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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings All,


As some of you know I have spent a lot of time and energy over the past year to create a wheelchair accessible space where I can build things. In those twelve months great strides were made and I have been introduced to many individuals I look forward to working with over the coming months.

This past week Doug and I put our heads together and asked ourselves, "If we were to design my first shop, knowing now what we didn't know last year, what would it look like?"

Before I continue, humor me this. I have re-read some of my posts, and I laugh when I refer to my friend Doug. Heck, if I didn't know me, I'd wonder if I didn't have an imaginary friend. Doug is real and some here have even met him, so please chime in. A few years ago we first met in his driveway in front of a five ton gravel pile as he told me this idea he had for turning his back yard into a gathering place for live steamers and sparkies alike. He struck me as crazy to pull it off, so I signed on without an escape clause.

The two of us are as different as can be. He is tall, I'm short, he shovels gravel, I watch him work. He has many other interests and events in his life to keep him busy when not working in the garden, I am obsessed with building things for the garden, and we are in totally different tax brackets. He comes from the business/tech world while I am a more expressive, creative and thinking outside of the box kinda guy. He tends to surf the net while I like to post. Seemed like a perfect team to pull off our own "Field of Dreams" story. Build it and they will come.

Which brings us back to the list of shop requirements while dreaming big in the process:

1) Wheelchair accessible restroom
2) Why not ask for an accessible shower too, cause you never know
3) Store and heat food
4) Close enough to home so I can wheel to work and not burn petrol
5) No additional utility bills

Here is what we came up with, I want to go on record and say thank you to Karen, my girlfriend for supporting the final plan:

Building on-site here in our 800 sq ft apartment. Use the dining room wall next to the kitchen and place an 8' counter top \on two 28" base cabinets and secure everything to the wall. twenty-four hour access, problem solved.

Today Doug, his wife Elaine and I went to the Amherst Train Show in Springfield. I went to this show once in the late 80s, early 90s when it was one building, today it was four. I spent my day wheeling through the crowds, bunches of people watching, chatting with builders and admiring their wares; some might call it recon. We ended the day at the booth for Deerfield Valley Laser, where Doug fell in love with some On3 passenger cars and structures. (Doug has 45mm in his garden and Linoel in the basement where he sees an expansion as NG enters the house.) We looked at kits and selected a half dozen to adopt. He buys them, I build them, a match made in heaven.

Stay tuned... Coming this week, a counter along with a couple cabinets, a.k.a. Millshire Locomotive & Carriage Works

I can't wait to see it, can't wait to show you.
 

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Kent,

Great stuff - hope it works out.

I've re-used kitchen cabinets and counter tops as workshop space man times. My current worktop is a piece of kitchen formica countertop resting on the (expensive) chair rail moulding in the alcove at the bottom of the stairs!

Sorry we didn't see you at Cabin Fever.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
What a long strange week it's been. I gutted the living/dining room and a friend cleaned the carpets. Karen was in the hospital with an ulcer, giving me the first nights alone at home in four years. Doug and I go away often, about time I get to enjoy the house to myself.

It has been an enjoyable week, settling into my own groove, getting things ready for what comes next. And that dear friends was this evening. I met my imaginary friend Doug and our friend Dick at Home Depot about 7ish. My job was to arrive early and do some recon, gather intel and come up with a master list by the time they arrived.

It was easy going in, we have eight feet, supported by two base units. One can never have enough drawers, so we selected a three drawer unit eighteen inches wide. The other side of the shop got a twenty four inch wide cabinet with a drawer. Wooo Hooooo, that is four drawers, more than I have in my whole kitchen.

We meet back at my place to start unpacking and assembling base units until we get to the 18" 3 drawer unit, ours was missing two drawers! We come to a screeching hault and make sure Home Depot will still be open when Doug arrives to make the exchange; because we have one night to make this happen. Off Doug goes to Hyannis and Dick and I finish building what we can as we wait for Doug.

When Doug returns we built the cabinet and rest the countertop across to get an idea. Wow, it sure looks good. Our party ended just after 9:30 as Doug and Dick returned home. I however got to assemble three drawers and imagine what Millshire might look like when completed.

Please keep in mind what you are about to see is a rough draft. cabinets on the floor, counter resting across, and the drawer and cabinet faces are balanced so we can get a taste. I still have to choose drawer and door pulls before we continue. Not to mention finding a way to protect the carpet.

Until then, here is the first glimpse of the Millshire Locomotive & Carriage Works.


Enough room for Doug and I to work side by side building the Aster F9. The best part is the shop is ten feet away from an accessible bathrrom with shower and has an attached kitchen. Retirement is going to be GRAND!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'm too excited to sleep, I'll putz around the shop for a little while longer. Now I have a printer/scanner and want to create a cradle to hold my wireless KB on the inside right, two dowels secured to the base cabinet should do it.

Phase two includes a lowered wall mounted cabinet and two shelves. Also with phase two is a magic tarp secured to the bottom shelf and covers the main work bench should there be a work in progress when company arrives.

Here is picture #2, wireless internet included.




And this is a close up of the right base unit where an easy keyboard bracket could be made.



Keep in mind this is a work in progress. At this moment we'll pause to catch our breath. Feel free to offer comments, suggestions or ...
And for the bean counters out there, we are still under four hundred beans.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Pete, I'm sorry I missed CF also. My dream is to attend next year as a first stop on the way to DH. I have eleven months to build, bake, beg, borrow and steal in order to make it happpen.

This afternoon Doug and I met at Home Depot to purchase a few more items for the shop. We picked up a light, wall cabinet, electrical cords and pieces to make a shelf unit. The toal bean count is hovering around $560.

Doug has a plethora of structure kits to be built, and he is trusting me with them. I know he won't be disapointed, especially when they get hit with a dab of weathering mojo.

So, here is the latest picture of the Millshire Works. Eight feet of wheelchair accessible creative bliss.

Thank you Doug.

I am having difficulty uploading the latest photos. I will post this for now and hope to update shortly.
 

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