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Hot Rods Cramped work space, what do you do in the least amount of space.

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Early Ironman, Jan 20, 2017.

  1. Early Ironman
    Joined: Feb 1, 2016
    Posts: 553

    Early Ironman

    My pet peeve is trying to get something done and not having any room to work. Have a decent amount of space to work in now but not enough. Used to only have a narrow one car garage where I was doing a rotisserie restoration. Not fun at all, but better than nothing. Now I have a two car shop and a two car garage.
    I would love to see some people's level of accomplishment with their limited space.
    Sort of as an inspiration to myself and others working within our confines.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    LOU WELLS, Hamtown Al and cactus1 like this.
  2. mgtstumpy
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 8,764


    1. In the late 80s I had a house built then added a separate single car carport where I restored and converted my 66 Ford GTA convertible to RHD;
    2. After I got the Fairlane registered I rebuilt and converted my 86 Thunderbird to RHD in the same carport as well;
    3. In the late 90s I moved into another house I had built and this time added a separate 20' x 20' shed where I built my 35 Chevy phaeton. This time I had room for a bench;
    4. Some 17yrs later I'm still in the same house and now rebuilding my 46 Oldsmobile in the same shed that I did the Chevy. I have NO room whatsoever with additional tools etc I've accumulated. This car is a LOT larger than previous so everything about takes up space so I trip over everything now until I can get the body back on the chassis (Currently on rotisserie). Parts are stored on old bed frames hanging in the roof cavity apex with shelves at 6' level on 3 x sides filled with panels etc.
    I undertook the majority of panel work at home with final painting, some fabrication and final painting at a friend's business. All were nut and bolt rebuilds so they were stripped completely down. In the meantime I've accumulated a few more tools with all the replacements parts in boxes throughout the house (Cupboards, under staircase etc). Prior to early 80s, all previous cars were built under my parent's house in a single car garage.

    Time to move into a smaller house with a larger shed for my next project in retirement.:eek::D

    rEAR FENDER.jpg
    Front fender.jpg
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2017
  3. Flathead Dave
    Joined: Mar 21, 2014
    Posts: 3,335

    Flathead Dave
    from So. Cal.

    I shrink when it gets too tight.
    CBurne7, 56don and Capt Chap like this.
  4. Early Ironman
    Joined: Feb 1, 2016
    Posts: 553

    Early Ironman

    It feels good getting the body back on the frame. My 54 was on the rotisserie for about a year while I pecked away at all the rust holes. Got it back on the frame about a month ago.

    Nice use of your space by the way!
    Amazing how much space gets consumed when you blow a car apart.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app

  5. MidwestOldie
    Joined: Jul 7, 2016
    Posts: 59


    It's a place to park, not work.

    49 In Garage.jpg
    LOU WELLS and Capt Chap like this.
  6. southcross2631
    Joined: Jan 20, 2013
    Posts: 4,414


    Built a Chevy 2 on 3 pieces of 3/4 plywood and stored my tools and parts in a 10x10 tin shed.
    Swept the snow off when it snowed and kept on working.
    Now I have a 30x50 metal building and run out of room every day.
  7. joeycarpunk
    Joined: Jun 21, 2004
    Posts: 4,445

    from MN,USA

    I find the more space I have the more junk I have. I just appreciate having a heated and somewhat equipped shop. Organization is the key there is never enough room.
    clunker and Capt Chap like this.
  8. If you can see the floor you have plenty of room.
    I used folding card tables to work on in my 1 1/2 car garage.
    I recently moved and now have a 2 car garage, but still use the card tables.
    Driveways are where you park you car, asphalt gets you to the dirt race track. Rick
    40 Olds likes this.
  9. Cars that are exploded into a zillion parts suck up a lot of room. Once my Ford was back together it was like another garage. If I can go through all my stuff I can consolidate it a lot better. Plans are to go out the back of the garage 10' or 12' and that gets all my machine shop equipment in one spot and I have an open bay to use.
    LOU WELLS and Capt Chap like this.
  10. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 48,691


