One of the features that sold me on the house we live in was the awesome workspace in the garage. I immediately fell in love with the wall-to-wall pegboard, wide and deep storage cabinets, heavy-duty fans, and the sweet corner benches. I dreamed about the garage and all the col things I would do when it was mine until we finally closed on the house. When we got here, the first thing I did was go out to the garage and see my new sanctum…

…had been removed.



The storage cabinets were still there, and the pegboard. But the benches and the fans had been removed. Hell, even all the pegs for the pegboard were gone. 



Dammit, it was right here!

So, what’s a Scarydad to do when faced with such disappointment? That’s right. I grabbed a pad and pencil, a tape measure, and a six-pack and set about designing an even better shop than the one that disappeared. The next weekend I got all the stuff and recruited a friend for help. Here’s sort of a play-by-play of the birth of a sanctum.

Workbench frame is mounted to wall studs. This reduces vibration when using power tools

The first thing I did was look up standard heights and depths for workbenches. Then I realized that standard is for short people and I’m not short, so I measured myself instead. Once I had my frame in place, I ran power behind and around it so I would have multiple sources within easy reach. 

Workbench complete.
Once I laid down my 3/4” plywood countertop, I was ready to set up shop. I hung two heavy-duty super vortex-inducing fans above the bench and connected them to the same circuit that controls the lights. When I flip the switch, these twin turbines work as super-charged heat mutilators, keeping me cool as I work. I never thought it would be possible to love a fan but I do. Aw hell, I love both of them!

I also began my slow love-hate relationship with pegboard pegs. Let me tell you about pegboard pegs: Get only the ones with 2 prongs that go into the wall and where a horizontal peg comes out. All the other little S-hooks and other crap will fall out of the f@#%ing wall every time you grab a tool. Every flippin’ time.

Only get these in different lengths. Everything else sucks. A lot.
So now the bench was in place and I had my fans and my pegboard working, it was time to make some stuff. And make stuff I did. If you check out my website, scarydad.com, you will see all sorts of fun things I’ve made in my sanctum. I spend a lot of time out there and I’m always improving a little this and a little that. Well, the next thing I needed was a radio. I found this sweet little Tivoli Model One on eBay that was cheap because it had some issues with the tuner. No problem, I just got my buddy Chris to help me realign the crystals and now I have killer sound and a high-end radio in the shop. 


In time I acquired more tools, and the hate part of the love-hate for pegs won out. I got rid of all but the ones from the picture above and went with magnetic bars. These are so heavenly I can barely describe it. Your tools are all within reach. They don’t get hung or snagged on anything. There’s not a little piece of metal bouncing down and going under things to never be recovered. They just sit there and magnetize and the tool sticks until you want it, then you just sort of set it on the wall and it stays.

I built myself a little bench and made some shelves out of old fence planks. I didn’t really think about it when I put them up, but they really have a cool vintage feel to them. Makes me think of manly things like fire and whisky. And fences. Fences are manly.


A couple of things to round out the shop and I’ll leave you to your work.

Doing all of these projects is thirsty work. Bride and I agreed that me coming in every ten minutes for beer was disruptive and was making the dog all jittery. The only solution, then, was to place a dedicated beer fridge out in the sanctum. Now I can guzzle all I wish and never break stride. It’s a good thing, really, except I can never keep the damn thing full. It’s like, the fridge is always empty and the recycling bin is always full. I just can’t figure that one out.

Anyway, that’s about all for tonight. Thanks for stopping by and hey, if you have a sweet little space you escape to every now and then, let us know about it in the comments.

Scarydad spends most of his time wishing he could be in his garage drinking beer and making things. The rest of the time he likes to hang out in his garage drinking beer and making things, then writing about it on his blog. Follow him on Twitter, Like him on Facebook, and send him emails at scarydad@scarydad.com

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