Future location of Spinters #1: Part 2...

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Blog entry by Splinters posted 02-28-2008 06:15 PM 1720 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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The number of steps involved in taking on a project like this are many I know and I am trying to take one step at a time and not get to carried away….. I know it will be a fun, exciting process and intend to enjoy each and ever step along the way…....

It was suggested by a friend as a way to save money and time was to get the foundation in and ready to go…. then have an ole fashioned barn raising. Whereas gathering together family and friends we could have the structure roughed in a very short time. All I would have to do would be to provide the beer(for after) and a big BBQ for the energy. Sounds like a great way to spend time with family/friends and get the shop built a lot less expensive…Hmmmm perhaps I should start stocking the coolers and the freezers now…...

I called and talked to a local radiant heat/concrete specialist yesterday about the new shop project and asked for his input. He was very encouraging to work with and is putting together a spec sheet and prices of his recommendations. Now lets hope that it fits in with the budget.

After years of standing on a cold concrete floor or putting down mats or floor panels I begin to read about and hear of folks who had used radiant heat in garages and shops, not to mention their homes and absolutely loved it. It makes sense if I provide a heat source to a large concrete slab, it would create a very warm safe environment to work in. The positive results I read about convinced me that it was the way to go. During the installation you prepare the packed gravel surface and then lay down a special type of green board to direct the heat upward instead into the ground. Then of course you lay the normal rebar and stuff for a concrete floor, along with the radiant heat tubes.

I like the suggestions to also lay dust collection and wiring pipes in the floor before you pour the concrete. This is a great way to get power to the tablesaw and any other equipment, which will be in the center of the area and reduce trip hazards at the same time. My one thought about the dust collection is what happens if you plug it up. That could be fun to clear it out….

My plan is to use some sort of external heat…wood fired water boiler system with propane or electric backup. Living in the woods here provides easy access to lots of firewood, if you want to spend the energy to harvest it. A US forest service permit is available for $5 a cord, which if you have priced firewood lately is a great deal. Of course it means you have to go into the woods and cut and haul it back home and sweat a bit. Actually it is hard to beat a nice cool morning and heading to the woods for a load of firewood. Good exercise, fresh air, wildlife sightings, and quiet time. (until you fire up the chainsaw).

With the snow still piled way to high, I will have lots of time to plan and re-plan…..draw and re-draw….think and re-think…... these shop plans before I actually am able to start building, being as how it could be the 4th of July before the snow is completely gone.(SIGH!) So, I will have lots of time to incorporate lots of other folks ideas into the process. To adjust, discuss and ponder about all the different options….

To be a part of a community like this is awesome and I want to use it as much a resource as I possibility can. Now if I could just find a big pot of gold when I get to walk the land this would be a much easier process. Money…can’t live with it….can’t live with out it….good thing is can’t take it with you so might as well enjoy it while you can. Throughout all this it is great to have a wife who supports these dreams and helps to look for options for obtaining the dream!!

To be continued……..

-- Splinters - Living and Loving life in the Rockies - -

4 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 5268 days

#1 posted 02-28-2008 06:27 PM

Sounds great. One thing to make sure of is that you have good drainage around your building.

As for getting something stuck in the pipes under the slab. Well, it hasn’t happed to me since
I’ve been using it. If you do get a clog it will be at the elbows and not in the straight sections.
That would mean where it comes up out from the foundation where you have access. I wouldn’t
put any elbows under the slab. That would be asking for trouble.

If you looked that the picture I posted you will have noticed that my under slab runs consisted of
two “long elbows” connected by straight sections. I did it this way so that I could re-arrange the
pipes above ground to suit my ever changing needs.

If something were to get stuck in the middle I would just use a electrician’s snake to get past the clog
then tie something to it and drag it back.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 5102 days

#2 posted 02-28-2008 06:38 PM

Hi Splinters,

Putting DC piping under concrete gets it out of the way but as you stated plugging is a concern. I had a neighbor who did get his plugged but I am sure like Gary said he probably put an elbow in the run rather than at the ends. And, if memory serves me right I think he used 4” pipe. If he had used 6” and made a straight run I don’t think he would have had any problem.

But it looks like things are coming along.

Keep the posts coming.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Karson's profile


35279 posts in 5680 days

#3 posted 02-28-2008 07:30 PM

Great plans Splinter keep us in the thinking tube.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected] †

View jeffthewoodwacker's profile


603 posts in 5084 days

#4 posted 02-29-2008 12:23 AM

One other option for heating source is a shelled corn stove. They don’t require a vent and provide a good heat source.

-- Those that say it can't be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

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