Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Basement Shop Progress Pics 2010.12.12

I figured it had been a while since I posted images of the shop - at this point I guess the shop is really an ongoing effort - I'm not sure if I'll ever get it to the point where I'm totally satisfied. From the last group of images, I've put in the central pipe for the dust collector and started placing my workbenches - but it finally hit me that I've got too many tools, so many of my project tools will need to go - some I'll put on CraigsList while others I'll part out an put on eBay (or list on the Old Woodworking Tools org site as sale items).

This first image shows how I tied in the Grizzly Cyclone into the over-head duct system. I tried to minimize what was overhead and did so by running a main trunk line down the center of the room with "y"s leading to each side (one exception was a duct running along one end with drops to a long bench which I'll show below). There are also two floor standing drill presses shown, both 14" Deltas (the one on the left was probably from a school shop with "DRILL PRESS" stenciled on the side. The one on the right is a very old 1937 Delta model with split-phase motor and round cast iron stand - got that one for $15 (it's in an earlier post). They both run but that older model needs a tug on the belt - need to figure out that motor soon.

 Here's a shot of the duct work - note that to maximize space I've suspended my longer clamps from the ceiling using "J" hooks they sell at Home Depot - it's very effective. I added some additional "y"s for future expansion with covers mounted over them. The cover you see will go above the bench mounted on the wall to the left.

This is the main trunk looking towards the back of my shop - note the old turning tool display mounted on the door - I was given that during one of the GWA shop tours and thought it would be a cool way to display some of my older turning tools (they're old Buck, Walker Turner Driver Line and Delta - non-HSS).

Towards the other side the ducting runs next to my ambient dust collector - I got this brute during an Amazon sale for $130 - it has both a remote control and timer and works very well in clearing all the airborne dust - I can set the timer for 30 minutes and the dust is gone by the next time I come into the shop.

Now on to the "new" workbenches - I originally had planned to build a long bench along the far wall next to the dust collector. Last year I went to an estate sale in the neighborhood (a neighbor was relocating to Florida for a job) and got these two Craftsman all-metal workbench cabinets (no top) for $10 each - I wish I had taken a photo before I cleaned these up - they were basically a rusty heap from being stored in an unconditioned storage building outside. I treated the rust, sanded, then shot these with primer and rustoleum. I didn't spend too much time on them since they were going into the shop - I think they turned out looking nice (there is a little pitting on the lower drawers but you have to get in close to see them. Here's the left 8 drawer cabinet:

And here's the right 10 drawer cabinet:

I put a few chisels into the left to see how they would work out - all of these are users:

You can see some of the over-spray and the drawer glides - like I said previously I didn't spend much time doing these and just wanted the rust gone. I used some 1/4" nuts and bolts to mount the two cabinets together.

Next I had to figure out what to do with the top. I wanted to mount a radial arm saw in the middle but wanted a base for it, as well as some work space before elevating the ends to support stock. I was driving through the neighborhood and spotted some open cardboard boxes with wood sticking out on the curb - it ended up being two boxes of pre-finished maple flooring. The ends were slightly "dirty" and weathered - I believe they were exposed a bit to the elements and probably left-over. In any case, I'm glad the neighbor was throwing them out as I think they'll make a fine workbench. Not bad for free. You can see my Dewalt MBF on the table behind the stack - that's going in the middle of the workbench.

I spent some time getting the cabinets as level as possible - those are cedar shakes custom cut to be hidden yet provide the leveling I needed for the benches. I marked the floor in case I needed to move the unit (which I probably will need to in order to attach the top).

So I next needed to figure out the top. I decided to cut tongues along each cut end so they will fit into a groove in a skirt - the skirt will be made of maple and would attach to a sub-frame made of 1x material - I wanted to get the base as low as possible so it's just slightly larger than the cabinets. There are some holes in the top of the cabinet that are used to attach a top. This is the sub-frame with a piece of maple flooring to illustrate the overall idea. Each board will extend from back to front.

I built the sub-frame using pocket screws - it's amazing how well those guys work - each joint is also glued with Titebond 1:

Since I wanted to be able to take everything apart if needed, I had to devise an assembly/disassembly plan. Bolts would come up through the cabinet and into nuts/washers in the sub-frame. The top will be one unit held together with the skirt, then screws would be used from the skirt to attach to the edges of the sub-frame. To pull this off, the sub-frame needed to have counter-sunk holes. I did these using a forstner bit in a hand-drill. Note, to start I first marked the holes using the actual hole placement from the cabinets then drilled for the bolts with the frame upside-down - that way they would align from the bottom. I next flipped over the sub-frame right-side up and used a spade bit to start the counter-sunk hole (if you've ever tried to hand-hold a forstner you'll know why I did that first) - once the hole was started I switched to the forstner and drilled down to a depth that would allow the bolt to clear and still have room for a washer and nut. Here's what that looked like.

I'll take additional shots when I finish the top - the weather was nice this fall so I got back on my Unisaw restoration, media blasting parts and getting primer, and in some cases some finished coat on them. More pics soon.

-- John

1 comment:

Woodworking Mags said...

inspiring project, john. good luck.