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Thread: My new shop

  1. #1

    My new shop

    I've been in business 12 years. My first shop was 1600 sq/ft, I occupied it for almost six years. The current shop is 2500 sq/ft. As of a few days ago, I've been in here six years. When I first moved into the current space, I thought it would take a long time to fill it up. Turns out it only took about a year and a half to be full. At this point, it's a shoebox packed full of stuff. I can't fit any more equipment in here. Like nothing.

    Last summer I purchased 5.62 acres with the intent of building a shop that fall. Jumping through the massive amount of crap our wonderful government makes you do took time. A lot more time than I thought it would. (sounds like Mr. Stahl had it much worse off than I did though). Originally I was just going to have a regular draftsmen do the shop drawings. Turns out that doesn't work and it has to be done by a registered architect, and everything has to be signed off on by a structural engineer. Which I find kinda funny, because there's a zillion buildings almost exactly like mine that were built with slightly more than a sketch on napkin. The first firm I talked to wanted $17k to draw a box. There justification was they would design things like the trusses and stairs. No, you won't. The truss company will, and either myself or the carpenters will "design" the stairs. The second guy wanted $11k to draw a box. Nope, sorry. Not happening. My contractor found a guy, I got the stamped drawings, and engineering done for $3500. I can deal with paying somebody $100 an hour, but over $400 for something like that is robbery.

    I'm done venting.


    The bare lot:




    Equipment started showing up three weeks ago. We've had a very wet summer and some pain in the rear rain delays, but things are moving along.




    They started off scratching in the driveway.




    Then peeling off the black dirt, which was about 18" deep across the whole lot. Luckily I think I've got somebody lined up to buy the black dirt. I've got about one thousand yards to get rid of. At $1.50 a yard it's not worth much, but at least it's something. They weren't able to use the scraper much. The soil was too wet, and just too soft. Unfortunately that meant using a dozer and excavator to remove the black.




    2" minus going down for the base on the driveway. Thankfully they didn't have to move much soil to get down to clay.




    Footings were dug last Wednesday, or six days ago.




    Then poured on the following day.




    The block guys started the following day setting block.






    The excavator still has some of the parking lot to rough in. And a mountain of fill for that as well. Probably another 600 yards to bring that up to grade.




    Yesterday the concrete guys finished up laying block. This morning they core filled where necessary, and set their pins and straps. They insulated the foundation with 2" rigid foam on the inside, and backfilled and compacted. I'm pretty darn happy with the block work. It's straight and well done. My original plan was to do a poured wall with insulation in the middle and have that come 4' above grade then stack a 12' wall on top of that for a 16' ceiling height. It was going to be basically $40k more to go that route. Yikes.





    My current shop has all in floor heat running off of an electric boiler. I think that is the absolute best way to heat a cabinet shop and what I'll be doing here. The heat is even, you're not moving any air, and with off peak it is a very affordable source of heat. Unless you have access to natural gas, right now that can't be beat for cost per BTU.

    Walls will be 16', 2x8 stud framed, 16oc with every 4' being a double stud to carry the truss, and the exterior sheeted in 1/2" OSB. Trusses are 4' on center, with perlins to support the roof steel.

    Total dimensions are 60'x132', so a bit less than 8k sq/ft total. About 5500 of that will be used for production. The rest will be made up of mostly staging area. The office, restroom, and mechanical room will eat up about 300 sq/ft of that. Not having a place to put finished product is my largest bottleneck at the moment. When my shop is full of boxes, I'm SOL for doing anything other than finishing those up and getting them out the door. Which is a royal pain in the rear when for whatever reason you pound a job out ahead of schedule, and the house is behind schedule so you can't deliver for three weeks. It's been a major sore point for me for a few years. Plus I'll have room to load the trailer indoors in the winter. Which is a nice option when it's eighty degrees cooler outside than inside the shop. I'm not a fan of watching dollars in the form of heat roll out the door.

    I'm bringing in way more juice than I need right now. The long term plan is to double the size of the building, perhaps more, so I didn't want to skimp on the service initially. A few thousand spent now will save me a ton of money in the future. I'm bringing in 800 amps of 480V. Everything I can switch over, I will. Some stuff it's just not worth it. My widebelt is obnoxious as it chews up 155 amps on it's own on 208V, but it's too much of a hassle to swap it over to 480V. Long term I'd like to sell it and go to a triple head, that will certainly be on 480V. Everything I purchase from here on out will be on 480 as well.
    Last edited by Martin Wasner; 10-04-2016 at 3:03 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Huntington, Vermont
    Posts
    518
    Good on you, Martin. You are one determined guy, and it is always enlightening to read your posts. Good luck going forward.

