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Jay Dreyer :: The Garage Workshop (Part I)

The Garage Workshop (Part I)

One of my first projects in the new house is to create a new workshop for myself and my tools. The “workbench” that was originally in the garage was beyond useless and was held up with a couple of cinder blocks and located directly beneath a make-shift storage shelf. This left me about 2 inches of clearance between my head and said shelf. Not a good environment for working with wood.

So, I went about trying to find plans for building my own workbench and storage system. After searching around the ‘net for a few days, I decided to go with Norm Abrams’ design for a garage workshop. His designs would give me a nice, big wall-mounted storage unit, as well as a workbench with cabinets, drawers, and a nice counter-top. I purchased the plans through his website and started planning.

The first thing I had to do was insulate the back wall of the garage. I debated about doing this or not, but DeAnne actually talked me into doing it. If I didn’t do it now, she reasoned, I’d never do it and would probably end up regretting it. As usual, she was correct so I picked up the insulation and installed it last weekend. (I should add here that my father-in-law is in town and has been a huge help with everything.) After installation of the insulation was completed, this is what the back of the garage looked like:

Insulation

Next up was the installation of the wall-paneling. I picked up a few sheets of some thin, exterior grade siding from Lowes. It’s not really thick enough to hold anything heavy, but it looks pretty good, was inexpensive, and fairly easy to work with. It took a while due to all of the holes we needed to cut out for the outlets, but thanks to the finish-nailer, we got it up without too many problems.

Wall Panels

Once the panels were up and trimmed out, it was time to paint. I ran into some trouble here because I picked up a can of “oops” paint from Lowes for $5. I thought I was pretty clever after purchasing the paint until I started painting. I didn’t prime the surface first so when I went to apply the paint, it just soaked right into the paneling. The can said it would cover 350-400 sq. ft., but it only ended up covering about 100 sq. ft. before I ran out. Not to worry, however, because Jack, my father-in-law, went in the basement and mixed together every available can of paint we had. I have no idea if this is a suggested practice or not, but it actually came out really nice.

Painted Wall

Now that the wall was insulated, paneled and painted, it was time to start building something. Well, not quite. First I had to make all of the cuts from the 6 sheets of 3/4” birch plywood I purchased. That took about five nights to do. Once that was finished, I actually got to build the wall cabinets. We assembled them Friday night and hung them up on Saturday. I’m really happy with them and the hinges we picked up from Rockler work and look great. Lot’s of room, too.

Wall Cabinet Wall Cabinet Open

Next up is the construction of the base cabinets and the workbench surface. I’m expecting that to be completed this week and I’ll post another article once it’s finished. I’ll leave you with a picture of my shop assistant and head-vacuum operator, Jack:

Shop Helper

 

| posted 07/24/2006 04:17 PM


Permanent link to this comment  Burke  on  07/31/2006 12:50 AM  said: 

WOW! Everything looks great. So when are you putting in the central vac system to all your tools and the humidity control? :)

BTW – I would request a uniform change for your assistant. Something in Maize and Blue would look much better. Although a Spartan shirt might be appropriate for someone doing manual labor.

Permanent link to this comment  Tim Mercer  on  08/24/2006 06:10 PM  said: 

Looking good Jay…and I do mean the workshop. I will e-mail you a picture of my newest project on the house. I know this belongs in the sports area, but how about those Tigers! Tell DeAnne, Jack and Lulu hi.

Tim


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