Shop Evolution

In the early 1980’s we left our homestead to work elsewhere for 5 years. While we were away we had someone care taking the house and property. He had always wanted to build a log house so he started building a small building. Progress was slow and by the time we returned the log house had only three walls that were only 4 feet high. The workmanship wasn’t great but I thought I would utilize what was there for a woodshed and storage. I added windows, a roof and closed in the front wall. This evolved into my shop.

Shop 01

Time wasn’t kind to the building. Our caretaker had built it on wood blocks and used trees that seemed particularly appealing to carpenter ants. The floor was dirt and it was very difficult to keep rodents out. It was dusty and cold in winter and not very conducive to getting much work done.

Shop 03

Shop 02

Eventually the bottom row of trees started to rot and the walls slowly dropped so that my work benches all sloped away from me. It was time to do something.

Shop 04

The building needed to be replaced but the one bright spot was the roof – I didn’t want to get rid of it because it was in good shape. So, I decided to build a new building, slightly smaller, inside the old building. The new walls were just half an inch below the roof.

Shop 05

When the new shop was complete I chain sawed the old log walls out which allowed the roof to drop on the new walls.

This past weekend I did some more renovations in the shop which brought all this to mind. I got rid of an old radial arm saw that I no longer used and added some much needed bench space. I managed to get some free track lighting so I’m all set to go on some new projects.

Shop 06

Shop 07




  1. Amazing story! You should write this up and submit it somewhere – not sure where, but really, this is fascinating. I had to show my partner, who laughed out loud, and was very impressed.

    • Thanks very much Lynn. Not sure where I would submit it either 😉 It was such a satisfying project. I started in November of 2009 and was able to do all my work indoors, out of the rain. It was great to have an insulated floor and walls on completion. Saving the roof was a real biggie, saving both time and money. When I started cutting up the old log walls huge clumps of drowsy carpenter ants poured out. I don’t think there was one log they hadn’t infested.

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