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The pictures are poor, bear with a cheap camera.
The whole shop is almost 6000 sf and used to be a machine shop and is in Portland Oregon. We moved in September and immediately painted all the walls and ceilings white. What a difference! We also tore out two crappy offices at the front of the building to add about 350 ft2 to the main milling room. Other than that we basically just built cabinets and tables and hooked all our machines up and about 6 weeks after our start of our move, we made our first new dollar. It was a lot of work and took 3 people to get everything moved and up and running.
What should be the first photo is not is the storage room. All lumber comes into this room through the 14’x14’ sliding door off a 60 x 20 concrete parking pad off a paved alleyway. The previous company used to need to drive semis into this 1000 ft2 space so they have a 18’ ceiling as well. This room is a catch all right now used for automotive work, storage, this that and what not and is a fairly large waste of my lease money. I need to turn this space into something productive instead of a sawdust storage pit.
The first actual photo is of the true lumber room. Here we store between 500 and 1000 feet on a regular basis. On the left side of the planer, not seen, are wall racks floor to ceiling. In the center are more wall racks for material up to about 14-16’ in length. On the backside of the center racks, are standup racks with a walkway through the middle.
The planer is a 16” Central Machinery planer that earned its keep the first day we used it. On sale at $399 it will eat 1/8” full width hours a time. We use it for rough planing only. I wrote up a review of it but evidently it did not get posted to the review section. On the far side of the photo you see the plywood rack which will hold over a unit of ply. The back wall is the doors to the aforementioned storage room.
The main milling room is about 1000 ft2. At the center is a Makita 2040 15” planer flanked by a Grizzly 8” jointer. Behind that is an older Unisaw with a 52” Beismyer fence. Behind that is a small metal lathe. To the far left and not seen is a cobbled together wood lathe of 10x54 capacity. To the far right is a 4x8 vacuum bag veneer system. To the near right is a Star sliding table shaper with a Delta powerfeed.
Now if you do a 180, you will see the sanding room. Here we try to do almost all our sanding and waterbased finishing. We have a wall filter system of 6 filters and a 3x8 downdraft table with 3 filters. Both have separate motors and squirrel cages. We also have a 6x48 platen edge sander (far left) Knife edge sander (center) and oscilating spindle sander (not seen) in this room.
If you turn back counter clockwise 45% and take a few steps, you will walk into the main tool and assembly room. Seen, we have a 5hp table saw, with huge outfeed table and power feed, the 5hp 16/32 drum sander, drill press, 16” bandsaw and almost all our hand power tools. We have all our clamps on a mobile 8’ A-frame. There are two 4x8 work tables and a 4x8 assembly table on wheels that is usually stored in the storage room.
Not seen is the second 6” jointer and Multi-Router. Through the back sliding door is our hardware storage and a 16” Jet Mill-Drill. In this room also (about 2000 ft2, hard for one photo!) is my office and finished product storage.
Not seen but really the most important and truly the heart of my shop (because if you were to draw an X through the building, there it would be) is my dust collection system. This is my best gloat/purchase ever. It is a 4hp Tiawanese motor and blower hooked up to spiral pipe for 9 machines for $485 including all blast gates!. It did cost me another $500 or so for the 7 bag plenum I built plus other parts but what a score! This sits in a 10x8 room where the blower dumps the majority of the material into three 45gallon wheeled trashcans, and the fine dust ends up in the 5gallon paint buckets at the bottom of the seven 6’long felt filter tubes. Twice we have filled up all three cans AND half the tubes before noticing a decrease in performance. We keep the filter wall on in the sanding room and there is virtually no dust in the entire shop unless you are actively making it around yourself.
We build anything for a dollar basically. From small cigar boxes, to melamine bathroom cabinets, to Chippendale style bookcases, to knockoff modern style ply furniture, and our own original designs. We are in business and business is money. We love our job but this space is huge and so is the overhead, especially compared to the old space, it more than tripled! The biggest benefit is that it is now only 20 blocks from my house and the gas I will save a year will pay for one months rent alone.
Well, all be safe as you want to be, My site is listed in the members space I think
Originally posted 5 January 2002
wb 6 January 2002