Workshop expansion

After I built my homemade bandsaw in 2010, I didn't have a good place to put my old bandsaw. It felt like space was starting to get a little bit tight in my workshop.

The easiest way to get a little extra room was to tear down the strange built-in closet that that was there when I bought the house. It was always a little dark and difficult to access. Really, kind of a strange thing that a previous-previous owner of the house had built.

So one evening, I figured there'd be no harm in opening up the walls to take a peek and get an idea of what I'd be facing when I do get around to demolishing it.

Maybe I'm a bit obsessive compulsive that way, but once I had opened up the wall a little bit, I just kept on going/ An hour and a half later, the closet was history.

I guess that went pretty quick. The bigger job ahead was to deal with the huge mess I made in the process!

When I originally set up my basement workshop, I painted the floor, but not the area inside the closet. So the next thing to do was to scrape off various layers of old paint from that area and paint it to the same colour as the rest of the floor.

Of course, once I was painting part of the floor, I figured, I might as well repaint some of the area where I do most of my work. The concrete floor in my basement isn't very good, so every time I drop a bar clamp or something similar, it takes a chip out of the floor. So I propped up my workbenches and tables saw a little, so I could paint under the feet.

I had, by this time, disposed of all the demolition debris. But freeing up so much floor space for painting made space a bit tight. I had all my machines kind of shoved together in a central area. Fortunately, most of them are on wheels, so this wasn't hard to do.

With the closet demolished, I had to move an electrical socket and the light switch. While I was at it, I added a few more electrical circuits, not just where the closet was, but also on the opposite wall. My homemade bandsaw runs off 220 volts. With both my table saws also running off 220, this made for three machines that needed to plug into 220 V, so the one double socket wouldn't do anymore.

I also had to fix up the drywall where the closet had been, which prompted me to fix the drywall in a few other places. That, in turn, necessitated painting. I also painted the duct running through my shop while I was at it.

Even though I only added about two square meters (22 square feet) of floor space, it made a big difference. I was starting to question my judgment during the whole process - whether such a small gain in floor space was really worth all that trouble. But in retrospect, I think it was.

But while this was going on, I wasn't building any projects, so I didn't have anything new to write my weekly articles about. Fortunately, there was still more to write about my homemade bandsaw. Also, readers sent me some pictures of their cool projects.

I also found that my hot water pipe ran along the ceiling exactly along the edges of where that closet used to be. A strange place for a closet, and a hot water pipe. I suspect the previous owner put the closet there to sort of hide the hot water pipe. With the closet gone, I decided to reroute the hot water pipe to no longer run through my workshop.

See also:

Small house addition

More home improvement projects