it with tools and hung up the little picture of the shaker chair for inspirationMounted the wall-mount tool cabinet (see at right)
  • Got many of the moving boxes out of the shop to free up floor space
  • Found the box with all of my hardware 
  • Found the box with all of my portable power tools
  • Put up a clock
  • Added a radio and a bluetooth speaker. Do not underestimigate the power of classic rock to get an aging Gen-Xer off his duff and into gear

So . . .lots accomplished in the last two months. Maybe I can finish a couple projects soon and maybe (gasp) start working on projects for the new house. I have some ideas for a new mudroom bench/coatrack, and possible a couple of Shaker tall cabinets for the bathrooms.