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-   -   Settin' up shop... Need advice! (http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=845139)

GearHeadGrrrl 11-30-2012 07:08 PM

Settin' up shop... Need advice!
 
Well, my Quota's been waiting for six months to be hooked to it's hack 'caus the best sidecar fitter in the region is way busy and the next best fitter wants to weld on the frame... No way! My airhead ST's muffler needs a half inch hole welded up too, and who knows what else is about to break... So clearly I need to upgrade my shop!

Have a 28 foot square garage to work with, and a huge living room with big southern exposed picture windows that's great for working on bikes. I'm thinking my 1st project should be a workbench big enough for a vice, drill press, band saw, bench grinder, etc. I'd like to make it narrow enough (~30") to fit through a door if I want to move it around. Should I put casters with brakes under it, or would that make it too easy to wander around when I'm really torquein' on sumpthin'? As for material, I've got a bunch of 2 by 4s, plywood, and decking left around from earlier projects- should I build the workbench from wood, or should I at least make the top out of steel in case I want to weld on it someday?

Also, any advice in what I should look for in a vise, drill press, band saw, bench grinder, etc.?

Thanks in advance, Diana

Strong Bad 11-30-2012 07:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GearHeadGrrrl (Post 20153325)
Well, my Quota's been waiting for six months to be hooked to it's hack 'caus the best sidecar fitter in the region is way busy and the next best fitter wants to weld on the frame... No way! My airhead ST's muffler needs a half inch hole welded up too, and who knows what else is about to break... So clearly I need to upgrade my shop!

Have a 28 foot square garage to work with, and a huge living room with big southern exposed picture windows that's great for working on bikes. I'm thinking my 1st project should be a workbench big enough for a vice, drill press, band saw, bench grinder, etc. I'd like to make it narrow enough (~30") to fit through a door if I want to move it around. Should I put casters with brakes under it, or would that make it too easy to wander around when I'm really torquein' on sumpthin'? As for material, I've got a bunch of 2 by 4s, plywood, and decking left around from earlier projects- should I build the workbench from wood, or should I at least make the top out of steel in case I want to weld on it someday?

Also, any advice in what I should look for in a vise, drill press, band saw, bench grinder, etc.?

Thanks in advance, Diana

Mount as solid as possible, not on casters.

MrBob 11-30-2012 07:52 PM

For tools and advice on tools - 7 Corners Hardware in St. Paul. Just go there at least once in your life; it will be worth it.

http://www.7corners.com/

Walterxr650l 11-30-2012 07:53 PM

When I get around to building my workbench. I plan to get a set of these castors.

http://images.rockler.com/rockler/im...501-07-500.jpg

They allow you to raise it up onto the wheel for moving, then drop it down onto the legs for a solid work table.

Walter

Wolfgang55 11-30-2012 08:19 PM

Check out HF in person or on line.

jdrocks 12-01-2012 06:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GearHeadGrrrl (Post 20153325)

Also, any advice in what I should look for in a vise, drill press, band saw, bench grinder, etc.?

Thanks in advance, Diana

make a list of items you want in your shop, including the workbench, familiarize yourself with what's available new and the street price, then shop the heck out of craigslist, ebay, etc. for deals at a fraction of the cost of new. the difference in price often allows you to upgrade items on your list to commercial/industrial quality. some of your items will be found in like new condition. people use it once, are done with the job etc., then can't get rid of it fast enough.

if you're welding, get a steel bench. besides the safety issue, you'll be clamping straight edges, jigs, scribing lines, and so on. found used.

in a small shop, put everything on good quality casters that lock.

if a concern at your location, get a construction type job box to lock up anything small and portable. also found used, Knaack or equal, double locking. don't leave tools handy that can be used in an attempt to get into the jobbox.

...in other words, don't chain a cutting torch to the jobbox like a superintendent of mine did several decades ago. the contents of the box were burned up, then the job trailer burned, and the super was soon referred to in the historical context.

sailah 12-01-2012 08:05 AM

You can easily build a very solid workbench that bolts to the wall. I made mine from 2x8 that bolt to concrete anchors into the blocks that make up my garage. Drop plywood down on top and screw down with countersunk screws. Cheap, custom and heavy duty. If you want to make it a welding table just buy a sheet of steel and put that down on top. Also consider finding a SS commercial kitchen setup at auction or clist. They are usually reasonable and easy to keep clean.

