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Thread: Making my shop smaller...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Lakeport NY and/or the nearest hotel
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    Making my shop smaller...

    yes, really.

    It got down below freezing last night, and despite my excellent insulating job on 1/2 of the shop, the heater still needed a bit of help to make things reasonably warm in there. To that end, I'm planning on making my shop smalller this weekend. In addition to finishing my lathe stand and stuffing more insulation in the last remaining walls, I'm going to go pick up about 6 sheets of the blue ridgid insulating sheets and make a ceiling at about the 10' or so level. I'm going to screw them onto the bottom of the joists under the loft, and then put some cleats along the wall to hold up some sheets to keep the heat down where it is useful. I'm also going to be up and down my ladder a bunch, installing soffits and some 1/2" ply to cover the gaps in the upper walls where snow blew in last winter.

    If I have any energy left, I'm also going to build a solar heater or two out of left over 1/2" ply. basically a two chambered box that pumps warm air into the shop when it is sunny, and stops when the sun goes down. A few 2x4's, some black paint and I'll be in business!
    -Ned

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Tokyo Japan
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    Insulation is a good thing, I'm surrounded on 5 of 6 sides by the warm earth

    Take pictures!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Ablett View Post
    Insulation is a good thing, I'm surrounded on 5 of 6 sides by the warm earth

    Take pictures!

    was there really a doubt that I would take pictures Stu?
    -Ned

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Sacramento, CA
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    Ceilings are one of the biggest helpers in keeping a space warm, i've found. Good idea, ned

    About this heater - I'm curious to see whatcha got cookin (!) there - it sounds quite interesting. Any details?
    Jason Beam
    Sacramento, CA

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Beam View Post
    Ceilings are one of the biggest helpers in keeping a space warm, i've found. Good idea, ned

    About this heater - I'm curious to see whatcha got cookin (!) there - it sounds quite interesting. Any details?
    Jason,
    I'm in the process of researching it, but basically it is a two chambered box, upper one 'Should' should ideally be glass (I'm going to try and use corrugated clear roofing panels from the borg)

    here's a link with the basic idea:

    http://www.builditsolar.com/Projects...sungrabber.htm


    I'm also thinking of building a couple of those for my house to help defray heating costs. have to see how much the materials (plastic) are going to be first.
    Last edited by Ned Bulken; 10-15-2009 at 03:49 PM.
    -Ned

  6. #6
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    Oh check that out ... i hadn't seen that style before. I've seen the soda cans collector system, but this one's inventive. I like how it's built to be used through a window.

    I can't wait to see how it works out for ya
    Jason Beam
    Sacramento, CA

  7. #7
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    Ned, For the solar collecter, a cleat nailed on the top side, just inside the window might help with holding it in and give a good place to weather strip against. Great idea!
    Darren

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    GTA Ontario Canada
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    Ned think about maybe using Roxul http://www.roxul.com/residential/pro...tbatt%e2%84%a2
    the green stuff with a poly vapor barrier. When i did my ceiling i stapled the poly to the joists and then lay the roxul on top. It holds its own self up pretty good too if you have to shove it in between the joists and then cover with poly. I think you will get more bang for your buck there than the rigid stuff and a better R value. I used the R22 Roxul and its precut and you can cut it with a breadknife to shape. Another thing a Pro at the HD told me is you can compress Roxul or it can get wet and it will still hold the R value not so for the pink stuff. Dont know about the rigid stuff seemed too expensive for me for the Rvalue that it provides.

    I also made sure to seal the gaps using expanded foam (Great Stuff ) at HD http://building.dow.com/na/en/produc...y/pro13gun.htmand a little tip i found here is that its worth the investment to buy a reusable gun that screws onto the can of expanded foam. First those cans are larger and cheaper per unit foam and then you dont get forced to try use the whole can just because you started it and dont want the straw blocking up. There is a spray cleaner that you attach to the gun that cleans it out after use so a single can is then able to be used multiple times until you have used it up and it then goes a long way unlike the one time use ones.

    Enjoy, i will be thinking of you when i am nice and toasty in my shop. Boy winters coming quick this year.
    Last edited by Rob Keeble; 10-15-2009 at 05:48 PM.
    cheers

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Keeble View Post
    Ned think about maybe using Roxul http://www.roxul.com/residential/pro...tbatt%e2%84%a2
    I also made sure to seal the gaps using expanded foam (Great Stuff ) at HD http://building.dow.com/na/en/produc...y/pro13gun.htmand a Enjoy, i will be thinking of you when i am nice and toasty in my shop. Boy winters coming quick this year.
    Rob,
    thanks! I'll be checking into that tomorrow. I finished a project ahead of the rest of my team so my boss is comping me a day, so I get a whole day to play out in the weather and the shop...

    Darren,
    what's a 'win doe' that you speak of? Good tip, re the cleat. I'm all for that! Actually for the units for the house, I have the 'luxury' of not having trim around the windows yet, so I can screw right into the casings as needed, plus the shop doesn't Have windows, I'll be cutting holes to move air through out there.
    -Ned

  10. #10
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    Well,
    I've not been able to sleep tonight, so I've been doing a bit more research. Looks like I'm going to go with a slightly different approach/plan (not that I really had a firm plan in mind as of yesterday). I did a little more reading and found this plan which uses the wall itself with a couple of holes cut into the side wall (hey, it's only OSB folks, no gasping allowed). I'm 'lucky' in that the east and south walls haven't been insulated yet, and unlucky in that MOST of the southern wall is where my main Doors are. HOwever, I have a doorway framed in the southwest facing wall, which I can easily tear into if it means 'free' or nearly free heat for the shop for the winter. I will Happily seal up the two main doors for the winter and open up that other doorway.

    Reading the article I linked to above, the author describes getting a heat gain of 60* above ambient during the day and 10-15* above at night using what is termed a thermosyphon. The sun hits the absorbant materials (they use window screening, I'm thinking of landscape cloth (I have a roll handy, and if I need more it is bound to be cheap and on sale at this time of year)) the warm air rises, entering the building through a vent in the wall, drawing the cooler air in from the bottom of the collector through a similar vent. Once it gets going, the syphon effect drives itself. It can work in reverse as well, however, but simply closing off the top vents will stop cool air from going down the syphon drawing the warmth out of the building.

    I also have a bunch of that nice dark green tin roof left over. I bet if I built a frame around that, it would soak up the heat quite nicely, with some glazing over it and an air space behind it for the thermosyphon, it might work even better than the landscape cloth.

    Materials should be mostly what I have on hand, with the exception of the 'glazing'. I'm going to price some of the polycarbonate roof panels, IF they're not too expensive, I'll pick up enough to build collectors for around the doorway to the shop. If they're out of my price range, I'll opt for a double layer of simply 8 mil clear (opaque?) plastic. A different article suggests using that for economy's sake. I"m all for that right about now. The shop will get a 'test' version, if I get good results I may just retrofit the house with a larger, more polished version and hopefully cut down our heating bill.

    No matter what, I expect I'll be building the 'window' version as well for at least one bedroom which has an east/south face. I figure every btu I pump into the house for 'free' is one I don't have to pay National Grid for.

    OK my eyelids are slamming shut, quick email to my boss and I"m headed for bed for a few hours.

    C yas later.
    Last edited by Ned Bulken; 10-16-2009 at 08:54 AM.
    -Ned

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