When Janet and I built our current home in 1996, we said that this was going to be
our last one. So, in light of that, I decided to build the shop I always wanted,
dictated by space and money. (I always need more of each). A shop in the basement
The basement was the only unfinished part of the house. I had the electrician run
a sub panel to it from the main unit and the stairs were in place when I started.
I laid it all out in drawings and sketches first, then started building. At the time,
I was working on the road out of state and coming home on the weekends. It took seven
months of every spare minute I had to get it done. Actually, the shop is like a project
car, it is never really done. It continually evolves. I did everything you see in
these photos myself with help from Janet. The floor is a two part epoxy, laid with
a roller in four coats. It is the same thing NASCAR shops use, which is where I
got the idea. The process is labor intensive and expensive, worse than prepping and
painting a car! Would I do it again? Maybe, maybe not, there are more user friendly
and less expensive products on the market now.
The refrigerator is for storing barley pops (beer) and displaying dash plaques. To
the right of the fridge is one of my favorite tools, a bead blaster, which I recently
replaced with a bigger model.
Although I have a power cord and air hose reel on the wall, I also have outlets all
around the wall. The main operating table (bench) , is bolted to the wall. I recently
installed a 1/4” steel plate to to the top and purchased a new larger vise. Looking
to the upper left you can see how I store spray cans. You just write the color on
the bottom with a magic marker and stack them like fire wood. However, you must be
very careful when pulling a can off the bottom or you will get to know all you cans
at once! TIP: Place a piece of tape on the can you are using, that keeps you from
grabbing a new full one.
Never enough storage space! That pile of Vair parts is 2 engines and some miscellaneous
Another good tool is the parts washer.
Inside the shop door is a good place to display decals. I mounted them on magnetic
material so I can easily rearrange them or clean the door.
After all these memories of working on Corvairs with no shelter, lying on the ground
in wet snow at night, using a table lamp as a drop cord, trying to fix the car and
get to work the next day, I think I have earned my shop. But it isn’t big enough.
!! I can only have two Corvair at a time with indoor storage.
Something else I always needed, but could not afford in my younger days is my roll
around tool box. I continually outgrow it. Also, I don’t roll it around much either,
it stays right where it is most of the time.