Fold-up table and ...

  • Advertise with us
Project by JohnnyStrawberry posted 04-17-2014 08:03 AM 3733 views 5 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

...and a whole new workshop!
Well, not entirely new but moving from a 19’x16’ shop to a 16’x9’ small single car garage has had some impact on the layout… :-D
Hmm where to start… I’d been fed up with the management of the old place. The la(te)st issue came (Long story short I had to pay more than twice as much for the shop heating than we pay for our home heating… on top of that I was freezing till November in the shop… :[email protected] I’m getting hot in here while I’m typing this…) and I immediately gave up that place without having known where to go that time (winter).
I always felt that the former shop was a little oversize for my needs. (Not sure how many of us have ever felt that way. LOL) So I looked more into buying a nearby single car garage. Surprisingly, selection was pretty small. Moving day was coming and I could only find one garage half mile away from home and without electricity… wow, that’s not so shiny… but that was all. Bought. Well, looking back, it was better this way because I could have the garage wired with 3 phases. (My jointer/planer needs 3P.)
BTW, I covered’em up. It can only be opened from inside of the shop. The box hangs on hooks and a threaded rod holds it firmly. I just love this solution. It works fantastic! :-)

You can click on the photos to enlarge them. (Scroll click recommended.)
So, back inside.
I was the only one who wasn’t concerned about the size of the new place… I know what I need. This small single car garage is just perfect for me.(!) Just look at this layout.

You can see how essential the fold-up table is for my small single car garage… It hosts the drill press and mimics the jointer/planer (underneath) in its particular behavior of holding ALL of my tools in use at a time… But having a much larger surface area to litter on… When I want to use the jointer I have to put away the accumulated piles of tools – it’s always been like this, so no change here. :-D

Having enough space in a small garage is one thing. Security is something completely different… Well, I must say that the latter needed much more elaborate thinking. Gotta be little smarter than thieves… Being that said I’ll share only some of the security elements…
I built a second inside door out of 1/8” (and some 1/4”) thickness steel parts throughout. I know it’s overkill but I enjoyed the build so much. :-) Insulated also.

And I built an insulated ceiling also out of steel.

Having poured some concrete in the biggest canyons in the concrete floor meant an uncomfortable amount of water to get rid of… Besides, insulation does prevent proper ventilation so RH climbed pretty high (80%). So I had to install a serious dehumidifier. Works great! It’s a must have IMHO.

And I did have enough steel to make a wall mounted lumber rack in the far upper corner of the shop.

Although it’s steel too but the metal frame of the shelves came with the garage. I put some 1/2” ply shelves in it. And I reclaimed some assorted sheet stuff for the lower shelves. HUGE storage area. How sweet… :-)) No need for additional wall mounted storage at all. Yet. LOL

Noticed the lighting? ;-) My favorite experiment in the new shop. :-) Having absolutely no sunlight in the shop, I decided to go for the most naturalistic (spectrum) artificial option; light bulbs. Halogen ones to save some energy. (3×100W+140W…) They’ve been great at heating the shop as well… Not sure how much I’ll like that in high summer… LOL
So what are these lighting crixtures? The main concept is having focusable, movable, separately operable light sources. These are what I know I need. It has a downside though… It’ll make sanding a more tedious process; I think you know what I mean. LOL
Focus is set by machine screws in the middle beam and/or tightening/loosening the wires on the ends that bends the aluminium sheet. I can hook them anywhere on the ceiling.
Having three phases and three fixtures allowed that each fixture has its own phase which means a much safer operation than relying on one phase only.

So, back to the fold-up table… No, the legs are not sticking out like on the photos; I was just being lazy when I took the photo… The legs have hinges in the back and they have a 1/2” beech ply (scraps) reinforcement and the table top is screwed to the beam on the wall when the table is used.
And another thing about the fold-up table. It’s co-level with the workstation. That means I can easily handle even full sheet goods as well. Or using the crosscut sled even on up to 6.5’ long boards(!).
Thank you for reading along,

-- What are those few hours of mine compared to those decades Mother Nature has put in it!

17 comments so far

View AnonymousRequest's profile


861 posts in 2889 days

#1 posted 04-17-2014 08:35 AM

You have a very well thought out shop. Great idea for your table. I like the security door, shelving and the lighting is something I’ve never seen before. Looks great to me!

View woodchuckerNJ's profile


1575 posts in 2974 days

#2 posted 04-17-2014 09:15 AM

Good luck in your new shop… you say the lighting is all you need for heat?

Must not be too cold ..
The ceiling and door look pretty well beefed up.. Should take an army to penetrate.

Looks like it will allow you to hang things too while they are drying.
Why do the lights need to be on different phases? Is there an advantage?
Here in the states residential is usually one phase so we are always on one phase.

