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Thread: One Car Garage Shop Conversion Part I (The Floor)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Greater Toronto Area
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    One Car Garage Shop Conversion Part I (The Floor)

    (also see the thread http://familywoodworking.org/forums/...ead.php?t=1320 for Part 2)

    My shop is located in my one car garage where I had concerns in setting it up about working on concrete all day with my fairly flat feet, un-evenness of floor, coldness of floor, and creating more storage and a place to run electrical and duct collection I went the extra mile and built it in the following manner.

    My garage walls had heavily dinged drywall and I wanted to be able to affix anything anywhere so I covered them in that plywood stuff that looks like boards (can't remember what it's called, seen Norm A use it for outdoor shed walls). You need to run the belt sander over it though to soften the rough surface a bit before installing it.

    First for the floor I installed a 2" by (whatever was needed) ledger and kept it half an inch away all around from the floor.

    To keep away problems with condensation and allow any leaks from my sink damaging the underside of my floor, I placed a sheet of Dimplex Plastic (same stuff they place on the side of foundation walls underground) and laid on top a sheet of reflectofoil. Reflectofoil is like small bubble wrap with tin foil on both sided. For those (like myself at first) who think this reflectofoil stuff doesn't work, when I finished laying it down that minus 20 degree nite in January I was so tired I lied down on it and fell asleep only to awaken an hour later sweating because I was now overdressed for what the room had warmed up to. Both the Reflectofoil and Dimplex are tucked underneath the perimeter ledger and kept an inch or so away from the the actual side walls so as to allow your floor to breathe. (Many people, even like myself did, do not realize that concrete should be viewed as a big sponge. It's breathing all the time and any hydrostatic pressure on the other side of the concrete is slowly permeating thru it. If you slap 6 mil poly one side of it you are trapping the water from evaporating.)

    The rest as the photos show are essentially two "boxes" or "modules" as I refer to them that are fastened to the floor thru the dimplex and reflectofoil with tapcon screws and are laid out to create a perimeter channel around the shop to run dust collection piping and electrical BX cable to the gazillion electrical outlets I've run from my sub-panel. The perimeter Channel is wide anough to accomodate 2 four inch PVC runs and a whack load of BX electrical.

    Each of the two modules are assembled and fastened to the floor in a different manner. I wanted to avoid any visible screws on the top side as much as possible. One module, I used my pocket hole jig to fasten screws from the joists to the top plywood from the underside and then fastened the bottom base plate together and then tapconed the whole unit to the floor. You can't really see it in the photos but the joists that are the outer egde of each module over extend about 3/4 inch all around so as to be able to support a removeable cover that lays on the perimeter ledger also. So, that means all the joists are to be level with your level perimeter ledger. I cut a lot of bevelled and shimmed joists and ledgers to make my floor level on my bandsaw using a 3/4 inch blade which I must say was the trickiest and maybe most critical part to get good results overall.

    Insofar as how I went about differently with the second module, I fastened the botton of the module to the floor first and them srewed the shimed joist to it and then fastened the top to the joists countersinking the screws and covering them with wooden plugs. If I ever wanted to remove all of this because I sold the house and a new owner wanted to use it for a car, this module would be a dog to remove, but the first one could come off in minutes.

    Due to the concrete floor sloping from front to back and side to side by up to 5 1/2 inches over a 21 foot distance the joists required a variety of either 2 x 4's to 2X 8's.

    Each module also has removable lids that I can use to store lumber in. I polied the tops of the modules and their covers (sweeping is a breeze now) and I use those glass suction cup thingies to remove them when I want to get in them. Each opening of the storage compartment is reinforced with half inch square metal bar. Not sure if this was necessary but otherwise it would have been just the 3/4 inch plywood cover and with 500lbs machines rolling overtop, I wanted to make sure they would not sag or break.

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    Kevin
    Last edited by Frank Pellow; 01-01-2007 at 05:39 PM. Reason: spelling and punctuation

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    with the two modules, did you leave a gap between them, or do you have a cover over that space?
    -Ned

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    There are covers where needed. I left a half inch perimetres on each module so that I just insert covers where needed wanted

    For example the jointer which rolls underneath my mitre say, is actually covering up some of the insert covers.

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    Slide the jointer out of the way,

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    Remove inserts.

