Kevin Mark Klughart
PhD, PE, JD, MIP, LLM
Patent Attorney / Engineer
As with all hobbyists, my shop is generally a mess, but the following pictures will give you an idea of the setup. I've taken over a good bit of the garage with my stuff, but my wife is long suffering and has both put up with a lot of inconvenience as well as supported much of the renovation to improve the garage clutter.
Key improvements in the garage include the incorporation of a Lozier commercial shelving system, with some twists. Generally speaking, Lozier shelving requires floor-mounted pedestal posts into which the shelving locks. These pedestal posts are about 3-inches wide and don't lend themselves to wall mounting. My solution was to pick up some pedestal posts from salvage and remove the spot-welded sheet metal connecting the front and rear mounting bracket rails. Once the rails were removed, the paint was removed, they were primed, and then mounted to cross-bar channel that was lag-bolted to the wall studs at 16-inch intervals. This all was done after the garage was given a new coat of paint and prepared for the makeover.
After mounting to the walls, the electrical system of the garage was improved by installing outlets every 4-feet or so along all walls, including support for switched 240V service to support things like a drill press, FCB machine, and icemaker. Along the top of the shelf mounting rails (just below the ceiling) I ran 1-inch galvanized pipe for compressed air distribution. Provisions for a dozen or so drop-downs were provided for in the design, along with graded pipe to ensure proper condensate water flow within the system.
Placement of toolboxes in the garage was dictated by space availability for automobiles. However, it must be noted that three of the toolboxes were bolted to the railing system on the wall to ensure that there was no possibility of toolbox tipover should multiple drawers be extended at the same time.
Lathe and Related Infrastructure
The real work centered around a 7x12 foot area in the back of the garage that was to contain an 18x40 JET lathe. More on the JET lathe here. This required that all the compressed air and electrical be completed BEFORE installation because there was no access to the walls after this 3-ton machine was slid into place. The electrical included a 10HP VFD to provide three phase power for the lathe, as well as shelving, compressed air plumbing, and miscellaneous other stuff, including a fluorescent lighting system incorporating 12 fixtures that are automatically triggered on opening of the garage door (I've never seen anything like this in any other house, and still think it is the neatest safety feature when coming home to the house).
One significant feature of the shop is that EVERY piece of equipment is designed to be moved by pallet jack, including the lathe. Pictures will follow, but the general principle is to jack up every piece of gear about 4-inches by placing it on some wide-flange I-beams. After this is done two 3-inch I-beams are bolted/welded to these riser I-beams at 90-degree angles, providing a platform on which a pallet jack may raise the entire piece of equipment for movement. In a space limited environment such as a garage, you often need to move gear outside to work with it and the pallet jack is perfect for this application.
I finally got around to painting the garage floor with epoxy paint one summer. It was a good deal of work but has been wonderful with respect to keeping the floors clean (they can be blown out by compressed air using one of the air stations set around the garage), and oil cleanup is much easier now. I recommend Sherwin-Williams (www.sherwin-williams.com) TILE-CLAD EPOXY COATING for this purpose. It is pricier than the consumer products you may find later, but it really takes a beating. While this paint may be colored to your specifications, I've found that SCREEN GREY SW7071 is a good compromise between hiding dirt and providing good shop illumination. Generally speaking, you mix A and B parts together, wait 30 minutes or so, mix in a reducer of about 10-20%, and then apply. Key to proper application is degreasing of the surface followed by etching with Muriatic acid (HCl), blowing off the residue, and waiting for it to dry fully before application. I would also recommend sanding slick spots and/or using a wire wheel to remove lose concrete around the walls. Cracks should be filled before application. This process is SO much easier if done when the floor is first poured, but well worth the additional effort for any garage. I don't know how we lived without it!
Kevin Mark Klughart
Registered Patent Attorney, USPTO
3825 Leisure Lane, Denton, TX 76210-5589
tel: 800-353-1211 / 940-320-0580 - fax 940-320-0581