For things like drill presses, band saws, vises etc, buy old and buy used. I'm talking like before 1960 old. The quality of those tools is simply unmatched by anything modern which is all made in Taiwan and China. Nothing wrong with that, but you'll appreciate working with a solid american made tool. Of course I have tools made overseas, but my American tools do the heavy lifting around the shop. Estate sales are a great place to get this stuff and usually you get it for super cheap. auctionzip.com is a good place to start for local auctions in your area. Sometimes you come home empty handed but usually there are deals to be had.

kubiak 12-01-2012 10:37 AM

i would buy the best stuff if i was rich but im not so i buy tools and equipment based on how much im going to use it. like if you are only going to use a chopsaw once a year a harbor fright one should be fine or if you are going to make and weld all the time get a good quality welder. i buy consumables at harbor freight like sandpaper and grinding discs, primer guns and so on.

Anorak 12-01-2012 04:05 PM

More electrical outlets than you think you need.

GearHeadGrrrl 12-02-2012 07:06 AM

Shoppin' and Surfin' around
 
1. Will probably skip the casters.
2. + 7 Corners Hardware!
3. HF= Upmarket scrap metal.
4. used vs. new? Out in the country where I live everyone is a DIYer and they often bid old tools up to and beyond new price. But sometimes at the mega auctions good stuff gets ignored and you find a bargain, like my $25 Yamaha MX250.
5. Electrics= no problem! Got 220V @50 amps available in the garage.
6. Welders- only thing USA made I saw was a classic Lincoln 'tombstone" at Lowes, all their MIGs were Mexican made or worse. I hear all the Miller and Hobarts are USA made, may look at them next. Any opinions?

Nice weather here on the Buffalo Ridge, rode about 100 miles on the Guzzi Quota yesterday and checked out the farm store in Pipestone and Lowes in Brookings. May ride down to Sioux Falls today and shop around if I can stomach the holiday traffic.

Head2Wind 12-02-2012 09:29 AM

I'm a believer in DIY and recovering what others discard to then reuse.

Here is a good example of DIY at a larger scale for both rack storage and dynamic working surfaces (aka benches):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EA1jeViV4l8

GearHeadGrrrl 12-02-2012 10:24 AM

To a fault...
 
But I see this carried to a fault out here in the country- for example my neighbor has a road grader, D4, dead IH track loader, two old pickups, and probably every big tool I'd ever need. But most of it was worn out when he bought it, and I wouldn't trust any of his power tools and welding equipment. Sorry, but when I can buy a new Lincoln "tombstone" welder for $300-400, why pay darn near that much for a beat up one with the back cover missing so you know somebody's been in their messin' around.

Head2Wind 12-02-2012 11:03 AM

Buy a Miller or Lincoln MIG, 120v so it will just plug into the wall outlet. Get one that uses shield gas not flux core wire.... It will be one of the foundation tools to build the shop fixtures. Personally I would not buy a buzz box that is typically intended for Electrode (stick) welding for the type of work you will do when fabricating the shop fixtures and then parts/pieces for motorcycles.

Wreckluse 12-02-2012 11:49 AM

For some welding info, try this site.

http://www.weldingtipsandtricks.com/index.html

Warin 12-02-2012 12:34 PM

Vice. Get a good one. One with removable jaws, and get jaws of different shapes for it if they are available. You'll find that you want to hold fork legs and other things of different shapes - soft jaws with groves and notches are what you need then. For most of your work you want the normal metal toothed jaws. People who regularly work with forks have vices permanently set up with nice plastic grooved jaws. Some people have more than one...

Drill press. As many speeds as possible (particularly low speeds) via a belt drive. Slotted or holed table to bolt things too. Variable table height is nice.

A machinist vice to hold small things while you drill them on the drill press. Must be able to bolt this to the drill press table.

Wielder = MIG not stick. You want to be able to wield thin sheet metal. Eg that exhaust.

Band Saw. You can make do with a jig saw, saves space. The time saving is not much, unless you will be using it at least once a week it is not worth the space and money.

Bench. Solid wood. Bolt to the floor and wall if possible. Don't know why you'd want to move it around?

A cheap bench grinder will be good enough. What you will want are good grinding wheels on it. And possibly a linisher? The linisher would get more work than the band saw...

Local services? Can you buy the sidecar fittings rather than make them from bar/sheet stock? If you need to make them from stock you'll need a lath or have a shop that will machine stuff up from stock, where there is a lath you may also find a band saw, mill etc. Good to find those services around your own area.

Closure of firms can be a source of good gear, dealers tend to occupy those auctions though.

Some of the old stuff is bid beyond the price of new stuff because it is simply so much better... but you would need to know that for sure to make it worth your while.


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