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Patron’s Corner September 2021

Hello everyone and a belated Happy New Year from me, Nicola and Bamber! 

It has been a very weird start to 2021. I am not going to labour the whole pandemic situation, but we sincerely hope you are all keeping well and as active as possible. 

In this newsletter, I hope to share with you my thoughts regarding the layout of my new workshop. We have been given a date of January 29th for completing on the purchase or our new home in the Derbyshire Dales, so it will be a busy time for me getting operational again. Our son, Charlie, will be giving me some much-needed assistance. 

Derbyshire photo by Tim Hill

My last workshop was the double integral garage of our previous property but the new one will be a full-size single garage so intelligent storage and overall layout need to be well executed.

If you can imagine the three internal walls, one of the long walls will have base and wall units all the way along. This will comprise a mixture of cupboards and drawer packs whilst above there will be typical units.

The doors and drawers will not have handles or knobs but, instead, an integral recess for fingertips. Avoiding door or drawer fittings means I won’t be banging my knees of anything else! 

The opposite long wall is where I am going to have my lathes. The workshop is going to have four lathes in total, three of which are midi sized with a fourth being a new full-sized machine which will be, surprise surprise, an Axminster trade machine. 

A safe and productive workspace is a must for any serious woodworker. It allows us to maximise our time working on projects and enables us to spend more time doing what we love

The positioning of the lathes will differ from the last workshop. Instead of being lined up longitudinally, they will be angled in a line with the largest lathe nearest the workshop door and all with the headstocks nearest the wall.

If they were facing the other way a larger gap would be needed to enable the headstock to be removed if needed. Finally, the back wall will have room for my bandsaw and pillar drill. 

Blindness has an effect on every single aspect of my life so the saying ‘a place for everything and everything in its place is a critical mantra for me. Therefore, all my turning tools will be in racks on the wall next to the lathes.

Safe, at hand and never to be tidied away by anyone but myself. In the heat of battle, I need quick access to keep me ahead of the curve. Any remaining wall space is earmarked for my COSHH cabinets, fire extinguishers and First Aid kit. 

‘a place for everything and everything in its place is a critical mantra for me.

A safe and productive workspace is a must for any serious woodworker. It allows us to maximise our time working on projects and enables us to spend more time doing what we love. I personally don’t brush up and hoover every day but, after each project, I do a deep clean and ‘reset’ the workshop to its fresh, clean configuration. 

These are still testing times for all of us and our thoughts are with each and everyone associated with UK Men’s Sheds. 

Keep on turning! 

Chris Fisher RPT