Thursday, February 28, 2008

Future shop continued...

The number of steps involved in taking on a project like this are many I know and I am trying to take one step at a time and not get to carried away..... I know it will be a fun, exciting process and intend to enjoy each and ever step along the way.......

It was suggested by a friend as a way to save money and time was to get the foundation in and ready to go.... then have an ole fashioned barn raising. Whereas gathering together family and friends we could have the structure roughed in a very short time. All I would have to do would be to provide the beer(for after) and a big BBQ for the energy. Sounds like a great way to spend time with family/friends and get the shop built a lot less expensive...Hmmmm perhaps I should start stocking the coolers and the freezers now......

I called and talked to a local radiant heat/concrete specialist yesterday about the new shop project and asked for his input. He was very encouraging to work with and is putting together a spec sheet and prices of his recommendations. Now lets hope that it fits in with the budget.

After years of standing on a cold concrete floor or putting down mats or floor panels I begin to read about and hear of folks who had used radiant heat in garages and shops, not to mention their homes and absolutely loved it. It makes sense if I provide a heat source to a large concrete slab, it would create a very warm safe environment to work in. The positive results I read about convinced me that it was the way to go. During the installation you prepare the packed gravel surface and then lay down a special type of green board to direct the heat upward instead into the ground. Then of course you lay the normal rebar and stuff for a concrete floor, along with the radiant heat tubes.

I like the suggestions to also lay dust collection and wiring pipes in the floor before you pour the concrete. This is a great way to get power to the tablesaw and any other equipment, which will be in the center of the area and reduce trip hazards at the same time. My one thought about the dust collection is what happens if you plug it up. That could be fun to clear it out....

My plan is to use some sort of external heat source..ie...wood fired water boiler system with propane or electric backup. Living in the woods here provides easy access to lots of firewood, if you want to spend the energy to harvest it. A US forest service permit is available for $5 a cord, which if you have priced firewood lately is a great deal. Of course it means you have to go into the woods and cut and haul it back home and sweat a bit. Actually it is hard to beat a nice cool morning and heading to the woods for a load of firewood. Good exercise, fresh air, wildlife sightings, and quiet time. (until you fire up the chainsaw).

With the snow still piled way to high, I will have lots of time to plan and re-plan.....draw and re-draw....think and re-think...... these shop plans before I actually am able to start building, being as how it could be the 4th of July before the snow is completely gone.(SIGH!) So, I will have lots of time to incorporate lots of other folks ideas into the process. To adjust, discuss and ponder about all the different options....
To be a part of a community like this is awesome and I want to use it as much a resource as I possibility can. Now if I could just find a big pot of gold when I get to walk the land this would be a much easier process. Money...can't live with it....can't live with out it....good thing is can't take it with you so might as well enjoy it while you can. Throughout all this it is great to have a wife who supports these dreams and helps to look for options for obtaining the dream!!

To be continued….....
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