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Here's My Workshop!

By Robert Schweiger
Satellite Beach, FL

Click on any picture to see a larger version.

Here is my "Retirement Shop." Like everything else it has been downsized from a basement shop in Atlanta that measured 2500 sq. ft. to its new home of approximately 850 sq. ft. in Central Florida. The only machine that I am lacking is my old lathe because of its size, but I do have a vertical closet (not shown in the pictures) that stores my scroll saw, Tormek grinder, mortising machine, oscillating sander and bench grinder, all mounted on boards for easy movement to my workbench top. Also not readily visible in the photos are a Performax 16-32 belt sander, a Delta 12" planer, a 4' X 8' vacuum veneer system, a Legacy Ornamental Milling System, a refrigerator, a TV and two computers. There are two JDS ceiling mounted air purifiers and each floor machine has its own shop vacuum. The space itself is actually a converted bedroom and entertainment room that I connected with French doors. Fortunately, the floor under the Delta table saw was originally reinforced to support the weight of a pool table.

There is a very picturesque view of the pool and pond behind the house but, as one can see, there is one big drawback in that the shop is located on the second floor of our home. Bringing lumber up and returning some of the larger projects to ground level can be quite a job, but the exercise is beneficial. The recent addition of a homemade spray booth which vents outside was all that I needed to complete this fully functional "Retirement Shop."

I am a woodworking amateur but have been at it for more than 25 years. I like to design and build furniture as evidenced by the pictures of a serving cart, the bathroom vanity and the round lamp table. I have also created numerous small items including jewelry boxes and cremation urns. A lot of my work is for my church on a purely voluntary and gratuitous basis. Included in this category is the serving cart, the step stools (for little ones to reach the clean-up sinks), the flower stands and the oak table to hold Bibles and bulletins.

My preferred wood to work with by far is Eastern Black Walnut and many of my fancier projects were made from a walnut tree trunk that I bought many years ago. It had been stored in pieces in someone's crawl space for more than 20 years and it was full of crotch wood and intriguing grain patterns. I wish I could find a source like that again as obtaining quality black walnut in Florida is not very easy.

Here are a few projects I've done:

Church Step Stools
Collection Box
Cremation Urns
Jewelry Box
Serving Cart
Lamp Table
Bedroom Bench
Walnut Shadow Box and Clock
Church Flower Holders
Church Table

If you have any comments or questions feel free to email Robert at .

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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