    Have you considered powering the shop with solar?

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Jenness View Post
    Have you considered powering the shop with solar?
    I have actually thought about it. I've got 5.62 acres, I rezoned 1.62 for the shop. I kicked around the idea of turning the remaining 4 acres into a solar farm. Tough in Minnesota though. Winter is long and very dark. I have not looked into the actual cost though. Long term the current plan is to put up three houses on the far end opposite of the shop, then split up the remaining 3 acres into small commercial spaces. Either build them myself, then lease them, or sell them off. That is all a very long ways off. I am hanging my butt out much further than I'd like putting up this building. All free money is going to go into it for a bit, and I'm going to bleed my capital reserves much lower than I'd like.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    North -Eastern Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    202
    Congrats. I applaud anyone who takes a chance on growing their business. Its scary - been through something similar 5 years ago, and going from a working shop with no debt, to a new facility with new debt is both exciting and stressful. But what can you do.. if you decide to go in, why not go in all the way I think.

    Good luck in the build, and hopefully things stay on budget etc.
    Andrew J. Coholic

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bloomington, IL
    Posts
    5,294
    Outstanding. Take lots of pics of you radiant panel setup. How many loops and how many zones? Also are you spray foam insulating?

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Heidrick View Post
    Outstanding. Take lots of pics of you radiant panel setup. How many loops and how many zones? Also are you spray foam insulating?
    No idea how many loops. They typically run the pex pipe 2' on center I believe indoors. I could be wrong on that. There will likely only be two zones.

    I'd like to spray foam it. I'd like to do a skin of closed cell to act as the vapor barrier, then shoot the stud cavities full the rest of the way with open cell. I don't know if that will realistically be possible though just because of the cost. There's 6200 sq/ft of wall. Around here its about $1.00 per square foot, per inch of thickness. So 7-1/2" of foam will cost me about $45k. I may have them shoot a skin to seal everything up, then just do batted insulation for the rest. If the stud cavity is filled with fiberglass, I think I've got an R28 wall. For residential I think R19 is code. I'm also not certain on that. With foam, I believe its R6.5 per inch. I'd end up at an R rating of 48.75. That'd be pretty dang efficient to heat, and the building would be a tank structurally, but I can't swing that up front cost. I think the price of the fiberglass for the walls and whatever get's blown in the lid is something like $14k.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Charlotte NC
    Posts
    189
    We just bought a new house with the foam insulation and its amazing. You can climb into the attic in the summer and its maybe 5 deg hotter than the house. My electric bill was cut in 1/2 for same size house with the new insulation.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    41,053
    That's going to be a mighty fine new shop, Martin! Congrats! Love the drone photos, too...it adds a great perspective to the project and the size.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  9. #9
    Hello I was wondering how the new shop is coming along? and if its up yet.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Craig Weiss View Post
    Hello I was wondering how the new shop is coming along? and if its up yet.

    Sewer and water is in, and the first lumber load is on site. Just waiting for the weather to cooperate and the carpenters to get going. I'm hoping they'll get going on it tomorrow. They were supposed to start end of last week, but they got held up on another project.

    I'm guessing they'll do layout half of tomorrow, and hopefully get going on walls. I'd also guess nothing will get tipped up until next week. By the end of next week I'd think they'd be just about done setting trusses.

    That's all assuming they get started tomorrow. I really hope they do, our weather window is closing rapidly.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bloomington, IL
    Posts
    5,294
    Ill be hoping they start for you tomorrow. Best of luck!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada
    Posts
    2,019
    It must be very exciting! congratulations and best of luck with your new endeavor.

  13. #13
    Do NOT flash and batt the wall. Especially I'm Minnesota. You are asking for condensation issues.
    The foam has to be thick enough the keep the dew point out of the wall.

  14. #14
    Welp, framing is supposed to start today. Today is going to be semi miserable, the wind is whipping already, but tomorrow and the rest of the week looks phenomenal.

    I'm really hoping they can get the shell up in two weeks. I need to get the floor poured, and we're on borrowed time as far as winter setting in goes. Having to put heat to it before pouring concrete will be expensive

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bloomington, IL
    Posts
    5,294
    Wouldn't they just add calcium? You have your foam and pex ready to lay and know your loop placement?

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