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Thread: Some advice, if you please

  1. #1
    Chris Hatfield is offline Former Member (by the member's request)
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    Some advice, if you please

    I built a version of the Ultimate Tool Stand in the fall, with the intent that I could use it as a multipurpose station - miter saw, planer stand, crosscut table, sanding table, clamping table and storage.

    That was the plan, until I finally took the miter saw off of it's old table and tried to put it on the UTS. My upper boxes weren't level. The ends were higher than the middle. I didn't think to check if this was the fault of the boxes or the base, but I think it might be a problem with the base. It sagged badly before I put a new set of casters on, and I think there's some residual to it. I made the torsion box poorly (the MDF split everywhere when I tried to put it together) and I don't think I can trust any of it for my table build.

    Being small of stature, my shop needs good storage and use space. I thought this would be the ticket, but it hasn't turned out to be that way. Partly because the spot where the planer would sit is too narrow for when the beds are extended. Which is why for the last few months when I needed to use the planer, I put it back on it's stand - which in turn takes up even more room to store. I won't get into the weight of lifting the planer, because I'm not sure I can get around that.

    I'm just not sure what to do at this point. I need something that I can wheel to the middle of the shop, or out onto the future deck to run long boards through the planer. Where the UTS is right now, I have about 1.5' before I hit the wall, and I have to move stuff out of the way to get it out into a usable space.

    One alternative would be to make a full counter along one wall, with my miter saw in the middle of it. 6' clearance on either side of it would be plenty. I might could try taking the tables off of the planer. I could also try the flip-top planer cart again, although it was very unbalanced before. I could try separate carts for both with flip up extensions. I suppose I could keep the planer on a low mobile cart and tuck it under a counter top (has anyone done this? How does your back respond?).

    I'd be open to any ideas you have. I had also thought about making a clone Tool Dock system, but I think that might not be great on the back either. I'm hoping I get an oscillating sander for Christmas, so I'll have to factor that in as well.

  2. #2
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    Chris how about adding a picture of the unit you already built. It would help.
    cheers

  3. #3
    Chris Hatfield is offline Former Member (by the member's request)
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    No pics of mine, but this was the plan:

    http://christophermerrill.net/ww/pla...l_Stand_1.html

  4. #4
    Chris Hatfield is offline Former Member (by the member's request)
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    What I've been trying to sketch out tonight is a wall of floor cabinets. I would have the miter saw in the middle on a subset shelf, and have removable fences that screw into the countertop. Under the miter saw might sit the planer on a short cart. The sander and eventually jointer would sit on short carts at either end.

    Still drawing it out though. If I was any good at Sketchup, I'd share it.

  5. #5
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    Chris, post your SKP files and there a a number of folks who can help.
    "Thereís a lot of work being done today that doesnít have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesnít have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  6. #6
    Chris Hatfield is offline Former Member (by the member's request)
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    No, no. I mean I can barely draw a box. Normally I'm very good at computer programs, but this one frustrates me so.

    Perhaps I'll stick to the pad and paper and take a pic.

  7. #7
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    if your budget allows, Id suggest a lift table for a 100lb machine like the planer. You can roll it under the mitre saw when not in use, and pump it to working height whenever you need it.
    I cannot lift 100 lb machines that I use often and this was a great solution for me.

  8. #8
    Chris Hatfield is offline Former Member (by the member's request)
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    I'll have to look into it. Does it fit a budget of zero? :crossfingers:

    I did come up with a couple more possible solutions last night. My main problem is figuring out where I want stuff. Printing out some graph paper now.

  9. #9
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    The stand's torsion box base is pretty much the controlling factor for other components to line up. Rather than a total re-build maybe you could save it(?) If your cabinet boxes are square and well dimensioned, they may work well on a good base. You could remove them and stand them on a flat section of floor as a test.

    I'm just trying to save you some re-work. Several of my early attempts were beyond salvage and ended up on the burn pile. The units are gone but what I learned from them helped me in going forward so they were not a total loss.

    My fliptop stand is still in use and is one of the best space savers I have come across. Mine used to hold my planer and CMS but now holds a planer and a sander. Soon I think it will be 2 sanders as the smaller planer is not getting used much lately. Maybe a pair of smaller units that could couple together would be easier to move around(?). The rolling worktable shown has tons of storage and 3 vise positions (vise not shown). All my mobile stations share a common height with my fixed machines so they can enhance each other to some extent.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails fliptop-2009 another planer view.jpg   fliptop-2009 flipping.jpg   7-rolling-table.jpg  
    Last edited by glenn bradley; 12-17-2010 at 02:10 PM.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  10. #10
    Chris Hatfield is offline Former Member (by the member's request)
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    Your advice is most appreciated. I still need to go outside and see if the regular surface is flat. It could be a problem with the top boxes.

    My problem is that I'm fickle. I always think how things can be done differently or better, and it's proving costly. I thought that having a big portable stand would be a good thing, but it's been relegated to stationary duty for now. It's too big to try and get outside some days, and that's due to just the size of it. I had wanted to build this thing for awhile, and now that I have I've found it's not working like I want it to. I think perhaps it's best in a garage setting with a little more room to work with, and not having to rely on it as a work table too. The MDF isn't holding up like I expected it to either. I accidentally dropped one of the top boxes and it got a huge chunk eaten out of it.

    I dd like the concept of the flip-top carts. I took a different approach and only had one tool on it, so it made flipping it more work than lifting it. I wanted to be able to tuck it up under something to maximize floor space. My construction wasn't the best, either.

    At this current moment, I really like the idea of making a cabinet wall. That might change in ten minutes, though.

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