Author Topic: Utah Workshop from Ground Up  (Read 2486 times)

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Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« on: December 15, 2017, 04:08 PM »
I've enjoyed reading other users builds on here and look forward to sharing my own.  My wife and I will be moving from San Francisco/Bay Area to Utah upon the completion of a house that we are designing.

Currently I work out of my narrow garage and I am excited about the opportunity to build a dedicated workshop and I am hoping for feedback and suggestions. 

If it were up to me, I would have a tiny little sleeping area/kitchen and an enormous barn as a workshop, but since I am married and we are planning on a few kids, I unfortunately need to be a bit more realistic.  As of now it is looking like the house and barn/workshop will be similar in size. 

My wife is an interior designer with a background in spec homes, so one valid requirement is that the workshop space is somewhat usable for a future buyer.  Thus, we are attempting to design it in a way that a future buyer could use it as a play/ half court basketball or parking for an RV and or boat.  This will require ceiling heights slightly higher than what I would consider ideal, but if it allows for me to build a great shop than I am more than willing to sacrifice.  This means that we are looking at roughly a 2500 sq/ft.

This will be a mixed use space where I will be doing woodworking, finishing (in a small finishing room) and metal work.  I hope to separate the wood and metal work with distance and a physical barrier to prevent fire risks and cross contamination in general. 

Ive attached a very early sketchup model that I have used to try and determine minimum space requirements.272640-0

Thanks for reading

Anthony

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2017, 04:10 PM »
Flooring:    We are early in the stages of design, but I'd love your feedback.  I grew up in my dad’s beautiful wooden workshop in the Northeast.  I loved working on the wooden floors and it had such an inspiring feel.  However, it was poorly insulated and freezing cold in the winter months.  What are your thoughts about flooring and heating? My current shop has epoxied concrete floors.  These have been maintenance free and easy to keep clean, but are hard on the feet, body, tools and wood when dropped.   


Heating:  I am also thinking about doing radiant heat in this space as I have enjoyed having it in my current house.  Again I like the idea of wooden floors, but this would likely eliminate the possibility of radiant heat.  Do we have any radiant heat users out there? 

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2017, 04:10 PM »
Sun Orientation:  Along the same lines, I was dreaming of a north/south oriented shop, but it appears based on the restrictions of the site that this will not be possible.  If you had freedom in design how would you orient your shop?  I like the idea of a north facing workbench area for diffused light, but I currently work in a dungeon so any natural light will be a nice upgrade. 

Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 758
Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2017, 05:15 PM »
Flooring:    We are early in the stages of design, but I'd love your feedback.  I grew up in my dad’s beautiful wooden workshop in the Northeast.  I loved working on the wooden floors and it had such an inspiring feel.  However, it was poorly insulated and freezing cold in the winter months.  What are your thoughts about flooring and heating? My current shop has epoxied concrete floors.  These have been maintenance free and easy to keep clean, but are hard on the feet, body, tools and wood when dropped.   


Heating:  I am also thinking about doing radiant heat in this space as I have enjoyed having it in my current house.  Again I like the idea of wooden floors, but this would likely eliminate the possibility of radiant heat.  Do we have any radiant heat users out there?

We're in a similar humidity climate (~ 14" precip annually) and have radiant heat with engineered jatoba in our house.  We have some very minimal gapping - on the order of 1/32 over 3-4 feet.  It's just enough to notice, but not enough to jump out at you.  Our neighbor who has solid wood now has 1/4" gaps where the main line is, with 1/8" gaps elsewhere.

My shop has radiant in-floor in concrete, and is still very comfortable.  I use foam pads in standing and other high use areas.  I admit that I do like the idea of wood floors

What about radiators instead of in-floor?  Then you just have to worry about getting the water to the radiators.

Another way to get comfortable energy in a cold climate with lots of wind is to insulate with poly foam.  We also have that in house and shop above grade.  It adds wind protection, structural rigidity, and give you more insulation value per inch than cellulose or fiberglass.  With that you could consider radiant natural gas on the ceiling, and do wood floors with no worry.

Offline HarveyWildes

  • Posts: 758
Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2017, 05:20 PM »
Sun Orientation:  Along the same lines, I was dreaming of a north/south oriented shop, but it appears based on the restrictions of the site that this will not be possible.  If you had freedom in design how would you orient your shop?  I like the idea of a north facing workbench area for diffused light, but I currently work in a dungeon so any natural light will be a nice upgrade.

