Hi, on The Woodpecker this week, For my one hundredth episode I’m doing something special. I’m going to show all the steps I took to complete my new shop. I know it will be painful to listen to my bad accent again, for something you’ve already seen, but what can I say, I’m evil… The idea of building a shop like this came to me over twenty years ago, when I built my cottage. When I saw all the open space a timber frame construction produces and its tall ceiling, I told myself; one day I’ll have a shop like that. But like everybody else I had a mortgage to pay and kids to send to college. Ho by the way, as you can see, I had a real dog in the past; not a sample. I miss Spike so much… More than two years ago, I started to make plans for my shop, and since my dream was to have a timber frame shop, it’s what I drew up. I knew that building it would eat up all my time, so in January I started my dream in my old shop by making some medieval looking saw horses. Then I made all the frames for the windows. Then both front doors. When the snow started to melt, Renée started to move all our fire wood to have space to demolish our old garden shed. After tracing where the shop would end up, the excavator came and dug up the ward. With the help of my son and his friend, we made the foundation form. Then I was able to fill them with concrete. Next Renée and I made the walls’ forms. And they got filled up with concrete. After we removed the forms, I had a trench dug up to bring the electricity and water. Then I was able to lay down the drain around the foundation and back fill everything. But since the inside of the shop is full of sand, we had to dig up a little to install the dust collector pipes. Next, we covered up the pipes with the same sand, compacted it and put sheets of plastic on top.
We were able to lay down door cutouts to insulate our floor. After all the floor was covered with wire mesh, we poured the shop floor. Then I was able to start working on the wood structure. But since I knew I would have lots of big beams to lift, I began by building a crane. Finally I received all my wood. I could start to work on the wall structure. It’s around this time that I crushed my toe. I’m glad this was the only accident anyone suffered during the whole construction. But because of my broken toe, I had more help from different people. Then it was time to build the trusses. I started with the king posts. When I was done, I made all the mortises of the tie beams. For the rafters, I had help. This sped up the process. At this moment, some listeners came to help and we made all the rafters’ tenons. Then we just had to cut the top of each rafter, so it could fit with its king post. When all the structural pieces were done, we were able to install all the posts and lay the top plates on top. And finally the big day arrived. That day, seventeen people came to help us to raise the structure. After we installed all the purlins in place. I was still able to draw a crowd and together we nailed down the ceiling. Then, on the ceiling, we were able to build the roof structure. After passing all the necessary wires, the ceiling was insulated. The next day, with help again, we layed down all the plywood for the roof. After the roof’s membrane was down, Renée and I started to work on the metal roof. When the roof was finished, we started to work on the exterior wall structure. Then we made the window frames. And installed the windows and the front doors. Next we put in place the exterior pine planks. Now that we had closed the exterior walls, Renée could insulate the shop. Next I could screw the interior wall planks. Winter was coming, so we had to spread epoxy on the floor before it was too cold outside. Now that we have a nice floor, we can make the interior divisions. And also the mezzanine. After varnishing all the exposed beams, I was able to move all my tools in here. I’m so glad.
Having all my tools around me feels like heaven. But I’m not done yet; I need to cap the bottom of my walls. I had too much dust flying around so I installed the dust collector. But both interior doors are not done, so my first big project inside my shop is my doors. I spent the rest of the winter working on small things like: shelves and a mitre station. When spring arrived, I made and installed all the soffits. We also dug in front of both door entrances so we could make forms for concretes slabs, and poured them. Then I made a garage door for the shed section. And installed it in place. This puts an end to the construction of my new shop; I still have several other little things to do inside, but the building itself is finished. But I have one small regret about this endeavor; I should have kept a diary of everything I did. I know I have those videos but it’s not the same… I want to thank everyone who followed me in my adventure for my first one hundred episodes and I hope that we’ll see each other again for at least a hundred more on The Woodpecker.