Circling Around: Chap 3 Prep!

Yes, it’s been a week since my last post . . . time flies.

We’ve still been getting a good bit of rain showers on and off over the past week. A good day and a half of rain actually didn’t matter at the end of last week since I killed a good 2 and a half days on getting my taxes sorted out and filed.

Although I have one large wall section and the final big door section yet to complete, both located in the front left corner of the shop (viewpoint from looking at shop from outside front), I’m also in a bit of tying-up-loose-ends phase on the shop prep.

For example, not only did I get the kiosk desktop installed, with edge trim sanded, but also installed a switched light as well. This was part of large effort to finish up the electrical in the workshop. The majority of that just entailed merely reinstalling the electrical lines I took down to finish the walls.

I finished replacing the circuit that starts at the front wall and ends at the back wall. Next to the 120V line (right plug beneath window) is the 240V circuit for the milling machine.
[Also note I cut the remaining white 1/4″ paneling I had on hand and mounted above the cabinets].

To tackle the remaining big section of wall I first need to move a big pile of 2x4s… that I stacked up after tearing down the temp walls I built to hold the roof up during my big beam install and center roof support post removal.

Although it results in a delay on getting the wall section completed, instead of messing around with the wood twice I will simply use all of it I can before moving the remainder of the pile. Hmmm, efficient or lazy?!

Part of the shop upgrade plan has always been a big worktable ala Chapter 3 of the Long-EZ build plans. So to kill the proverbial two birds with one stone I started the big table build from this pile of 2x4s.

To be even more la… er, efficient, I decided to use plans from a workshop table that I’m quite familiar with: my buddy Marco’s. Knowing that he documented and detailed his table build on his blog, I simply based this work table almost entirely off his design (Thanks Bro!).

Starting on the big workbench build, I’ll point out that a number of the 2x4s in my pile were actually double boards that I had nailed up and down the length of the boards for strength… again, during the big shop center beam install. Separating these paired-up boards would be quite the pain, so I used those first for the 6 work table legs since they needed doubled up 2x4s anyway.

Here’s the basic frame of the 12′ long shop work table. The bottom shelf is 34″ wide while the table top is 39″ wide.

Day 2 of the table build —after a trip to Lowe’s for materials— I cut and installed the lower shelf sheets of 7/16″ OSB.

The entire frame of the shelf was built from the 2x4s I had on hand in that pile, and all I needed from Lowe’s was the bottom shelf material and the table top material: 3/4″ particle board. I had planned on going with plywood for the top, but at twice the cost it just wasn’t worth it since particle board will more than do the job here.

I already had the 2x4s on hand for the beam project (which I had planned on re-using for this table project, specifically) so I didn’t count them in the cost of this table build, which was about $50 total. Add around $25 for the 2x4s for a true total cost.

It took me a while to determine the actual length, width and location of the table, but I have to say I’m really pleased with the outcome.

In addition, I thought I’d show you what I’m working on late at night before I hit the rack: this is the new version of my Milling Machine’s power drawbar. The blue box looking thing is the motor housing off the mill, and the light gray contraption is the drawbar assembly that I’ll build to mount the pneumatic wrench, which is in the middle hanging down from the top plate.

My next task will be to finish up insulating the wall and double doors on the front of the shop. Then build the hanging shelf over the double doors to finish up using as much wood from the 2×4 pile as possible before hauling the remainder out to under the carport.

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