I have a sharpening station right next to a 4x3 window and don't like the glare.  I do like the more diffuse light at the workbench in the middle of the room.  My shop is oriented with most of the windows facing northwest, which means I don't get much direct sun until mid to late afternoon, depending on the season.  I like it that way because Colorado has a lot of direct sun and it tends to make the afternoon temps shoot up.  Overall things are well enough insulated that neither heat nor cold are issues.

Offline rvieceli

  • Posts: 792
Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2017, 05:30 PM »
Anthony - You might want to take a look at this thread by Haxit when he finished out his shop to get some ideas.

http://festoolownersgroup.com/workshops-and-mobile-vehicle-based-shops/new-workshop-build-49257/

Also Timothy Wilmots youtube channel has some great videos of his shop build as well. He's TimTools over here.

http://www.youtube.com/user/ruskijager/videos?disable_polymer=1


Offline Pike_101

  • Posts: 14
Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2017, 06:05 PM »
Isolate the compressor and more importantly the dust collection from the main work space. This would be priority one for me.

Second, make sure you give yourself enough finishing room based on the type of projects you do- which you may have already done. This is an area that many overlook or go too small with and then in hindsight build makeshift or inefficient spray areas.

I have done a fair amount of work installing air handling systems in larger facilities. It pays to do it right from the start, especially if you're building from scratch. These add a lot to health, safety, and just plain comfort and enjoyment too.

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2017, 08:34 PM »
I have a sharpening station right next to a 4x3 window and don't like the glare.  I do like the more diffuse light at the workbench in the middle of the room.  My shop is oriented with most of the windows facing northwest, which means I don't get much direct sun until mid to late afternoon, depending on the season.  I like it that way because Colorado has a lot of direct sun and it tends to make the afternoon temps shoot up.  Overall things are well enough insulated that neither heat nor cold are issues.

Really Good info.  Our architect has warned us of the powerful direct sun in that part of the country as we attempt to design our house.  This is a great point to consider for the shop as well!

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2017, 08:44 PM »
We're in a similar humidity climate (~ 14" precip annually) and have radiant heat with engineered jatoba in our house.  We have some very minimal gapping - on the order of 1/32 over 3-4 feet.  It's just enough to notice, but not enough to jump out at you.  Our neighbor who has solid wood now has 1/4" gaps where the main line is, with 1/8" gaps elsewhere.

My shop has radiant in-floor in concrete, and is still very comfortable.  I use foam pads in standing and other high use areas.  I admit that I do like the idea of wood floors

What about radiators instead of in-floor?  Then you just have to worry about getting the water to the radiators.

Another way to get comfortable energy in a cold climate with lots of wind is to insulate with poly foam.  We also have that in house and shop above grade.  It adds wind protection, structural rigidity, and give you more insulation value per inch than cellulose or fiberglass.  With that you could consider radiant natural gas on the ceiling, and do wood floors with no worry.

Thanks for the feedback, this is particularly helpful coming from someone in similar climate.  I will certainly be looking at a bunch of different options for heating and love all the suggestions. 

One of the things that will certainly complicate the matter is that I will also have a dedicated metal working area where I would want concrete floors ( due to sparks from welding and grinding etc.) If I go with wood floor for the woodshop and concrete floor in the metal shop the transition will be tricky (not in execution but for aesthetics/usability for potential future buyer.) as well as how this will impact the heating choices. 

Also, is there a heat source that is more efficient/effective for higher ceiling heights?  This is what drove me to think radiant would be a good solution, but I am pretty clueless. 

Offline Bob D.

  • Posts: 800
Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2017, 08:44 PM »
Incorporate some duct space in the floor so you can have power(240 and 120), dust collection, compressed air at a couple locations in the center of the shop. These can be terminated in floor boxes and used as/when needed. Really they wouldn't have to be anything more than some 3 or 4 inch conduits run from the perimeter to  a couple locations in the center of the room. Then if you ever need them you can pull cable or hose through the duct and not have any trip hazards on the floor or commodities suspended overhead that may interfere with other operations or just be unsightly.

Segregate your air compressor and dust collector from your shop areas so you can work with much less noise. You will thank yourself for this every time you go in the shop.

Add some ceiling windows or skylights.

I would have a double door or a overhead door into each workspace for moving big tools and workpieces in and out.
-----
It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2017, 08:47 PM »
Anthony - You might want to take a look at this thread by Haxit when he finished out his shop to get some ideas.

http://festoolownersgroup.com/workshops-and-mobile-vehicle-based-shops/new-workshop-build-49257/



Also Timothy Wilmots youtube channel has some great videos of his shop build as well. He's TimTools over here.

http://www.youtube.com/user/ruskijager/videos?disable_polymer=1

I have binged on Timothys channel and have had some conversations about his shop.  He has been really helpful in talking about separating spaces for different tasks and functions. 

