Building a new shop and need advice! - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 08-16-2017, 01:15 PM Thread Starter
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Building a new shop and need advice!

In the next month or so I will be breaking ground on a new house and separate workshop! As you might imagine, I have a ton of questions! My current shop is in my basement and is about 12x30.

The inside of the new workshop will be 24x30 with 10ft ceilings which is as big as the budget will allow!

I do not plan to put any dust collection or electrical in the slab because it gives me a headache trying to figure out the tool layout. I've tried to use the Grizzly tool but still get frustrated! So I'm thinking about surface mounting the electrical in conduit and running dust collection overhead as required.....thoughts/comments.

The side walls will be 2x6 and insulated. I'm thinking about putting up plywood for the walls so I can hang anything anywhere I wish. Maybe some pegboard where appropriate but I hate that stuff....thoughts/comments..

The roof system will use trusses and hopefully I can afford to spray foam between the rafters. I don't know the best thing to do about the ceiling! Should I leave it open or hang drywall? ....thoughts/comments.

And then there's lighting....I will have a fair amount of natural light. It's a important subject and not sure which direction to go!! ....thoughts/comments.

I know this is a lot but I would like to have the forum's thoughts on any or all of the topics raised! Thanks in advance!!

"It don't take all kinds, there just are all kinds"
Granny Clampett
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post #2 of 9 Old 08-16-2017, 01:51 PM
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Not sure where you are located but anything installed before pouring concrete is pretty much set in stone LOL And in certain locales duct work (DC piping) would fill up with water when under ground when it was real wet outside

I like the way you are thinking, it might just be best to have it built before you lay it out, it is easier to visualize how you want the shop laid out

I have the roof of my wood shop sprayed last summer, about 5 1/2 inches I love it. I am in Texas so the winters were easy to heat it but the sheet metal roof had a 7 1/2 ton solar load on it and I only had 5 tons installed, so the only somewhat cool spots were under a vent. It is 30x50 and now in 100+ days it stays about 65 inside, I have gotten more work done since it was insulated than ever before

I owned my own HVAC/R bidness so I wasn't in there much in the summer but since I retired it is my new home
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post #3 of 9 Old 08-16-2017, 03:05 PM
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Agree that not installing in the floor is best. Gives you flexibility.

Instead of putting plywood on all of the walls, I would use pegboard on at least half of the shop. Maybe one wall.

Years ago when I remodeled my store I used high quality, decorative pegboard on all of the walls. I used a full pallet of 50 sheets for that job.

A few years when I added 12' onto my garage I covered both walls in 1/4 pegboard. Very much pleased with the outcome.

Do not skimp on electrical outlets. You may want to have a few 220 volt outlets also available.

As already noted, insulate, insulate and insulate more. It is cheap when you do it as you build. My garage is 22'by 24' and I can cool it with one window unit.

George

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post #4 of 9 Old 08-16-2017, 03:53 PM
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I've laid out several shops. Never did get the perfect lay out. I like to keep walking to a minimum so put to most used things close to your bench or main work surface. I also hate peg board and would go with white melamine shadow boards. I like to make, to scale, cutouts of the tools on the band saw. Make them out of something easy to grip & move. 1/2" thick wood? Paper doesn't work well. For your size shop maybe 1/2" to the foot scale. Draw your shop on a piece of Masonite, plywood or what ever. Make scale lumber and sheet goods. Do layouts and photo each one, keep notes about each one. Put it all on your computer for easy reference. Remember you will likely add equipment over time. Where will it go? Utilize the in & out-feed areas for several machines in the same space.
Electrical: I like surface mount conduit & boxes. Put lots of outlets around the outside walls, then some outlets for ceiling drops, cord reels etc. You can imbed some in the concrete floor but likely they won't be in the right place after awhile. Each 4 square box can have at least 2 circuits, 4 if you split the duplex. All 120V outlets should be wired with 12 gage & 20A breakers. Lighting: We changed over to T8 LED, 5000K and like them. A 4' tube costs about $11 and can be installed on a electronic ballasted T8 fluorescent fixture. We only have one light switched by the door the rest are switched at the breakers. You've gone with a low ceiling so protective covers would be in order. Your compressor and dust collector are best located where you don't have to listen to them and where dumping barrels or bags is easy and outside of the shop. A deep sink for cleanup would be nice.
Dust collection: Keep in mind that you are only going to be using one outlet at a time so going with a drunk system doesn't make sense! Trunks with branches work when several outlets are in use at once. But fail to provide optimum velocities when stopped down to one or two outlets.
The advantage of a ceiling is the refection of lighting and providing an attic space for hot air. If you put in a ceiling that's where the insulation should be
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post #5 of 9 Old 08-16-2017, 05:57 PM
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On the lighting you might want to look into LED's they use much less power and you won't have to chance out tubes/bulbs nearly as often

And on the wiring unless you like to run EMT, MC (Metallic clad) cable is much faster and easier to use, and it still is enclosed in metal
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post #6 of 9 Old 08-16-2017, 08:37 PM
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Agreed on the led lighting. I changed out all my flourescents in my basement shop for Hyperikon led tubes that had the option of removing the ballast and running straight to 110. I get twice the light for half the power now.
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post #7 of 9 Old 12-08-2017, 07:12 PM Thread Starter
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Update

Thanks to all for the comments and suggestions! Sorry for delay in responding but I've had my hands full with the build

There will be no in slab dust collection or electrical. The slab was poured last week. Framing to begin next week weather permitting.