    Mostly, I dream about having enough gumption to get rid of half of my crap, so I'll have some room to spread out. I have plenty of room, but I have too much crap in it.
    LOU WELLS, flatford39 and Capt Chap like this.
  11. IMAG0106.jpg This is my 20 x 24 garage...Built the roadster in it..Now trying to do an A coupe there...It's a tight fit
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  12. My previous home had only a carport that I converted into an attached garage. I rebuilt my 65 Corvette in it and it was a real hassle. When I moved I decided to build a double car garage so I would have plenty of room. Well you know how that goes, by the time you put in work benches and tools, you are out of room again. I spend more time moving stuff out of the way than I do working on the car.
    I have decided you can't have enough room unless you build an airplane hanger.
    Capt Chap likes this.
  13. pwschuh
    Joined: Oct 27, 2008
    Posts: 2,411


    Ya gotta get stuff off the floor and hang it on the walls and ceiling. Don't let anything rest on the floor unless the walls and ceiling are already full.
  14. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,787



    My brother and I were in our preteen and teenage years when we started to mess around with cars. We had a small “rumpus” room in the backyard. It had a ton of opening windows and a couple of opening doors. We used it for all forms of recreation and birthday parties. But, as we needed a specific workspace for cars, we decided to install a two car garage door. We took out some windows and the two opening main doors and put in this plywood and 2x4 garage door. It was heavy, but better than not having any space for work. The whole building was about 18 feet long by 12 feet wide. It had 2x4 and 4x6 exposed ceiling cross bracing. The windows cranked out for ventilation when the garage door was closed.

    We were now ready for working on our Model A and then later, our 40 Willys coupe. We also had to tear down and reconstruct my mom’s lattice fence in the garden so we could drive or push the cars back into that newly formed garage. There was already a 10x12 concrete pad out in front and that made working outside simple.

    We got two metal drive-in speakers and hooked up our AM radio to it creating a simple, whole room sound. We supported the ceiling cross beams so we could hook up a winch and chain for motor removal and installation. When the double door was up, the whole car could go in sideways or drive in for just motor work.

    Our birthday table and benches were moved outside with a new coat of paint and varnish. Now, the whole room was for car(s). It was tight, but enough room for a workbench, tools, fans, engine dolly, when the car was moved inside on rainy days, the space was very confining. (Especially when the big double door was pulled down.) We had plenty of room to rebuild a 283 into a 292, rework the heads, and install all of our speed equipment. With the Willys in there, not so much space. A rolling welding cart was attached to one wall and helped in the construction.

    On sunny days or if we needed the car to be outside on the concrete during rainy days, we stretched a huge canvas tarp from the extended upraised garage door all the way to some permanent outdoor clothes drying lines and poles. That made a huge covered workspace outdoors under a protective cover.

    It would not have been possible, but that extra building in the long backyard finally served its purpose for the times. First, it was a fishing tackle, outboard motor storage, and workshop for my dad. Then it was birthday and pre-teen parties. Finally, it was an actual converted small garage for our Willys build.


    Garage tales from 1958-60 in So Cal.
  15. We changed the motor twice in the trailer... It was tight, but that's how we used to do it back in our racing days. We didn't want anybody to see what we got in there! :eek::D

    biggeorge, LOU WELLS, clunker and 4 others like this.
  16. Changed the transmission a couple of times too. I was kinda ruff on things at first...

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  17. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 28,071


    I just never finish things, the garage interior is one of them. The idea was to make the inside look like a 1910-15 carriage house, north wall is done and has a coat of paint, that was 25 years ago. Sheetrocking the celing should have been job one I know, but I'm doing that now as I move the pile of stuff aand car projects around. Bob DSCF6037.JPG
    LOU WELLS and Capt Chap like this.
  18. Early Ironman
    Joined: Feb 1, 2016
    Posts: 553

    Early Ironman

    I love how well equipped and organized you are.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  19. Early Ironman
    Joined: Feb 1, 2016
    Posts: 553

    Early Ironman

    I love this story!

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  20. TagMan
    Joined: Dec 12, 2002
    Posts: 6,126


    50-Years ago, I rebuilt an Indian motor cycle in the basement of an old farm house we lived in. Only a small portion of it had a concrete floor, the rest was dirt. Ceiling height was only 5', so I had to walk around all bent over and trip over stuff. I dreamed of having enough space someday.

    Fast forward to today - I have a 30'x40' shop, 3-car garage, a separate single car garage and two sheds........and I STILL don't have enough room and trip over stuff. (I also still walk around bent over, but that's due to back problems.)

