Highland Woodworking Wood News Online, No. 175, March 2020Welcome to Highland Woodworking - Fine Tools & Education Learn more about Highland Woodworking View our current woodworking classes and seminars Woodworking articles and solutions Subscribe to Wood News
Here's My Workshop!
By Alan Noel
Atlanta, GA


When I started my woodworking shop way back in the early '80s, I had moved on from the music business (Rock Star Wannabe), and I rented a small studio with a single-car garage that had been enclosed and measured about 200 sq. ft. It had a concrete floor full of cracks, no heat, no water, no insulation and had one socket and one light bulb overhead, but at least it had a big window which gave me light! Also, the space was quite damp all of the time. However, I had no idea that I would be in the furniture restoration business for 35 years, given this was my starting point.

After a few months, I managed to find a basement in a commercial building that was 1500 sq. ft. that also had humidity problems, but thankfully I had a friend who knew how to remedy this, which in turn, made the landlord very happy, to say the least! By now, I was in full swing, had quit my full-time job and dove into antique finishing full-time, courtesy of a small loan, a lot of heartburn, and many sleepless nights. Fortunately for me, the antique business was exploding and I was in the right time and place to prosper. I wound up buying that 1500 sq. ft. property and staying there for about 27 years.

My next move came in 2008 when a very good friend came to the shop (this friend had, coincidentally, been my very first customer) to use my bandsaw. He used the bandsaw a lot, actually. This particular day, he said he wanted me to see an empty space down the street that he owned. Seems he was tired of stepping over or moving things out of the way in order to use the bandsaw, and had decided that I needed a new "spot" to work in that had plenty of room for the bandsaw and other equipment.

We walked into the front door of the property (approximately 2000 sq. ft. - not bad). Then, we went into the back room where there were two more rooms with a total of 6000 sq. ft. There was no way I needed that much space, because being a finishing shop and not a cabinet shop I didn't need as much equipment since finishing and restoration is mostly hand work. But he gave me such a good deal, I had to give it a go. Actually, having this much space was, for the most part, a dream come true.

Fast forward 8 very successful years and still not being able to find my "stuff" I decided to retire, sell the business and live happily ever after.....except...my client base didn't see it that way. The phone began to ring (and continues to ring), so I built a very small shop in my backyard. I still have one room to be closed in and then it will be complete.






Although I can now find all of my "stuff," based on past experience, I don't expect that to last long since I now have about 500 sq. ft. of luxurious, air-conditioned and heated space with no humidity problems and yes, the bandsaw is still with me.



Alan can be reached directly via email c/o Alan Noel Furniture Refinishing at alannoel@comcast.net.

Visiting Atlanta? Attend one of Alan's upcoming highly informative Highland Woodworking wood finishing seminars:

March 18, 2020  Finishing the Finish
March 21, 2020  Finishing 101
April 1, 2020  Coloring Wood
April 8, 2020  French Polish Workshop
Return to the Wood News Online front page


 

Shop Submissions

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.

Click here to submit
your shop


Shop Gallery

Want to see more shops? Check out our
Shops Gallery


Click the images below to visit some of our most popular tool departments







Finishing
 
Books
 
  Clearance
 
Festool
 
Planes
 
Sharpening
 
Wood Turning 
 
MONTHLY NEWSLETTER
ARCHIVE
SUBSCRIBE TO
OUR NEWSLETTER
    WATCH HIGHLAND'S FREE
    ONLINE TV SHOW
VISIT HIGHLAND'S FULL
ONLINE TOOL CATALOG
Highland Woodworking Social Media Take a look at the Highland Woodworking Facebook Page Check out the Highland Woodworking Twitter Page View the Highland Woodworking YouTube Channel Pin from the Highland Woodworking Pinterest Page Connect with the Highland Woodworking Instagram Page Read the Highland Woodworking Blog

Highland Woodworking
1045 N. Highland Ave. NE
Atlanta, Georgia 30306
Tel. 800-241-6748

Email us at email@highlandwoodworking.com
Visit us on the web at www.highlandwoodworking.com


Copyright © 2020 Highland Hardware, Inc.

Errors regarding pricing and specifications are subject to correction.
SOME SALE QUANTITIES MAY SELL OUT and become unavailable at the advertised price.