Plans for the Heavy Shop

It’s time to admit it: we have a small house.  When we bought it, 1800 square feet (167 m²) felt like a palace.  Indeed, we turned down larger homes because we felt we would rattle around in them.  Now that this one is filled with two kids and a dog, there is little hope of rattling around.

So it should be no surprise that shoehorning a space for machine tools and paint booth into the last alcove of the basement requires a little ingenuity.  The plan is, however, starting to come together.

It all hinges on a second floor that drops down from recesses in the back of the bathroom wall.  This enables a fold-down paint booth to be mounted five feet above the base floor, freeing the rest of an L-shaped counter for machine tools.

I turned to to sketch the ideas.  Back when I had a Windows machine I liked SketchUp for its expressive gestural language (plus the fact that it was free!). This was my first project with the online version since testing it when it first came out. I was shocked to find that there doesn’t appear to be any way to create groups or components, without which SketchUp is a toy.  I did, however, enjoy the easy access to a component library, where I found my lathe and decent representations for my drill press and vice.

Well, that’s the hard bit done.  Now to tease it out of the computer and into real life!



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