Farmkid ingenuity

Dave's shop makes good use of existing nuances combined with some ingenuity gained from growing up on a farm. For example, he added storm-cellar doors, like those familiar to viewers of The Wizard of'Oz. to provide a wide entrance to bring

LEFT: Dave typically uses glassfront cabinets to store hardware, supplies, sandpaper, and miscellaneous stuff. "With glass," he says, "1 don't have to think which cabinets have what stuff in them. I can see my hardware and know just where everything is. Also, they keep dust out." He purposefully positioned the glass-front cabinets (identified as "hardware storage" on the floor plan, opposite) to keep clear of swinging lumber.

Behind the double doors at left is Dave's finishing room (shown open, below). The room is sealed off and the air is filtered so Dave can let one project dry without fear of dust settling onto the finish while he works in the main shop. "In the shop in my last house, I had to shut down everything when I was ready to finish a piece. With this house, I had the luxury of enough space to set off a finishing room." Recessed dedicated can lighting (not shown) in the ceiling allows Dave to provide just the right amount of illumination to make sure that a finish looks good.

Dave also painted the walls, ceiling, and joists the whitest white he could find. "I wouldn't have enjoyed going down ihere if it was dark," he says. "The brightness really changed the atmosphere. I even painted all my cabinets white, so everything has total reflection."

With abundant fluorescent lighting fixtures, Dave gets a good look at everything. He added can lights above each machine to concentrate the illumination where he needs it.

Dave planned everything in the shop as carefully as he did the lights. He laid it all out with cardboard, then made scale drawings with cutouts to represent the machines. When he got it all spec'd, il was time to sit down with a contractor. "He had the idea that we could put in a concrete floor and install ductwork for a dust-collection system right under the concrete," Dave recalls.

This was eminently practical because, typical for a basement in ranch-style homes of that era, she ceiling is low. The innovation saved Dave from surrendering overhead space to ductwork. "Dust collection is paramount if you're going to have your shop in the house," Dave points out. "Bandsaws and tablesaws put out a lot of dust. When you say 'basement,' you must also say 'dust collection'—if you want to stay happily married!"

If I had to do it all over again

I would have dug the floor a little deeper, say another 4-5". That doesn't sound like much, but it would have made a big difference in the height of the ceiling. Also, I intend to replace the perforated hardboard."

ABOVE: Prior to his renovation, the only way into Dave's basement was through an interior stairway leading to the kitchen. So he added a 5'-wide set of cellar doors that allow him to easily move materials and projects into and out of the shop. "When you look at the overall costs, it proved to be relatively economical," Dave says.

LEFT: Over the years, Dave has amassed a good-size collection of parallel-jaw clamps; he dedicated the corner next to his finishing room to clamp racks. The area also serves hrs shop-made air filter (in box, top) and air compressor.

BELOW: Dave keeps his sharpening station near his lathe. Cabinets hold most of the important turning tools and accessories. "When I'm working at the lathe," Dave says, "I want to simply turn around to access my grinders and supplies."

LEFT: Most of the wood Dave uses is salvaged. "You'd be amazed how much lumber is around!" he marvels. "People will just give it away when they know you're a woodworker." The trick is storing it—that's where the 21' wall comes in handy. Usually, Dave has to take the whole kit and caboodle and sort out what stock won't work. But the savings, he says, are enormous. "I can't begin to count how many board feet of lumber I've received that have been virtually free!" The lumber storage area also is where Dave parks many of his machines. He added mobile bases to most of them for portability and space-saving.

BELOW: Dave keeps his sharpening station near his lathe. Cabinets hold most of the important turning tools and accessories. "When I'm working at the lathe," Dave says, "I want to simply turn around to access my grinders and supplies."

Scrounging and splurging

Dave found the fan for the system in a pile of stuff rescued from a grain bin. Salvage is Dave's salvation. He restored a very rusty Shopsmith drill press for little expense. "I use it for horizontal boring only, and it is great at that." A 5' mobile-home bathtub serves as a utility sink. "It has plenty of room for everything," Dave says. "I can even put my dogs in there when they need a bath."

Likewise, all Dave's cabinets were rescued from a university science lab that was slated for demolition. "I got them for next to nothing; new cabinets this sturdy would have cost a fortune. I painted them white, and they look great." With the money he saved, he splurged on a Biesemeyer inilersaw table system (shown on page 35).

He replaced the base cabinets' original heavy soapstone coun-tertops—which had no practical use, Dave says—with melamine and added simple solid-pine edging. The oversize extension wings on both sides of the saw enable Dave to handle the long pieces he needs to construct his shuffleboard labies (opposite).

Those artful creations proved thai despite the limitations of his shop—or thanks to the solutions to overcome them—Dave Knau has prospered in his woodworking, making lemonade out of what some people would consider lemons. And he does it from a hole in the ground.

Dave also buill a vent unit that services the main shop as well as the finishing room. When a sliding door panel is closed, air is drawn from the finishing room; when the panel is opened, air is drawn from the shop.

If you had virtually unlimited shop space, what would you do with it? A Colorado furnituremaker and turner has some surprising— and efficient—answers.

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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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