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Blog series by Matt updated 05-01-2016 01:33 AM 15 parts 17321 reads 15 comments total

Part 1: Conception

03-15-2016 11:01 PM by Matt | 0 comments »

So, I have been working for years out of my garage and whenever I want to do something “real” I run into the problem I don’t have anything “set up”. Nothing has a place. There is no workflow. During my latest project (I’m building a view camera and a pinhole camera) I became so frustrate I stopped and decided to take over our small garage bay that was serving as our shed. I had it with working without organization and without dust collection. So, I...

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Part 2: Paint on the walls

03-18-2016 12:15 AM by Matt | 0 comments »

Got a coat of paint on the walls! Lighting purchased and ready to install.

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Part 3: What to do about un-even concrete floor? Dust collection and electricity

03-19-2016 01:36 AM by Matt | 4 comments »

Hi all, Today was kind of a big day. At least, I spent a lot of money… I used a 20% off coupon on a 2hp dc unit from HF and added an accessory kit to get me going. I also grabbed a couple of clamps while I was there just for good measure. That’s how the day started. It ended with spending about $200 at HD picking up electrical supplies (on top of the $150 I already spent on electrical and lighting – don’t tell my wife). I’m going to add 3 new circuits ...

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03-20-2016 10:24 PM by Matt | 0 comments »

Today I got all the electrical installed and lights put up. It’s nice and bright now, and there are 3 new circuits for the dust collector and tools. Only drew a little blood in the process. I moved the table saw in just to see it there… you may notice the pile of tools on the TS. That is what kicked me into gear to get the shop built… I couldn’t take working like that anymore. Also, note the newly assembled HF Dust Collector in the back of the shop. That won...

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Part 5: Added a bandsaw today!

03-22-2016 04:12 AM by Matt | 0 comments »

Sorry, no pics yet… BUT! I picked up a 12” bandsaw today! So happy about this! I’ve got some QSWO waiting to be resawn for a box project. It is an older Craftsman model. Not the best, but it has a decent motor at 1-1/3 HP. It took a little time to get tuned up, but not too bad. It does need some new thrust bearings, which I found on EBAY (no longer made). The existing ones are solidly bound up. The tires on it are pretty heavily coated in saw dust and pitch....

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Part 6: Pics of the bandsaw and shop

03-22-2016 12:50 PM by Matt | 0 comments »

View into the shop. You can see the bandsaw past the table saw: Bandsaw tires are covered in wood residue. Need to clean those up: First cut – does look promising…. Middle cut is tuned up. Nice and straight!

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Part 7: All day in the shop! Slat Wall Tool Boards

03-26-2016 10:55 PM by Matt | 2 comments »

This whole “I’m building a workshop and I’m building it NOW!” thing came out of starting a project (to build a 4×5 view camera) and getting VERY frustrated at not being able to locate my tools. Nothing has a place where it belongs. Nothing is organized. Well, that’s about to change! Today I built two tool boards. One 3’x8’ which is located where the workbench will go once it is built. The second is a smaller 3’x4’ tool board...

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Part 8: just a few do-dads... and maybe a new jointer?

03-28-2016 02:41 AM by Matt | 0 comments »

Not much shop time today with Easter services and visiting with friends. But I made a few tool holders for the wall. pics inside. Also, there are two Delta 6” jointers on CL. I think one is coming home with me tomorrow…

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Part 9: New Jointer

03-29-2016 03:36 AM by Matt | 3 comments »

I picked up a jointer today. A benchtop 6” Porter Cable ( For the price ($250 new), I couldn’t not. I know it is not fully capable, but when I considered installing a full size 48” jointer in my small shop… it just didn’t make sense. Maybe another day I will pick up a used full size jointer, but for now this will do. On another note, we were at a friends house Sunday a...

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Part 10: Workbench is taking shape

04-03-2016 03:19 AM by Matt | 0 comments »

Hi all, I’ve been working on my shop and workbench a bit more. The leg assemblies are coming along. I started the bench a long time ago. The design is a little weird with constructed through tenons. If I knew then what I know now I would have done it differently, but it’s not terrible. I decided to bolt through for a little extra hold. Lumber is 2×6 construction pine re-milled to flatten.

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Part 11: Workbench taking shape, but need some advice...

04-04-2016 02:57 AM by Matt | 1 comment »

Things are progressing! I’m excited to see something bench shaped in my developing shop! I decided to top it with 3 layers of 3/4 plywood topped with a 1/4” of hardboard. I also want to band the edge with 1-1/2” x 4” hardwood banding (probably red oak or maybe meranti as my local yard has lots of it). I’ve got this old vice that I picked up super cheap. It needs a bit of clean up and a coat of paint, but it’s totally functional. The bench, not reall...

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Part 12: More Bench coming together!

04-09-2016 02:18 AM by Matt | 2 comments »

The workbench is really starting to take shape. I bolted up the leg assembly and dropped the top temporarily on top. Then I notched the bench for the vice. The vice was a little ugly, so I hit with a bit of paint. I’ll put a couple of more coats on, but it already looks better. I need to get nice hardwood dowel to replace the handle that’s in it and then we’ll be in business. Tomorrow I will hit the lumber yard. The primary goal is to get lumber for a couple of scre...

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Part 13: Having a vice can be a virtue - lovin' it!

04-09-2016 11:52 PM by Matt | 0 comments »

I’m really happy with how this is turning out! All sanded, wiped with mineral spirits and ready for some finish! (Oh, and I need to find some 3/8” walnut for plugs to confer the screw holes)

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Part 14: Video Tour, about half done...

04-18-2016 02:51 AM by Matt | 2 comments »

Here’s a short video tour of the shop. It’s coming along nicely. It’s a bit of a mess at the moment.. shavings everywhere. Really should have swept before shooting the video. I just tuned up my ebay Stanley#5… hence the pile of shavings on the bench. View on YouTube What this video reveals…1) I need lumber storage.2) Getting the planer and jointer need a home.3) I need to sweep…

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Part 15: Ordered materials for a sharpening station

05-01-2016 01:33 AM by Matt | 1 comment »

I finally shelled out for some proper sharpening stones. I went with the 8” dmt solid surface stones and purchased a set from ( I have to say it killed me to spend more on sharpening stones than on any single handtool, but I know I need them. I also ordered some leather for a strop. I’m haven’t decided how to set up the sharpening station. I want to get more into carv...

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