It’s the first week of May, and therefore it’s Woodworkers’ Safety Week. Many folks have some great posts regarding safety while working in the shop. I’ll take a slightly different approach and talk about safely getting into and out of the shop.
My shop is in the basement, so it involves going down stairs to get there (as well as the laundry area also in the basement). My house is old, and the stairs were no exception. After years of weakening from use, some damage at the foot caused by the occasional wetness that can occur after a good rain or snow melt (and who knows how much water before a sump pump was installed some time in history), being very steep, and no handrail, the stairs needed to go. (I think you’ll agree after looking at the pics below – I’ll let you guess which are “before” and “after”.)
So that’s my safety tidbit – have a safe way of actually entering, or exiting the shop!
I went and sprained my foot and ankle earlier this week, so figured I would actually post what I was able to wrap up last week – the shelving unit that goes above the air compressor.
One of key things for my basement is to try and utilize as much space as possible, and being in an old house (built in 1860), things are sometimes in an odd spot. As you can see in the picture, the column is holding up a beam above, and the space otherwise would be somewhat wasted. Luckily the air compressor fit nicely just behind it. The shelves above you actually saw in a previous post 1/2 done. The second unit is up on the right and is joined in the middle by a piece of MDF that sits in front of the column (the whole unit is made of MDF – being a novice, I figured it was cheap material good for shop use and in case I made a mistake with my router routing out the dados for the shelves). Then I installed a small strip of pegboard to the joining piece of MDF.
Today is the first day I’ve been able to hobble around mostly without the crutches… So hopefully, I’ll be back in the shop soon!
One thing I’ve always been bad at in the past is taking “before” shots before starting a project around the house. I figured now though, I would have a shop tour early on in this blog, and down the road as I hopefully update the shop, I could do another shop tour and see the difference between now and later.
One of the biggest challenges of my particular shop is that I have to be creative on where I place my tools. My house was built in 1860, and the basement has plenty of spots where you have to duck your head to avoid ductwork, pipes, etc.
What better way though to start a shop tour with a picture of my “May ‘The Schwarz’ Be With You” shirt!
This is one of the first things I built for the shop when we bought our house in 2002. As the family “IT Guy”, I wanted a bench to be able to open computers and work on them.
Just behind the computer bench is my floor drill press, with a bit of a mess in front of it.
Turning around 180 degrees from the drill press, you see my benchtop bandsaw, workbench and pegboard. On the portable stand to the right of the bench is my mitre saw.
To the right of the workbench and pegboard is the air compressor, with some shelves I am in the process of completing to store tools.
Turning back toward the bandsaw, are some shelves for tool storage as well as a radio with aux input setup for my iPod (gotta have tunes!).
Between the air compressor and the shelves leads to the second half of the basement where the “big tools” are… although that is just a jointer, contractor style table saw, and dust collector. This area has less of the ductwork, etc and therefore has more headroom.
Turning right from the jointer is the table saw and dust collector.
A view from the other end of the second half of the basement. The open area is where I plan to put a planer.
And turning slightly to the left, another shot of the dust collector and table saw.