My Humble Beginnings – The Wood Whisperer’s First Shop

Article - July 9, 2008

This week’s shop tour comes from a young science nerd living in Temecula, Ca in 2004. Yup, that would be ME. Thanks to Chris H. for reminding me that I still had pictures and a write up on the old ShopTours website (no longer exists). So I thought it would be fun if I posted the write up and showed you my humble beginnings. Let’s hop in my little time machine and hear from Marc, an aspiring woodworker from 2004. Enjoy!

I used to have my shop in just one bay of the 3 car garage, but since we never park in one of the other ones, I started eyeing the combination of two bays. So after getting the green light to switch the garage around, I finally have a nice functional space. I was able to make some built-in bench space that allowed me to rid myself of a few annoying stands. I gained a great deal of storage space to boot. And as a bonus, our workout area is separated enough that I won’t be tempted to start assembling large furniture in that space.

I added one more light, but I have a total of 4 units in the whole garage. Each one has 4 T8 bulbs. I think I need to add one more and I will be satisfied. I painted the whole garage several months ago and it is amazing what it does for the space. It really gives the light something nice to reflect off of. It has become a very inspirational space. Looking back from the drill press area, there’s the workbench and my thinking area for planning and drawing. I even do my homework in here. (I was taking courses for an MBA at the time- Future Marc)

Looking toward the front of the shop. You can see my jointer and the exercise equipment in the background. The Jet air cleaner does areally good job of keeping the air clean. But then again, most of my tools are connected to the dust collector or shop vac during use so very little hits the air to begin with. Overall I am very satisfied with its performance.

There is a closer view of my drill press, as well as my miter saw and my oscillating spindle sander. Also note the table saw top. What you can’t see in the pictures is the small pin that serves as the splitter. It is just as effective as the full size units and has proved its worth many times over (especially when I recently ripped a 6ft maple board that started to bow as I cut it. Without the pin the wood would have pinched the blade…yikes. For now, I forgo the guard until I can get the overarm style. Unfortunately there aren’t any aftermarket, easy on/off standard models that work on my saw.

I do feel lucky to have this much room. But as we all know, we always find a way to make it messy, so what it looks like here is no guarantee of what it will look like when the next project gets going. I almost always have the TV on while I am working, but rarely do I watch it. Its kind of annoying to others because I will watch the same movies like 3-4 times in a row just because I like the background noise. But usually I put in my DVD recordings of Woodworks and Norm. It is very handy when I need to copy a technique or idea.



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