Beefchicken Industries

My Workshop

A must have for me when shopping for a new house was the garage, or a workshop. I needed a place to keep my things, because they're not really small. The place we ended up buying has a 17' x 24' workshop set into the hillside beside the house. The top of the back wall of the workshop is at ground level, the bottom of the front wall is also at ground level. My workshop is concrete on 4 of the 6 sides.

Before I loaded all of my crap in to my workshop, this is what it looked like. There's various pieces of bed frame screwed to the walls and ceiling, and the north west corner is occupied by an 8 x 4 foot room constructed with an alarming variety of different kinds of screws, spray foam, random cuts of EPS foam, pieces of plywood, and cedar siding. It seems to have been constructed with the goal of creating a temperature controlled storage space within the workshop. Fearing that it would spontaneously combust or collapse, I removed that room shortly after moving in. The back wall was covered with a masonite wall, on top of which were built floor to ceiling shelves, which I reluctantly removed, anticipating future changes that they would be in the way of.

Although not visible, the north wall of the workshop had a string of draughty sliding plate glass windows installed near the ceiling, which I've since removed. Most of them will be replaced with glass blocks so that I still have some light coming in, without compromising on draughtiness or security. Right now they're boarded up with plywood. I've removed the garage door twice since moving in, which strangely coincides with the number of Linotypes in my workshop.

A "Before" photo of the previous windows hastily taken while doing some exploratory surgery.

The glass blocks that I was planning on installing were a bit too big to fit in the existing window openings, so they needed to be replaced. Given that the window frame was also holding up the roof, I had to take some precautions when replacing the window frames.

What follows are a couple photos of the new notched-out uprights being constructed.

I cut the front off of the uprights with my band saw, and re-attached it with wood screws. This allows me to remove the glass blocks if they ever get broken in the future, but more importantly, it gave me a way to get the glass blocks installed in the first place. Here's a photo I took while test-fitting the blocks.

The glass blocks are being graciously provided by my dad, who salvaged them from a demolition project a few years back. He has built an amazing greenhouse out of a pile of them, and I laid claim to a few more. We visited them just before I started this project, and I took back two blocks so that I could see if they were going to work in my garage. They did, and I ended up having to move my two very carefully from window to window while I test-fit everything. That strategy let me get all of the window openings prepared and trimmed out ahead of time, I put plywood blanking plates in the remaining windows in until I can go and pick up more blocks.

In the time between taking the photos above and taking the photos below, I stripped all of the shelves and masonite interior walls out, leaving me with bare concrete block walls. I did this with the two linotypes in place; I got very good and squirming around the machines while carefully tearing my garage apart around them.

Because of the stable climate it provides, the rear half of my workshop contains the machines that make up the printing division of Beefchicken Industries. Two Linotypes currently occupy the majority of the space, with a Chandler & Price press occupying the remainder.

The front half of my workshop is currently playing dual roles, as my woodworking area, and as a storage area for various household things. The front half is also home to a big drafty garage door that desperately needs to be replaced. I've since put in a wall between the halves of my workshop to keep the saw dust out of the printing machines. No photos of that area, as it's a bit of a disaster right now.

№35 © 2016 Beefchicken Industries