Moving experience

How to get a step nearer to furniture-maker's heaven with a new workshop

Get a divorce, leave your job, even change your bank, but don't move your workshop.

Of course I can only offer this advice after the event, and few people learn from the mistakes of others...

Having decided to move house, and finding another with a potentially much nicer workshop, I set about the project with a star in my eye. I even managed to persuade senior management that the first priority was to establish the new workshop properly before starting on the house improvements and new furniture.

"Saying goodbye to all those off-cuts which had been kept just in case"

Packing up

Packing up was full of emotion -saying goodbye to all those off-cuts which had been kept just in case...the awful piles of ageing dust, dirt and encrusted cobwebs.. .the happy reunions with long-lost small tools.

Cradles had to be constructed to enable cast-iron machines to be manoeuvred up the stairs to my new first floor workshop - in all several weeks of hard labour, with time to focus on the improvements to be incorporated at the new location.

I had been in the old workshop - a modern double garage, warm and dry but lacking adequate natural light -for ten years. Of course it wasn't big enough, but no workshop ever is.

I started my business there and the layout 'growed like Topsy' with me, and was due for a face lift.

■ 'J v |

above left: Right, said Fred... planer in cradle -not to be carried by its tables)

left: Out with the old - after ten years, Kevin Ley is leaving all this above left: Right, said Fred... planer in cradle -not to be carried by its tables)

left: Out with the old - after ten years, Kevin Ley is leaving all this

I wanted a nicer, safer, healthier, more efficient working environment, with more light, heat, ventilation, storage and working area and less dust, moisture and clutter, with pleasing decoration and proper fire, security, health and medical precautions.

Not much to ask.

Lighting

The new workshop is the upper floor of a modern, two storey 20ft by 20ft double garage. It is of block construction with a sound floor supported by an RSI, and a good sized window at each end. Power and water were connected.

TOP! Splendid new workshop, outside...

RIGHT:... and in. How long will it look like this!

TOP! Splendid new workshop, outside...

RIGHT:... and in. How long will it look like this!

The ceiling annoyingly slopes into the room, but a small loft is usable.

The windows provide good natural light and ventilation but good artificial light is also a must, so I installed a mix of general fluorescent tube lighting - with daylight tubes - and dedicated spot lights for specific areas.

I prefer a number of adjustable spot lights, fixed in the correct place, to portable lights moved around as required. They are safer and leave the bench and power points clear. Of course portable spots are still required occasionally.

Insulation

The solid walls needed insulation and a vapour barrier. British Gypsum's technical department told me about a plasterboard which has insulation bonded to its back and an integral vapour barrier, which can be glued directly on to the existing wail with a special adhesive.

I discussed costs and insulation values with my builder's merchant.

Clear installation and finishing instructions are available and it was very simple to fit and finish the board to a high standard, providing heat, sound and moisture insulation plus a smooth finish all in one go - well worth it.

The ceiling was also insulated with rolls of 100mm fibreglass.

These forms of insulation are particularly good in intermittently-heated buildings, and for controlling condensation, because they are on the inside of the wall, closest to the heat source.

Draught-proofing was also installed.

"Triggering either alarm sets off both to give warning of impending doom at that location"

De humidifier, heat

I installed an Ebac domestic model dehumidifier to keep conditions suitable for working in solid wood. I don't use it during the day when I am in and out and the air is changing, but I do find that it makes a useful difference if left on while the workshop is closed down overnight and at - some - weekends.

For heat I like to burn workshop waste; this is cheap and environmentally friendly provided a clean-burn system is used, but it must be done safely in a properly designed, efficient stove.

How To Sell Furniture

How To Sell Furniture

Types Of Furniture To Sell. There are many types of products you can sell. You just need to determine who your target market is and what specific item they want. Or you could sell a couple different ones in a package deal.

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