Workshop Overhaul #3: The shop is really a mess right now.

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Blog entry by docholladay posted 07-18-2011 06:05 AM 1797 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Wood Shop Overhaul Began today. Part 3 of Workshop Overhaul series Part 4: There is light at the end of the tunnel. »

Well it is an understatement to say that my shop is a mess right now. I have so much stuff crammed in this 24X12 space that it is really difficult to work around all of the stuff that I have in there. I basically move everything out of one spot so I can work on that spot. Then I clear one area to make another place to work. This is proving challenging to do the electrical because a circuit could run from one end of a wall to the other end. Anyway, right now, I am installing my lighting. I ran part of the circuit tonight and hope to finish it tomorrow night. Having the lighting installed and working will help a lot since half of my struggle is setting up temporary lighting in order to see what I am doing. Also, I spend as much stuff moving stuff around as I do working on anything. I will be glad to get this project finished so I can get back to some fun stuff like restoring old tools or doing some lathe turning. What I am most looking forward to is that, assuming I have calculated correctly, I will be able to get to all of my most commonly used machines (table saw, band saw, chop saw, lathe, drill press, jointer & planer) without having to move anything to get at them. I expect it will take me two or three more weekends to get this job finished.


-- Hey, woodworking ain't brain surgery. Just do something and keep trying till you get it. Doc

9 comments so far

View GaryD's profile


623 posts in 3754 days

#1 posted 07-18-2011 02:44 PM

Been there done that!!!!!!!!! Still have the mess but gaining on it

-- Gary, Little River,SC I've Learned that the Lord didn't do it all in one day and neither can I

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 4058 days

#2 posted 07-18-2011 03:23 PM

Shop space can fill up fast.

View Blakep's profile


232 posts in 3187 days

#3 posted 07-18-2011 07:16 PM

I know what you mean except mine is a mess and its up and running ha. I have a 15’ by 20’ and it fills up so fast. I have been trying to get as many items as I can finished to go in our booth next saturday. I am litteraly standing on a pile of cut offs everytime I use my table saw right now. I long for the day that I have about a 40’ by 40’ shop and the first thing going in it is a paint room. I try to build everything and then finish it all at once. The only problem is once I get a good batch of stuff build and start putting a finish on it then I am shut down until it dries. That’s why I wish I had a seperate room for nothing but finishing so I could keep working on other projects while it dried. Hopefully I will be able to take the time to clean up sunday afternoon before I start on the next batch of projects because right now I would be embarassed for someone to come in my shop.

View helluvawreck's profile


32086 posts in 3251 days

#4 posted 07-18-2011 07:22 PM

Just hang in there, Doc, because I know that you are a thoughtful and determined man and that you have put a lot of thought into this. Because of that I know that it will all turn out great and you will wonder why you just didn’t do it sooner.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 3403 days

#5 posted 07-18-2011 08:15 PM

I know exactly what you are going through, I just finished building an addition to double the size of my 12’ x 20’ shop and it is now a 24’ wide by 20’ deep shop with a nifty 3’ high loft. Check it out on my latest blog. I love the new addition cause it gives me room to work now and is much easier to keep clean too. Good luck with yours!

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View helluvawreck's profile


32086 posts in 3251 days

#6 posted 07-18-2011 08:19 PM

Bearpie, I envy both you and Doc. I need a storage shed in the worst way for my lumber. I have no where at all to store lumber and boy could my whole set up use a makeover. Keep up the good work, Doc.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View docholladay's profile


1287 posts in 3444 days

#7 posted 07-18-2011 08:31 PM

Bearpie, I wilsh I had the luxury of expanding my shop space. My shop is a basement garage shop, so without expanding the entire house, that really is not possible. My dream is one day to have a detached shop building in the 30X30 range, but for now, I have to make due with the space that I have. When the kids grow up and move out, I may have the option of taking over the rest of the basement – if my wife doesn’t get to it first. I agree that a finishing room would be great to have. Not only could you apply a finish and then go work on something else, but you can have a dust free room so you don’t have to worry about airborne dust particles settling on that nice final coat of finish that you just applied to your project. Also, you just about have to have a dedicated finishing space if you want to use spray finishes.

Helluvawreck. I know what you mean about lumber storage. I have considered building a shed in the back yard for this purpose. If I were to do that, I would also make it so that I could move and store the kids bicycles and a few other non-shop items that unfortunately also live in my shop space. Maybe that will be next after this makeover.


-- Hey, woodworking ain't brain surgery. Just do something and keep trying till you get it. Doc

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 3688 days

#8 posted 07-18-2011 10:34 PM

hey there doc, glad to see your working on the shop and getting it how you want it…i know it can be extremely frustrating to try and work in a mess, but you will get there..and will stand back with a smile and a nice cold drink and say…yea…now there is my shop…....i know i felt that way when i first built mine…im in a big project right now myself…and thing are a bit messy..but that is what a shop is and messes..and with it being a stand along shop , i can have a mess and walk out at night and not have to worry … glad to see your doing this and making progress…....good luck my friend..and i want to thank you again for your kind and generous gift…ive used the plane a few times now and love it…ive got it on a shelf that is right above where my work bench know you have been in my shop…so it kinda like my trophy on display..right above that i have the saws you gave me also… still makes me smile when i use that saw…i love the walnut handle…so classy…well take care…remember you can stop by whenever you want and get some of the heart pine i promised…so dont forget….bob

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View canadianchips's profile


2626 posts in 3382 days

#9 posted 07-19-2011 05:02 AM

I hear you. I just spent last 3 days cleaning and re-organizing my tiny 14×22 ft workspace. I talked my wife into moving an armoir that we used for cloths seldom worn to another location, this freed up 8 sq. ft. more space for my tools. (Doesn’t sound like much but it made a BIG difference.) I also put a 6×9 breeze way roof over the side door, I can now do my staining, sanding outside (depending on weather) Just make do with what I have. BEST of Luck with yours !

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

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