Thanks for the link to Haxit's build!  I have casually looked at that thread but a deeper dive is certainly in order.  Thanks for the reminder

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2017, 08:52 PM »
Isolate the compressor and more importantly the dust collection from the main work space. This would be priority one for me.

Absolutely.  My sketchup model currently has them in a closet (I removed the walls for a bit more clarity) but I agree that this is a must.  Do you think a well insulated and sheet rocked closet would suffice?   

I was thinking the closet would really only be accessible from the exterior, this would be how I would empty the dust collection and drain the compressor.  Realizing that snow will likely have to be shoveled during the winter months to get access. 

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #12 on: December 15, 2017, 08:59 PM »
Second, make sure you give yourself enough finishing room based on the type of projects you do- which you may have already done. This is an area that many overlook or go too small with and then in hindsight build makeshift or inefficient spray areas.

This is an area where I am most excited about but also pretty clueless.  Currently I have a space allocated of about 12'x12'.  I most make furniture and desks (like bedroom dressers sizes)  Do you think this would suffice? 

I was also hoping to have an area to powder coat metal parts in here as well.  Is this just asking for problems?

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2017, 09:01 PM »
I have done a fair amount of work installing air handling systems in larger facilities. It pays to do it right from the start, especially if you're building from scratch. These add a lot to health, safety, and just plain comfort and enjoyment too.

Sorry for what may be an obvious question but is this simply dust collection or is there more too it than that?  What kind of tips have you learned from your experience?

Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #14 on: December 15, 2017, 09:08 PM »
Incorporate some duct space in the floor so you can have power(240 and 120), dust collection, compressed air at a couple locations in the center of the shop. These can be terminated in floor boxes and used as/when needed. Really they wouldn't have to be anything more than some 3 or 4 inch conduits run from the perimeter to  a couple locations in the center of the room. Then if you ever need them you can pull cable or hose through the duct and not have any trip hazards on the floor or commodities suspended overhead that may interfere with other operations or just be unsightly.

Thanks for the suggestions Bob! I really like the idea of this, my only hesitation is the hard turns that the dust collection pipe would need to make in this setup.  Do you think this is a realistic concern.  If not, than I absolutely on board.  My previous employer had over head pipes running to his central stations and it certainly was more cluttered looking. 

Segregate your air compressor and dust collector from your shop areas so you can work with much less noise. You will thank yourself for this every time you go in the shop.
  Great advice

Add some ceiling windows or skylights.
Will do!
I would have a double door or a overhead door into each workspace for moving big tools and workpieces in and out.
I am planning on having one large door to allow my van to be parked inside as well as bringing in tools and supplies. 

Offline Pike_101

  • Posts: 14
Re: Utah Workshop from Ground Up
« Reply #15 on: December 15, 2017, 11:45 PM »
Second, make sure you give yourself enough finishing room based on the type of projects you do- which you may have already done. This is an area that many overlook or go too small with and then in hindsight build makeshift or inefficient spray areas.

This is an area where I am most excited about but also pretty clueless.  Currently I have a space allocated of about 12'x12'.  I most make furniture and desks (like bedroom dressers sizes)  Do you think this would suffice? 

I was also hoping to have an area to powder coat metal parts in here as well.  Is this just asking for problems?

If you are doing single pieces or just a few at a time I think you'll have ample space. It is when you do higher volume that space gets crowded quickly! It is nice to have the room for drying and storing so you can keep a dust free area, yet still work in the rest of the shop while things cure for a few days. I think you are on the right track just having included some dedicated space right from the get go. Make sure to build in ventilation specific for the room.

Sorry for what may be an obvious question but is this simply dust collection or is there more too it than that?  What kind of tips have you learned from your experience?

Bring fresh air in, exhaust the filtered out. Working in a closed system where you're relying on recirculated air and a filter (no matter the rating) to save your sinuses and lungs is not something I'd recommend long term. The cost of fresh air through a heat exchanger is trivial, and you can save a lot on filter costs and still have far cleaner air compared to recirculating in a closed environment.

I do a lot of high volume production work, making all sorts of products out of wood (and occasionally other materials) for mass market. The most common place I get new work and new products: smaller shops and cottage industry workers that give it up due to health issues brought on by exposure to dust, paint, etc. It is extremely sad to see happen [crying] Lots skip over expenses like proper ventilation and dust collection to try and make a few more bucks.

I am guessing Utah has some wonderful air to offer, take advantage of it!