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Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
4/5/18 12:34 p.m.

As always, this will be as much a build diary as it is a place for me to ask questions. I've set up a couple of garages from scratch, but I have some extra capabilities/components for this one.

But here's the intro. We just moved into a new place that happens to have a 30x40 shop on the property. It's a steel building that's about 20 years old and totally pristine inside and out. It sits on a couple of acres and is insulated.

Currently, it has infrared heat and a single ceiling fan. No water. 220v.

Plans include installing a lift, adding copious amounts of storage, running Cat5 over from the house, potentially running water and building it out to a place where I can build stuff and park stuff. The house has a 2-car attached garage with an 8x11 alcove that will be used for "clean" projects such as woodwork and electronics fiddling.

Meet our subject.

The view from the shop does not suck.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
4/5/18 12:40 p.m.

The first modification was to move the bike shed from my old house. This is 8x10 and sits on a wooden frame. Five guys picked it up, dropped it on the trailer and installation was the reverse of deinstallation. It's a short trip from the old place to the new, thankfully.

And voila. The XJ is parked outside because there's a Miata, an MGB GT, a Mini, a CRX and a Westfalia in there already along with the contents of my previous 5 (small) car garage.


That's the state right now. The shop is full of cars and stuff. Time to plan and figure before putting everything away.


Floating Doc
Floating Doc Reader
4/5/18 12:42 p.m.

Along for the ride!

Lof8 Dork
4/5/18 12:44 p.m.


mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
4/5/18 12:45 p.m.


Carson SuperDork
4/5/18 12:48 p.m.

Yeah, that view does not suck.

MazdaFace HalfDork
4/5/18 12:57 p.m.

That view will be all the inspiration you'll need on projects. I love it. 

SVreX MegaDork
4/5/18 12:57 p.m.

I really hate you!!

enginenerd Reader
4/5/18 1:15 p.m.

Wow! That is the dream. 

I feel pretty lucky to be able to do all the wrenching I do but I would absolutely love some space like your property has. 6-7 cars with a small residential 2 car garage is getting overwhelming. Will be watching this thread and taking some notes!

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
4/5/18 1:20 p.m.

laugh I'm pretty jazzed about this myself.

One thing I'm thinking of doing is moving the air compressor outside so it's a bit quieter in the shop. I'm considering a little steel lean-to. I'd extend the concrete pad a bit and leech one of these on one wall. While it would be easy to cut  a pass-through door, I think I might just keep it separate to minimize noise transmission. The "air shed" would also provide a bit of extra storage room for non-car things, like my bee keeping supplies.

Thoughts? Downsides?

AngryCorvair MegaDork
4/5/18 1:28 p.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

it will be loud as berkeley for your neighbors...

Karacticus Dork
4/5/18 1:28 p.m.

How long of a run and/or easy will it be to get the Cat 5 out to the shop?

I'm going to need to do something similar to get internet a couple of hundred feet from my wife's clinic to her barn, and assuming these can actually be made to work reliably, I was quite surprised how reasonable the cost is for these wireless bridges.

Ubiquiti NanoStation locoM2

fanfoy Dork
4/5/18 1:32 p.m.

I am totally jealous of your new spot. 


For the air compressor, it will be loud for the neighbors unless you insulate. Also, if it gets cold, you may have problems. Air compressors are not meant to operate near freezing temperatures. If you cut an opening in your wall to heat up the space, it would help but you'll lose a bit of sound deadening. 


Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
4/5/18 1:39 p.m.

I figure the air compressor is going to be in a steel building regardless, so putting it in a separate shed isn't going to be that much louder for the neighbors. I can always put a layer of fiberglass insulation in the shed. One thing I found at my old place - bolting the compressor to the ground makes a big difference to noise levels. It's a 60 gallon oiled compressor, BTW. The temperature is a good point, hadn't thought of that.

I've played with Wifi extenders in the past and never been all that happy with them. A pro buddy of mine suggested a directional antenna, but agrees that nothing beats cable. If I'm going to run water down from the house, I'll just use the same trench for the Cat 5.

onemanarmy Reader
4/5/18 1:49 p.m.

will be following....

PMRacing SuperDork
4/5/18 1:55 p.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

I have my compressor mounted on a wood loft. However cut Miata bumpstops (the cone part) happen to fit perfectly in the feet of my compressor. Huge difference in making it quiet.

RevRico UltraDork
4/5/18 2:02 p.m.

 If I'm going to run water down from the house, I'll just use the same trench for the Cat 5.

Ok, so you're running conduit down from the house. Do yourself a favor and run at least one extra and just tape it or cap it.  The cost of the extra pipe is negligible compared to having to dig everything up again sometime down the road.

Maybe you'll never use it, but maybe someday you'll want air in the home hobby area, or coax in this shop or something and it will already be there ready to go

I've been kicking myself for not doing that when I ran power to the car port because now I need to dig everything back up to run an airline to the house since I upgraded compressors. 

Almost a distractingly nice view from there, jealous doesn't begin to describe it. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
4/5/18 2:08 p.m.

Oh yeah, that's the plan. I MAY be able to fish the network cable down the existing conduit for the electrical, but it's a pretty long way. Haven't measured it, but maybe 100 yds and I'm not sure exactly where it comes into the house. There was some work done on the house a few years ago that really messed with the internal cable wiring, but that's a different problem. It does mean that I may not be able to get Cat 5 where I want it easily. There is adventure ahead in that regard.

krautastic New Reader
4/5/18 2:33 p.m.

What does one of those steel lean to's cost? I have similar aspirations of moving my air compressor and other non-essential garage items out of the space. 

badwaytolive New Reader
4/5/18 2:51 p.m.
RevRico said:

Almost a distractingly nice view from there, jealous doesn't begin to describe it. 


Stuff of dreams here. In for the follow.


AWSX1686 Dork
4/5/18 2:53 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

Wow. That is beautiful! I am jealous and quoting just so the picture shows up again!

Wayslow HalfDork
4/5/18 2:56 p.m.

I have a 30'x40' metal shop at my place too. It also has a full loft. It's amazing how fast you I can fill up space. That said I also have a lean to extension that houses my compressor and forced air oil furnace. I built it large enough to store my engine hoist, table saw, chop saw and transmission lift. It's nice to keep stuff you don't use every day out of your work space but still readily accessible. My extension is 8'x12' but I wish I'd gone 12'x12'.

docwyte SuperDork
4/5/18 6:56 p.m.

Super jealous of that shop!  I'm making due with a 3 car since I'm in the 'burbs.  

Jerry From LA
Jerry From LA SuperDork
4/5/18 7:05 p.m.

Juniper-and-sagebrush country.

Stampie UltraDork
4/5/18 7:06 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

I MAY be able to fish the network cable down the existing conduit for the electrical, but it's a pretty long way. 

If you can seal around the electrical wire at one end and pull a vacuum you can use the plastic bag tied to string trick.

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