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Old 11-11-2012, 03:44 PM   #1
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Creating a working space


Hello all!
I would like to make my husband a working space in our home. We are renting a town home without a garage so our options are sort of limited. We do have a basement with a laundry room that is not finished and that is where our primary working space will be.
Here are the dimensions:
The bench you see is 45" high x 23 1/2" wide x 48" long. The overall space available in the laundry room is (for the working space for the hubby) 58" x 88". We also have a water meter with the pipes that stick out from the opposite wall 13" and takes up 16" of wall space. There is about 34" to the wall from the end of the bench.
There is also a room in the basement (it's really one room) that is 10 ft by 12 ft and has carpeting.
He doesn't do a lot of things currently, but he needs a little space to do something. (speaking of which, if you have suggestions for projects that can be done in a small space, I'm all ears! I'm looking for the super simple to the fairly complex).
So here is what I'm looking to do:
  • Working area: create a nice-looking working space that is also functional for him.
  • Room: I'm willing to allow him to use this area for working, it just has two requirements: a way to keep the area clean while he's working (thinking something like some sort of plastic or tarp to put down) and something that can be fairly easily moved out of the way in the event that I want to use the area.
So I would GREATLY appreciate any help you guys can offer! Remember, we're renting so no permenant changes (although holes in the wall are permissible).
Thanks!
If you need pix, let me know and I can perhaps email them as the attachment function doesn't seem to be working.

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Old 11-11-2012, 09:11 PM   #2
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Creating a working space


What type of things would he want to do?
Perhaps fold down moveable equipment in the garage may be better?

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Old 11-12-2012, 06:56 AM   #3
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Creating a working space


Quote:
Originally Posted by helpinggirl View Post
Hello all!
I would like to make my husband a working space in our home. We are renting a town home without a garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by mae-ling View Post
What type of things would he want to do?
Perhaps fold down moveable equipment in the garage may be better?
Garage????
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Old 11-12-2012, 11:47 AM   #4
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Creating a working space


Mae-ling is right. If you want this space to be at all functional, your first step should be to analyze what he wants to do in the space. What are his hobbies? Does he need a lot of counter space, or is storage space more important? What size storage? Etc. etc.
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Old 11-12-2012, 04:28 PM   #5
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Creating a working space


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What type of things would he want to do?
Exactly, a woodworker needs a rather different setup than a jeweler.

But, in general, putting stationary power tools on "flip" carts with wheels can help maximize space utilization. The top of the cart pivots so you can swing either tool up into position and the other hangs upside down out of the way.

You can also build a "work center" out of 2x4s with work surfaces and shelves/drawers/pegboard/etc and then scoot it up against a wall and screw it into the wall to keep it from tipping over.

The carpeting is tough. I'd lay down some heavy mil plastic (painter's drop sheets or vapor barrier) over it, sealing the seams with tape, then two layers of thin plywood, OSB, or MDF, staggering the seams, and then some cheap vinyl flooring. Allow the plastic and vinyl edges to climb the wall a few inches to form a "bathtub" to contain spills. Not sure if the carpet will be crushed and ruined by this after a few years, so perhaps a better choice would be to pull the carpeting up and store it elsewhere so it can be laid back down when you move out.

If he's doing something messy in the laundry room, a series of rods and shower curtains can help keep splatters off your washer and dryer. If he's doing woodworking, get a really good dust collection system.
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Old 11-12-2012, 09:32 PM   #6
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Creating a working space


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Garage????
She mentioned a garage - better space usually then small basement room.
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Old 11-13-2012, 05:28 AM   #7
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Creating a working space


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She mentioned a garage - better space usually then small basement room.
Uhh, OK, I guess I must have misread where she said they do not have a garage.
My Bad.
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Old 11-13-2012, 09:37 AM   #8
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Creating a working space


Dan - Ah crude just reread for the 3rd time and you are right. No garage.
1st project ... build a nice big shed!
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Old 11-14-2012, 06:39 PM   #9
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Creating a working space


As you have noticed, I don't have a garage and we really don't have enough space for a shed. We'd build a shed, but we're renting and don't want to build a shed when we won't be here more than a couple years at most. But I appreciate people answering!
But tylernt, thanks for the ideas! We might do something like that.
As for what he'll be doing, we're not sure yet. He's trying to find a hobby that he can do in our limited space. He doesn't know what hobby to get into, but I was hoping that if I was able to make this space more workable, he might get into something. I realize this is a very difficult question to answer so I appreciate the answers!
If anyone has any ideas for simple, as minimal mess as possible, hobbies, I'd greatly appreciate it! Thanks!
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Old 11-14-2012, 07:51 PM   #10
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Creating a working space


Making jewelry is an option. And potentially profitable. Depending on what you're doing you might need a micro-torch and some ventilation, but otherwise is pretty clean. Lapidary might throw a little dust, not bad.

There's modeling. Cars, boats, planes. There's the "just to look pretty" variety and also the R/C (remote controlled) type.

Modern woodworking takes a lot of power tools and makes a lot of dust, but some folks like to go old school with hand saws and hand planes and hammer and chisels etc. Traditional woodworking (no power tools except maybe a drill) might be a good fit for the space. And there are a few power tools, like a scroll saw, that are fun to use and don't fling a lot of dust.

Electronic hobbies are very clean and compact. An Arduino is a good place to start. You can make all sorts of cool things with those -- that's one of my own favorites, actually. Electronics on its own can be daunting, but Arduino makes it easy to get started doing some surprisingly complex things.
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Old 11-14-2012, 08:18 PM   #11
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Creating a working space


i vote for Electronics as well, this world is run by electronics these days.

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