Workshop as a party room

When I was a kid in Germany, my family would from time to time celebrate occasions with what we called a "schopffest". Literally translated, "schopffest" means "shed fest". Basically, a party in a shed. Living on a farm, there are plenty of large spaces that can be repurposed as party rooms. And the informal surroundings give it the informality of a barbecue with the coziness of a dinner party. The photos above are from a party in my dad's workshop back in Germany. This being the mid 70s, everybody smoked.

For a dinner party, I worked out that I'd need a table about 3.5 meters (12 feet) long to comfortably seat everybody. Other than the living room, the only space in my house big enough was my basement workshop.

With most of my machines on wheels, I managed to push two bandsaws, a 6" and a 12" jointer, the horizontal boring machine, slot mortiser, thickness planer, pantorouter, and radial arm saw all into the space between the table saw and workbenches. I then pushed my other table saw as far into that corner as it would go as well. It was like one of those puzzle games where you have to shift some blocks through a small opening.

With the back of the shop mostly cleared out, I set up two long tables end to end. Actually, a table, and an old desk top on two sawhorses.

Had I not torn out the old closet two years earlier, there would not have been enough room for the tables.

I bought two cheap bed sheets to use as table cloths - only $7 each! But once unfolded, they had some creases from how they were packed. So I stretched the creases a bit by pulling on the sheets and clamping them to the edges of the tables.

See also:

My workshop in its
usual messy state

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