-- Jeff NJ

View JohnnyStrawberry's profile


246 posts in 3658 days

#3 posted 04-17-2014 10:24 AM

Thank you guys.
WOW Jeff [NJ], you have a wonderfully equipped and fantastically organized workshop!
No, it wasn’t enough in February… I did use a 2kW heater then. Haven’t used it since.
Yes, the ceiling has a great hanging-stuff-potential. =)
Only safety advantage. And mostly due to my situation. This garage is part of a series of attached garages. And we do have main breaker for each phase somewhere for the garages (several dozen!). If someone or something shoots one or two of the breakers I won’t stay without lighting. It is especially practical when I’m using rather harmful power tools, e.g. table saw…

-- What are those few hours of mine compared to those decades Mother Nature has put in it!

View Ivan's profile


17143 posts in 4207 days

#4 posted 04-17-2014 11:39 AM

Nice idea with planner and table!

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Kaleb the Swede's profile

Kaleb the Swede

1987 posts in 3309 days

#5 posted 04-17-2014 12:57 PM

Nice job Johnny. Looks very well thought out and executed. You really have a good work space now too. You would have more storage area if you shipped that Hammer combo machine to me. I would do that for you as a friend. One of my dream machines. Seriously though, fine work

-- Just trying to build something beautiful

View JohnnyStrawberry's profile


246 posts in 3658 days

#6 posted 04-17-2014 01:51 PM

Thanks guys.
How ya’ll doing Kaleb? Sleeping enough recently? ;-)
Allright buddy, when I get this one I’ll send my Hammer to you. ;-)

-- What are those few hours of mine compared to those decades Mother Nature has put in it!

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4206 days

#7 posted 04-17-2014 01:56 PM

That’s going to be a nice workspace when you get through with it.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View DocSavage45's profile


9071 posts in 4182 days

#8 posted 04-17-2014 04:31 PM

Music Please! Drum Roll! TA,Ta,Ta…..TAAAAAA!


Lookin good! Hope you do well with the humidity issue, air flow etc. Would suggest some type of air exchange if you’re going to spend a lot of time there. But I’m sure that’s been thought about. Even with low humidity I’ve had some rust accumulation on my machines. I actually have two humidifiers running as it is really too dry.

I’ve put in a lot of overhead lighting and I have a large window for my old ac unit, and I miss what I can see with direct sun light!

You probably know this but you can buy a water based sealer for the concrete to reduce the moisture that can come through the concrete.

Are you going to paint? LOL!

Congratulations, your way ahead of me. LOL!


Oh yeah, Floor looks good!

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View pintodeluxe's profile


6520 posts in 4153 days

#9 posted 04-17-2014 04:35 PM

Nice space saving idea.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View mloy365's profile


448 posts in 4470 days

#10 posted 04-17-2014 05:25 PM

That is a very nice use of space. You sure came up with some great ideas!

-- Mike - Northern Upper Michigan

View BentheViking's profile


1782 posts in 3904 days

#11 posted 04-18-2014 12:40 AM

great use of space

-- It's made of wood. Real sturdy.--Chubbs Peterson

View Kaleb the Swede's profile

Kaleb the Swede

1987 posts in 3309 days

#12 posted 04-18-2014 01:15 AM

Johnny we are getting some sleep, thanks for asking. I imagine you guys are pretty close. It’s amazing being a father, never understood that until now (I used to look at people funny for the that remark)

-- Just trying to build something beautiful

View JohnnyStrawberry's profile


246 posts in 3658 days

#13 posted 04-18-2014 07:25 AM

Thanks again.
Still quite a few things to do. For example I made a rack for the dehumidifier yesterday. Turned out great.

When I’m in the shop the dehum is switched off and I do open the insulation layer on the ceiling. This helps a lot on ventilation but then RH climbs back around 65%. (It only helps getting rid of the dust.) So for when I’m not in the shop I close the ceiling and switch on the dehum. It’s set to 40% RH. That is required for furniture grade wood.

LOL, Tom, no, I won’t paint… Even though my wife has asked that several times seriously… Ok, ok, it’d be nice but it has very low priority.
Getting my shop organized has the highest priority now. I thought up a system for DOING that. I see that ALL of my stuff in the shop can be categorized into three categories: tools, jigs, scraps. We’ll see that tonight.
We have two months to go. :-) I’d like to have a complete shop, an armoire and a crib (...), and some shelves (for the book piles in our home) built until then.

-- What are those few hours of mine compared to those decades Mother Nature has put in it!

View DocSavage45's profile


9071 posts in 4182 days

#14 posted 04-18-2014 03:45 PM


You are ambitious! I have two dehumidifiers running year round in my basement, Sandstone walls on a 140 year old building. One has a hose to a drain, the other has a container that has to be removed. I’m wondering about yours?

My concern was for improving the lighting in the shop to reduce eye fatigue. Ya! it also makes the place feel better. LOL! I’m glad I painted when I built it.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 4414 days

#15 posted 04-18-2014 09:29 PM

Do you realize you have the status of being the 100,000th project listed on this site? That, in itself, is significant.

Your posting is, indeed, worthy of the status of 100,000th project.

That, plus $1.00 plus tax, will entitle you to a cup of coffee at McDonalds.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

showing 1 through 15 of 17 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics