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Can’t stand the heat

Regardless of what you think is the cause, there is some crazy weather these days.

We live in an area that has always experienced hot summers. That’s why California’s central valley has been one of the world’s largest tomato producers. Tomatoes love heat. But woodworkers, maybe not so much.

Cooling a woodworking shop is not so easy. Most shops are located in commercial buildings and few of these were built to be energy efficient. My shop is in a concrete tilt-up with a 17’ ceiling, 6”-thick cement walls and 3/4” plywood roof sheathing. Insulation? Not a scrap.

Running AC in a shop like this is virtually impossible. Considering our power bill as is, adding the cost of cooling would wipe us out. I did install a large evaporative cooler and it did make the shop more tolerable but the humidity it added was unacceptable. We ended up shutting the water off and just using it as a big fan.

So we flee for home when it hits a 110 and look forward to fall.


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It can’t be done

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The reality is …

Many times, I have heard people say how much they love woodworking. Some were thinking of starting a woodworking business so that they could make a living doing what they love.

(Not) feeling the heat – Part two

I got extremely lucky with my shop heating issue, and hopefully what I ended up doing will be helpful to some of you, too.

Lacking the basics

I came across an interesting question the other day. The poster said he had no woodworking experience but wanted suggestions about what tools were needed to build a project he had in mind.

Imagine the possibilities

In the normal course of our day work, we often encounter what are known as design opportunities.

Where did everyone go?

It wasn’t too long ago when it seemed like someone was coming into the shop looking for work about every day. These days, it’s a rare occurrence.