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Here's My Workshop!

By Jim Brown
Old Forge, NY

Click on any picture to see a larger version.

My wood shop is located in Old Forge NY. Approximate dimensions are 28 feet wide by 24 feet deep.

Below is the view of the shop when you first walk in. All walls are covered with plywood to allow easy installation of shelves and hangars. My Sawstop Cabinet Saw is my most recent addition… and I feel much safer ripping stock now. The view also shows my Band Saw, Drill Press, various sanders and scroll saw. Ceilings are 10 feet high and allow me to easily swing tall stock around and also accommodates shelves for routers and jigs.

This view shows my overhead dust collector and my shelf system. I’m always trying to think up ways to use my space in the most efficient manner. The shelves allow me to not only store items… but the angled fronts have two purposes. Items cannot fall out of the shelves and any type of clamp can easily be hung on the angled fronts for quick access.

This picture has a view of my lathe that has a purpose built storage box made of 6/4 Read Oak. I built the box in a wedged fashion around the two factory ledges on the legs. This allows me to use a 2 ton car jack to lift one end of the lathe and slip a Heavy Duty four caster furniture dolly underneath for easy movement of a 630lb lathe too heavy for any mobile base.

When I first started framing the wood shop I decided that I needed an upstairs to store wood and other items. I knew that a traditional set of stairs would have a large footprint wasting valuable shop space. Flimsy fold down attic stairs would not be an option either due to their cumbersome nature when handling large objects. My solution was to design a set of stairs with counter weights hidden from view to allow sturdy stairs with built in hand rails that can be easily lifted out of the way with one finger. This shot also shows my electric hoist connected to an old rail system acquired from an industrial laundry business. The rail is curved and holds up to 1200 pounds. I can easily load or unload any heavy equipment by backing up my truck and using the curve of the rail to easily center the hoist over the truck bed.

Below is a view of the stairs in the “lowered” position. The triangular base at the bottom of the stairs swivels via gravity to allow smaller risers on the steps. The Wood shop’s Garage door is a “Roll-Up” allowing maximum space for the stairs and allows the overhead lights to remain exposed while door is open.

This is the attic of the shop used for wood storage and other items.

This is the left side of the shop that I just added last fall. It houses my Planer, Jointers, grinders and a chop saw. I put the chop saw on my Radial arm to save space due to the radial not being used very often.

Just another angle of the addition showing my dust collector and smaller jointer.

Below are several of my projects that I have done. The first is Mission style "Fern Table" made of Qtr. Sawn White Oak with legs that have tapers on all four sides.

Mission Style Night Stand made of Cherry with “through tenons” and dovetail drawers.

Mission style “Bow Arm Morris” and Desk made of Red Oak. The arms of the Morris chair are a 4-ply lamination glued with marine grade epoxy.

Mission Night stand made of Qtr. Sawn White Oak

Mission Coat Tree made of Qtr. Sawn White Oak

Bowls made of Indian Rosewood.

Mission Chest of Drawers made from Qtr Sawn Red Oak

Here are some pictures of a Child’s Sleigh and Toboggan I made. One of the things I’ve always wanted to learn is the art of steam bending wood. I have experimented over the last two years and I finally have the hang of it. The Sleigh was donated to a Charity Auctiion and raised 400.00 for the event. The Toboggan is designed for Children and is 4’6” in length and 17.5” wide. I designed it so it can fit inside of most passenger vehicles.

Below is a Morris Chair that I made:

My passion for woodworking was inspired at an early age. My biggest inspiration was due to my Father teaching me to work with wood and carpentry building his camp in the Adirondacks in 1964. My Dad never seemed intimidated by any project no matter how big. I used that inspiration to build our own Camp and Wood Shop in the Adirondacks 35 years later. Nine years worth of weekends my wonderful Wife and I created a home from a treed lot.

My other inspiration was the artistic ability of My Mom and her ability to use form and color to create any Craft she desired.

My Uncle Charlie Brown really opened my eyes to Woodworking. My Uncle is a Master Craftsman and if I ever reach half of his Woodworking ability I will be lucky.

And last but not least… I would have to give credit to my Wife. She is without a doubt one of the fussiest interior decorators on the planet. Most of my creations are confiscated by her. And that… is my greatest compliment.




If you have any questions feel free to email Jim at brossi@juno.com

Want to see more shops? Check out our Shops Gallery, featuring many of the shops that we have featured in previous editions of Wood News.

Would you like for your shop to appear in this column? We invite you to SEND US PHOTOS of your woodworking shop along with captions and a brief history and description of your woodworking. (Email photos at 800x600 resolution.) Receive a $50 store credit redeemable towards merchandise if we show your shop in a future issue.

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