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    The permanently affixed modules perimeter's all over extend by about 3/4 inches further than the 3/4 inch plywood tops of the modules. The ledger around the entire shop is level with the tops of the said perimeter tops. Therefore you just need to cut to size whatever covers you want to fit wherever you want.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario, CANADA
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    2,332
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Dube View Post
    [I]
    ...
    My garage walls had heavily dinged drywall and I wanted to be able to affix anything anywhere so I covered them in that plywood stuff that looks like boards (can't remember what it's called, seen Norm A use it for outdoor shed walls). You need to run the belt sander over it though to soften the rough surface a bit before installing it.
    ...
    Kevin
    Kevin, is the plywood that I used for the doors in my shop:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    the stuff that you are talking about. It is nominal 3/4" plywood that cost $48 dollars (Canadian) a sheet at home depot when I bought it about 2.5 years ago.
    Cheers, Frank

  5. #5
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    elegant solution, put covers only where needed. very nice indeed!
    -Ned

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Pellow View Post
    Kevin, is the plywood that I used for the doors in my shop:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    the stuff that you are talking about. It is nominal 3/4" plywood that cost $48 dollars (Canadian) a sheet at home depot when I bought it about 2.5 years ago.
    Yes it is Frank. It's got a certain name, but I can't remember what it is. I know that a lot of people say to have your walls white to help project more light, but I felt they weren't too dark, my lighting was pretty good with 54 feet worth of fluorescent, and I like the look of the wood surface of the ply. With the grooving they look more like boards and not plywood and the seems between the different sheets isn't noticeable as it would be with regular type plywoods. At $48 a sheet it was the same price at the time as 3/4 birch ply at HD with the not so rough surface (can't recall the grade). It is only 5/8" thick which for this application was even better as the walls weren't perfect and the thinner ply would contour/fit better.

    Having these kind of walls not only allows being able to screw things wherever you want, but it became essential for some of the demands of how I went about setting things up.

    I don't think I would have been comfortable with my "above ground plywood storage rack" if I had just drywall over the studs. Holding 10 sheets of ply is quite heavy and needs to be fairly securely fastened. A couple of shots of the metal brackets which are fastened with lagbolts, some as long as 6 inches in some cases to get thru the 5/8 ply, drywall and ultimately a stup or joist. I would have died doing this if I didn't have an air impact gun.

    These are shots of some of the brackets for the Plywood Storage Rack. I wanted to show this as some may try this and not brace up as well. My overhaed and plywood rack I figure have held maybe about 2000 lbs or so. If it were to collapse while someone was underneath it...you'd be toast.

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    The Plywood Storage Rack is integrated into the overhead storage area. Here are some of the brackets for attaching that.

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    And also some of the fastening for the 2 X 6" 's for the overhead storage. I used them flat to maximize space. I know what some are going to say..."they're stronger positioned the other way". Absolutely true. Therefore on each of them they are butted one end to vertical ply using braces and the other to vertical ply and also each has 2 - 5 inch lags and 3 - 3 inch screws going into the butt end of a 2 x 6 that is lag bolted with big metal brackets into the ceiling. I also tested each one by swinging my 230 lbs on them like a monkey. They've been there loaded up for 2 years now and I have check marks to look for any kind of movement and nothings moved at all nor has been any cracks in the wood.

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    And also with the structure of the lathe/router outfeed table and router table mounts are affixed to the wall only, and not the floor using 2 X 6" supports at a 50 degree angle or so. This is to permit access to the perimeter channel where the DC duct work and electrical run thru. If I had run legs vertically to the ground to support these items, either I would have had to set up my below floor channels where I would normally be standing and have to hear the clomp clomp sound every time I walked on them, or all that stuff would have ended up on wheels and I wouldn't have succeded in using one tool for outfeed support for another and having their surfaces line up so well. Especially where the router is concerned. You're moving sometimes long pieces accross and if they hang off the ends and are not correctly supported, I figured it would cause problems.

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    As mentioned in the previous thread, I had run a belt sander over the plywood to smooth them out as I figured that the course surface would just be a hassle with dust from the woodworking being able to build up on them. With an 80 grit belt on, each one took less than a few minutes to smooth out.

    More stuff to come in regards to my shop....Kevin.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Shop - Mach Wall Access Panel and Diagonal Const. & Lathe 016.JPE   Shop - Mach Wall Access Panel and Diagonal Const. & Lathe 012.JPE   Shop - Mach Wall Access Panel and Diagonal Const. & Lathe 014.JPE  

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