    George Carlin was right - "Stuff multiplies to fill the available space".
  21. Kan Kustom
    Joined: Jul 20, 2009
    Posts: 2,669

    Kan Kustom

    Buy bigger shop, fill up, buy bigger shop, fill up repeat.
    LOU WELLS, mkebaird, Montana1 and 2 others like this.
  22. Well my shop is cramped on steroids. Cramped enough that I work on the driveway cramped.

    I got shit hung on the walls, stuck under other things, hidden in other parts of the house. What I do most is trip over shit and bitch a lot. That's what you commonly do in a cramped garage.

    I have had cramped garages and too small driveways for a long time, I can out cuss a stevedore. :)
    LOU WELLS, brad2v, Tim and 3 others like this.
  23. Raiman1959
    Joined: May 2, 2014
    Posts: 1,427


    I never have enough room....and I've taken to putting 4'' inch rubber wheels (with locking brackets to keep from rolling) on 2 old picnic tables I bought at a yard sale for $10 each (reinforced a bit with 2x4's), and ''rolling'' them outdoors when I need a level space to work on, or to hold the necessary tools as a work bench. Seems to work okay thus far, and frees up space in front of my projects or on the sides....just sorta ''huff them out'' the door as one unit, and simply push the tables back in front of the each car project up tight when finished for the day, without disrupting the needed placements or tools....I got about 1' foot of space to maneuver between the cars & garage doors... to slide by the cars when all is in place & locked up I gotta suck up my gut and hold my breath before I can get the doors open!

    And then .....I often times just roll the whole car outside about 8 to 12 feet (with a 12x16' rain tarp applied) when I need a bigger space or hard floor to tinker on things when it's raining. It's cramped in my garage big time with the doors shut up tight, so I gotta do something get a few feet to maneuver myself ....or I'd be twisted like a pretzel and then I'd never get off the floor next to the walls.....literally;)
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2017
    Capt Chap likes this.
  24. trollst
    Joined: Jan 27, 2012
    Posts: 2,019


    Mine is 18X30, cramped. I limit the stuff that goes inside, it's stored anywhere but the floor, some of you guys here have beautiful work spaces all cluttered up with shit everywhere, that don't work for me.
    When I'm done for the day, it's picked up, cleaned up, hung up swept up, I make no excuses why it isn't done. My friend down the road recently spent $40 grand building a shop to get out of the weather, now he works outside because his shop is full of "cool stuff", money well spent?
    Capt Chap likes this.
  25. This is half of my garage. Cramped? Yes! Do I get pissed some times ? Yes! However, a lot of work gets done, and I do run the drag coupe operation out of this space. I am now going out to my little shop to have some big fun working on the coupe, if you hear some yelling and swearing , its just me!:eek::D:D WIN_20150412_144913.JPG
    trollst and Capt Chap like this.
  26. LOLI am getting ready to clean mine up from the last escapade and I guarantee there is going to be cussing. Prepare yourself for words that you will have to look up on the web. :D :D :D
    mad mikey and Capt Chap like this.
  27. Early Ironman
    Joined: Feb 1, 2016
    Posts: 553

    Early Ironman

    Love your library by the way.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    mad mikey likes this.
  28. Early Ironman
    Joined: Feb 1, 2016
    Posts: 553

    Early Ironman

    Glad I'm not the only one cussing like a sailor. But at least I have the excuse of actually being a sailor

    So far not a single neighbor has complained about the verbal garbage spewing from the confines of my space!

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    mad mikey likes this.
  29. nochop
    Joined: Nov 13, 2005
    Posts: 2,081

    from norcal

    Did mine in a one car garage. Made a dolly that put the body above the frame. Roll one out, roll one back in
    mad mikey and Capt Chap like this.
  30. Raiman1959
    Joined: May 2, 2014
    Posts: 1,427


    ^^^ haha....I've matured a ''little'' bit over the years, and cleaned up my vocabulary wife actually brags I'm a nice guy ''now''....about a week ago, she came out to the garage with a friend of hers from work, and I was huffing and puffing wrenching, and cussing in 7 different languages in various octaves, and kicking my feet on the floor from under my car....she told me they 'heard me' and quietly slid back out the door waving her hand wife whispering & apologizing while ushering her friend into the kitchen for a cup o' coffee...and waited till I came into the house....some habits (my time honored special language skills) are just extremely handy at those ''special'' times ya' need a good insult to an all-to-common broken bolt....but, fortunately, I've kept my mouth in the garage for special occasions:D;):p
    tfeverfred, The37Kid, brad2v and 2 others like this.

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