Projects and ideas

A magazine inspired Larry's design for this hand-plane cabinet; he collected all the planes over the years. "I've been trying to learn skills of old carpenters, especially using hand tools," says the former homebuilder. "For heavy work, you do need a motorized planer. But for fine work, a plane is better than a sander. With small, slow, easy strokes, you can finish wood almost to where It doesn't need sanding. It's sure quieter and not as dusty!"

To gauge how tall to make this cabinet, which supports Larry's mini lathe, he started from the top down. "You have to be at the right height to see what you're doing," he says. "For comfort, the lathe spindle needs to be at elbow height. So I measured from the floor to my elbows and went backwards. I built the small two-drawer cabinet first and the main mobile-base cabinet last." The lathe and dual-drawer cabinet are removable, revealing a worktop with bench-dog holes.

"I like to build things that have several functions," Larry Malohn says. His lathe-tool center—"my favorite cabinet in the whole shop, because I can scoot this around to any lathe I'm working at" —is two projects in one. The 12"-high top rack, which fits entirely atop the mobile cabinet, comes off for further mobility (inset above right). With the "top down" while at a lathe, Larry can set tools down on the foam pad. The cabinet stays put with two locking casters. Just for fun, Larry also built in a secret drawer in addition to the seven that are visible.

Living Room Wall Unit

Living Room Wall Unit

Woodshop Storage Solutions

If you've got two years to design your shop, there's no excuse for not getting it exactly the way you want.

Patience is a virtue in woodworking. Just lake it from Walt Segl, who spent two full years designing his workshop in Pleasant Valley. Pennsylvania, southeast of the town of Bethlehem. And yes, he's very satisfied.

"If I had to do it all over, I'd change nothing," says Walt, vice president of a pharmaceutical software company who fashions reproduction 18th-century American furniture as his passion. "Oh, there's a finishing room in my long-range plans, and we'd all like some more space. But it's worked out great for me."

Every facet of Walt's detached 30x40' structure melds function with comfort.

For example, Walt installed a radiant-heat system in the floor. It not only keeps the concrete floor pleasant to walk on but also helps keep the humidity comfortable. Although the system initially cost more to install than

Woodshop Storage Solutions

When Walt fashions bombé furniture, with its distinctive curvature, he needs to keep it in place because the pieces must be handcrafted. The four-section jig he devised (above) locks all four drawer fronts into position so he can shape them all as one continuous piece.

After two years of planning and construction, Walt Segl now has a shop large enough to handle multiple projects at once. "Moving things around was always, always a hassle in a basement shop," he says.

110-volt outlets—10 of them GFC1-protected—around the shop. There's space in his panel for 50 circuits. Not only does that give Walt room for expansion but also contributes to safety. "A former neighbor of mine lost his shop to a fire that was started by a faulty electrical circuit. 1 promised that if I was going to build my shop, I wasn't going to let that happen to me." He also installed an extensive security/fi re-al arm system.

Walt got the chance to build his dream shop when he and his wife, Debra, searched for a farm. "I always wanted to restore a stone farmhouse," he says.

But Walt had been planning his shop makeover for years. Previously, his shop was the basement of his former home.

"The basement had a lack of workroom and storage space," Walt remembers. "Also, when I was running equipment, you could hear it all over the house.

And Debra hated coming down to the basement to do laundry and find shavings and dust all over everything."

So for 10 years, Walt kept his wish list on a clipboard. Then, when he and Debra finally purchased their farm, Walt and his father. Bud. at last began to design the shop.

There were two limitations: keeping the shop's width at 30* to match the frontage of the guest cottage it replaced, and dealing with a steep grade sloping away from the structure.

A marathon project gets underway

The shop took 16 months from conception to completion. In the meantime, Walt was without a place to work. "As soon as we moved in, the new shop started going up," Walt relates. "Dad and I got the foundation with the radiant tubing in, and the building up and weathertight in the first six

When Walt fashions bombé furniture, with its distinctive curvature, he needs to keep it in place because the pieces must be handcrafted. The four-section jig he devised (above) locks all four drawer fronts into position so he can shape them all as one continuous piece.

months." The heating system, drywall, and the wiring, lighting, and dust collection took longer.

Walt overlooked no detail, installing a garage door and grading the entryway to provide truck access for equipment and lumber delivery. With a 9'-high ceiling and no supports, handling boards as long as 20' is easy.

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