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Shop Re-org Chapter 7

Finally, a weekend of real progress. After finding sewer and drain line in white, I got down to plumbing in the duct work. I’m using 6″ ductwork with 4″ wyes on three of the four drops. (The fourth is a 6″ wye.) The toughest part was getting the duct from the DC down to the sill where the main line will run. I puzzled over how to do this with the fewest turns, then realized that simply by turning the DC 90°, I could get the angle I needed:

DC hookup

DC hookup

This is the first wye. I installed another 4x4x4″ wye below it to branch off to the disc/belt sander and to the bandsaw. Read more

Shop Reorg, Chapter 6, part 2, verse 1…

I had a chance to snap some photos tonight to show some of the progress for those that are following along (Hi Mom).

Here’s the DC in place on top of the cabinet. Disc/belt sander fits where I originally had the drill press. Should have no trouble collecting all the sanding dust!

DC in place on cabinet

DC in place on cabinet

Here’s a “before” shot of the clamp rack that I’ll be rebuilding. Similar construction, just longer with slots that are closer together so I can pack more clamps in the same area. Read more

Shop reorg, Chapter 6

In my last post about this, I said I knew myself well enough to know that I’d be moving machinery around several times before I was done. How true.

As shown in Chapter 5, there wasn’t enough room for the drill press next to the DC cabinet. So I moved the drill press back to its original position. Then I decided to swap it and my bench so that all my machinery would back up to (or at least be within reach of) the main DC trunk. That worked great… until I wanted to get into the attic storage above the garage. The corner of the bench sits right where the pull-down ladder to the attic needs to rest. So the bench and DP were switched once again. The planer was moved once. The miter saw was drug around to a couple of locations, then ended back in the spot where it’s always been. But now at least I think I know where everything is supposed to go.

Getting things positioned is a big step, but I feel like I lost a whole weekend that I hoped would be spent plumbing the DC line. Not that I had the ductwork to work with anyway. I’ve decided on PVC instead of metal ducting because the run will be about 8″ above the floor. PVC won’t get crushed when I lean a piece of plywood or something against the wall.

I found all the wye’s and fittings I need at the local big box store. The problem came when I drove into the lumberyard to pick up the pipe. It was a putrid looking green. Not a problem if you’re using it as sewer pipe and intend to bury it in the ground, but it would look like… well, sewage against my white walls. I tried five other stores but couldn’t find it in white. Plumbers and plumbing supply houses aren’t open weekends, so I’ll try to track down white pipe this week.

Once the trunk and branches are plumbed in, I can start connecting machines. THEN I can start on yet another shop cabinet for general storage, and a new clamp rack. Maybe someday I’ll get back to building something that’s on the wife’s list!

Craig Ruegsegger

Shop Reorg, Chapter 5

The cabinet is complete and in place! Here it is, tucked into its corner. I’ve moved the drill press into its new home next to the cabinet. (The DP is hidden behind the band saw.)

DC cabinet in place

DC cabinet in place

But I discovered a problem. I didn’t allow much room for pieces to extend off the drill press table, as you can see here:

DC cabinet in place

DC cabinet in place

So I had to revisit my floorplan model and I think I have a revised setup. It involves the placements of the bandsaw, belt/disc sander and drill press. I know myself well enough to know that I’ll be moving those three more than once until I get a workable solution.

Next up is to get pipe, wyes, blast gates and flex hose.

Craig Ruegsegger

Shop Reorg, Chapter 4

This weekend was gorgeous! I should have been out on the bike exploring backroads, and searching for great pie shops, but with $4 gas and a shop in the condition mine is in, it wasn’t hard to spend time working on my cabinet.

I got a lot done. A third old cabinet was sold, my daughter unloaded some of her old toys that were taking up room (thank goodness for  Craigslist. I’m not affiliated, but certainly a satisfied user!) and that made it easier to move around the shop/garage. Here’s the cabinet with drawers installed:

Drawers, no fronts

Drawers, no fronts

Read more

Shop Reorg, Chapter 3

It was a productive week for the shop re-org. The two old cabinets were sold. $15 each, so I got all but $5 of my original investment back. Not bad. Getting those out of the way helped give me a bit of breathing room. During the weekend, I got all 8 drawers built and installed. The drawers have a groove down each side that fits over hardwood runners in the cabinet. It took a bit of planing of the runners to get a good sliding fit, but after sanding and waxing, they glide like silk.

Now all I need to do is make the false drawer fronts and the doors, then I can paint the cabinet and move it into place.

I still want to make sliding trays to go behind the doors. Because the cabinet is so deep, they’ll be necessary so I don’t have to pull out everything in the front of the cabinet to get to what I need, which will inevitably be at the rear. The trays can be built after the cabinet is in place.

I know, this post would be better with pics! Frankly, the shop was such a pit, that I was embarrassed to take any. But now that the drawers are in the cabinet, I’ll try to snap a couple tonight to post later.

Craig Ruegsegger

Shop Reorg – The cause, the solution

Oh man, do I want this cabinet built and done with. My shop looks like it’s been turned upside down and shaken.

To ready the old cabinets for sale, I had to empty the contents into boxes. Those boxes are piled on and around my second bench. The cabinets then went to the front of the garage, leaving j-u-s-t enough outfeed space at the jointer. The motorcycle had to be moved over to within inches from the sheet goods rack. And I only sold one of the old cabinets, so the larger of the two still sits in the garage. The carcase of the new cabinet lies on its back in the middle of the floor by the main bench. There’s j-u-s-t enough room for me to squeeze around it. And that’s only possible because I’m not a very big guy. The bench is piled with tools and hardware. The wing of the table saw is piled with drawer parts. And I still have to step over that #!*% DC duct a hundred times a day!

I’m able to work and find what I need, but shimmying sideways around the cabinet carcase is getting old. And that cabinet is the key to getting everything reorganized. Odd isn’t it? The cause of the problem is also the solution.

Craig Ruegsegger

One thing leads to another

I’ve acquired a new dust collector, a 1 1/2hp Jet. It’s just enough bigger than my old machine, footprint-wise, that I need to do some rearranging of the shop so I’m not tripping over the hose. So I measured all the tools, cabinets and my bench, made scale drawings of them and my shop and then proceeded to start arranging things on paper. Much easier than pushing machines around. It’s also something you have to really think about. One factor I neglected to consider initially was room for me! So I made an additional scale of about 30″ square and called it “My Space”. Then after getting machines in the positions I thought would work, I moved “My Space” around to see if I could fit between the machines and had enough room to work. I also made a scale of a 4′x8′ sheet so I could test whether I’d have enough room to move sheet goods.

I think I’ve got the layout decided. And like so many projects, before you can do what you originally wanted (relocate the DC) there are about 10 other things that have to be done first. I’ll get some “before” shots of the shop and post them so you can follow along as I go through this. The big picture view is I’ll be getting rid of at least one, possibly two floor-standing cabinets. To find a home for the items in those cabinets, the DC will rest on a 40″-high cabinet with doors and drawers. Then I’ll rout ducting along one long wall (about 25′) and branch off for each of the machines.
Pics to come to help you get your bearings.
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