Garage floor for wood shop
I am moving on to the final step of a garage to hobbyist woodworking shop transformation. I have insulated the walls, put in ceiling joists and hung drywall for blown in insulation, built an overhead storage area for family storage, and will soon be replacing the windows, and piping in a heat exchanger fan to heat with water from my outdoor wood boiler. My question has to do with the floor.
Right now, there is a very beat up concrete floor; it is pitted, cracked, and out of level in many places. I have patched the cracks with epoxy sealant, filled most of the large craters from pitting due to road salt, and did a rough fill-in with concrete in an area where there was sloping concrete toward a drain.
I'm thinking of using a 1/4-3/8" slurry of self leveling concrete to get things flat and level (so that machines can roll easily, and so I can sweep up shop dust). This will be followed by an epoxy coat, or a simple waterproof floor paint. - sorry about the photo being flipped, I tried two versions and neither showed up properly in my post. The really rough section in the foreground is what the whole floor was like before I patched it--now it looks like where I am standing.
I have been told by my master boat builder father in law that instead of concrete as a finished floor, I should use furring strips and plywood, and forget about the $600 cost of the self leveling concrete. He says "if you drop a chisel on a concrete floor, it is ruined."
Can you please tell me your opinion on what I should do? I plan to live here til I die, so I want to do it once, but I also don't want to waste money. (I am aware that concrete is not the nicest thing to stand on for hours on end, and that it provides very little insulation value, but I don't think those are my main concerns because this is not a place where I will be working long hours -- at least I think...)
What would you do (or have you done) if you were in my shoes?
Common sense is genius in it's working clothes. - Ralph Waldo Emerson