I'm in the process of making a scale wood model to assist in layout and electrical.

Will post some pictures as the build progresses!

Thanks
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post #8 of 9 Old 12-11-2017, 05:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeasureTwice View Post
In the next month or so I will be breaking ground on a new house and separate workshop! As you might imagine, I have a ton of questions! My current shop is in my basement and is about 12x30.

The inside of the new workshop will be 24x30 with 10ft ceilings which is as big as the budget will allow!

A 24 x 30 shop with 10í ceilings sounds great to me.

I do not plan to put any dust collection or electrical in the slab because it gives me a headache trying to figure out the tool layout. I've tried to use the Grizzly tool but still get frustrated! So I'm thinking about surface mounting the electrical in conduit and running dust collection overhead as required.....thoughts/comments.

Electrical in conduit is fine if you donít want to run the wiring through the walls.
Instead of a duplex outlet, I suggest a 4 outlet. Space these 4 gang boxes about every 8 feet.
If you run the DC overhead, I would keep it below the ceiling and not put it in the attic.

The side walls will be 2x6 and insulated. I'm thinking about putting up plywood for the walls so I can hang anything anywhere I wish. Maybe some pegboard where appropriate but I hate that stuff....thoughts/comments..

Plywood or OSB for walls will be much better than drywall. I personally donít like pegboard very much.

The roof system will use trusses and hopefully I can afford to spray foam between the rafters. I don't know the best thing to do about the ceiling! Should I leave it open or hang drywall? ....thoughts/comments.

I think you will be better off with a ceiling. Even if itís drywall. The ceiling will help direct the lighting also. You can insulate between the ceiling joist. Foam beats all other types of insulation in R value. Batt insulation is the easiest to install yourself.

And then there's lighting....I will have a fair amount of natural light. It's a important subject and not sure which direction to go!! ....thoughts/comments.

Shop lights are cheap and easy to install. You canít have too much light. If you install them on two circuits you can turn on half the shop at a time. Add o couple of ceiling outlets in case you want to add ceiling fans, air filters, etc later.

I know this is a lot but I would like to have the forum's thoughts on any or all of the topics raised! Thanks in advance!!
This will be the equivalent of a 3 car garage. A very nice shop.

If you don't have time to do it right the first time, when will you have time to do it over?
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post #9 of 9 Old 12-12-2017, 07:14 PM
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You are on the right track with conduit and overhead dust collection. I have set up two medium size shops. My current shop is 32' x 75'. Every single circuit is surface run in thinwall conduit. This can come in handy at times, especially when you figure out that that machine should have been over there... but it's a 240 volt machine, not 120 volt! With conduit, ain't no stress! Simply pull in a new pair of blacks, change the receptacle, plug in and move on.

I also run my dust collection overhead and make drops where needed. And I never glue up the PVC. A couple of short screws and a wrap of duct tape on each joint make for an easily modified piping system. Machine in wrong place? Simply relocate it and modify the collector pipe to match. The screws also give a great place to anchor your static grounding wire. Got a plug up? Take it apart wherever, clear the plug and done (though this rarely happens).

All of my walls are painted A/C ply. 1/2" is plenty. Go 5/8" if you're planning on hanging a lawn tractor. 1/2" is plenty for anything else. Plywood is so much easier and more versatile than pegboard. No need to buy special fittings or hangers to hang that odd thing. Just crank out a custom hanger out of either scrap wood or steel and screw it to the wall! I also use a lot of trim screws. They have a tiny head and work well with hanging normal stuff. They also remove easily.

Now this last one might or might not work for you, but I had it for over twenty years in my former building. I didn't insulate the ceiling per se. I screwed 4' x 8' sheets of 1" styrofoam to the trusses. It was light and easy to install by myself, it insulates well enough to easily heat (I do not air condition), it's white and bright, and it looks pretty decent. I don't recall having ever damaged it.

Setting up a new shop can be stressful; you want it to be perfectly laid out and built. The reality is that it's a rare occurrence to get it "right" the first time. Shops are often a work in progress forever. I'll bet I have thirty drawings laying here and there from sketching various machine scenarios. I haven't got it quite right yet! The main thing is to have fun with it, think outside the box on occasion, and make the building easily able to morph into your next vision.

Cheers

Another $000,000,000.02 worth of advice,
Mark
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