Building a Workshop, Roofing advice and general hints!!!

12mm would have been better but hey i have always gone for overkill

providing you have enough screws[every 8 to 12 inches] you shold get a lot off support off the ply
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I replied to this right away but the post has not shown up, very strange!!

In hindsight I would have used 12mm ply as the 9mm is a little flimsy in certain areas.

I am supposed to be getting 8 5/6ft strip lights dropped off, but they don’t look to be appearing! Each ‘quarter’ of the place will have an individual switch so I won’t be lighting the whole place if I’m only in one corner.
I’m just wondering if there are any cheap/good/efficient lights available? IMO strip lights are as good as they should be!

Also, I'm thinking of energy efficient and cheap ways to heat the place, initially I was going to install a wood burner and a few radiators but a friend has a similar setup and his garage caught fire!! I was going to use a fire proof material around the whole thing and behind the flue but I’m still not convinced it’s the way to go. If I can only heat the office corner we will just have to put up with the cold everywhere else!

Anyone have any ideas??

I’ll have some more pics of the interior tomorrow hopefully!!


lots of insulation will make a big big difference to cost and comfort of heating. I will let someone else tell you the watts-per-square metre of heat lost per degree through a board, and through 100mm of insulation, but you will be stunned.

loft fibreglass is the cheapest, and is fireproof.

if you line the inside with plasterboard, it is also fireproof but is more easily damaged than a ply inner skin. A skin will also make it more rigid.

Fixing benching and long shelving to floor and walls will also make it more rigid if you add some triangulation struts

strip lights are dangerous if you are using rotating or fast-reciprocating machinery. CFLs are now incredibly cheap to buy and run, and lamp battens are IMO quicker to fit. You might consider 2-way switching so you can turn lights on and off from a panel by the door or from the individual point.,
Hi John

strip lights are dangerous if you are using rotating or fast-reciprocating machinery. ,[/quote]

Please can i ask why? is it due to the strip light flickering?


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Please can i ask why? is it due to the strip light flickering?



i think it should be "could be dangerous"
i have three strips in my 10ft by 12ft workshop for this very reason
to be honest with only the one single tube whilst using table saw chop saw 1/4"-1/2" routers planer thicknesser etc i have never once thought "blimey i thought that blade had stopped" before it has

now this could be because i have loads off natural light or because i dont have extraction on with these machines[except the planer thicknesser]so i get the sound to allert me

these are the tubes i chose

toolstation item 56581 if that link fails
even when they are not visibly flickering, fluorescent tubes are flashing on and off 50 times a second. So e.g. a saw blade rotating at 3000 rpm (or 6000 or 9000 or 12000 etc) may appear stationery, but also, if it has regularly spaced teeth, it may appear to be stationary at other speeds as well.

You may have used a stroboscopic lamp to illuminate the timing mark, so it appears stationary, when adjusting ignition timing on an older car.

Older machine tools always have a lampholder for a filament bulb to illuminate the workpiece

you can get a special electronic device to put on fluorescents so that the tubes do not all flash at the same time, but of course you can't tell if it is working, and if one or more tubes fail or are disconnected to save electricity, you're back to square one.
Yeah i've noticed that when i was at school doing woodwork/metal work, i dont really use 'that' many power tools other than a grinder or drill press every now and again as it's car parts that i deal with really.

Do you have any links to the CFL bulbs and fittings that will be suitable, everything i see are Grow lamps that would give me a tan i think, lol.

just a few pics before i started to move my crap in!!




still got some minor bits to finish and run the CCTV cables ect but the end is in sight!!

anyone have any ideas about keeping the place warm??

Thanks for the help guys!

You should cover up the plastic feet on those units with plinths. They're not very strong, and it won't take much to break them.

As for lights, get high frequency fluorescent battens.
Yeah i could do with getting some plinths, nearly broke on the other day!

I ended up just using 3 x 11w energy saving lights for the office corner, plenty bright enough. I'm going to fit a couple more where the small door and window are and then fit strip lights to the workshop/garage side.

Finished office:


Still got to put the edges on the cuts of the worktop.

I'm thinking of putting one of these in for a bit of heat:

I will put fireproof board all around it and also along the back of the flue, i'm just wondering what to do about the flue hole through the tin roof as a weather slate wont be the best IMO, any ideas?

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Just thought i'd check back in after a few months! Even with a couple of foot of snow over the last few weeks, 80mph winds and quite a bit of rain the workshop is still in one piece and watertight! The measurement from the floor to the centre of the truss never altered, might be due to me overbuilding them! lol

When the snow melted it pulled some of the guttering down, the same happened on all the new Barrett houses next door so i'm not fussed! haha

We just ended up with a small portable Butane heater to take the chill out! I'd love a proper wood burner but i think we would be messing about keeping it going. Gas is easy i suppose and a £20 bottle has been lasting 3-4weeks anyway.
calour gas or paraffin give out lots off water where as a wood burner dries the air

if i knew to keep my workshop warm it would take 3 or 4 visits an hour i wouldn't have bought a stove because at around 20p an hour or £1 a day its going to take me around 400 days to get my money back also have to account for the 10 mins lighting cleaning and 50 mins stoking a day thats an extra hour a day so my hour saves me around £1 :cry: :cry:

ok the satisfaction the smell and the jacket potatoes and home smoked fish and ham make it worth :D

the other thing is if i dont use my workshop for 2 days i have to heat it up to around 22 degrees every other day if the temp drops below -2 on ether day overnight this can take 75 to 90 mins or leave the electric fan on +3 frost stat and about 20 to 50p a day for 24hrs use
stupid question.. since you have electric out there, is there any reason you can't get gas out there too?

failing that, another stupid question, can you get a boiler to work on bottled gas? :)
Funny you should have said that, vie not been here for a while and only just seen your post! I'm sick of being drowsy from the butane heater I have at the moment so have been thinking of alternative. Wood burning is out of the question due to the above hassle as well as the on or off way in which they are used.

Getting Natural gas safely to something like this isn't worth the hassle, not in my case anyway, the meter is a good 30m away from the workshop and at the other side of the house.

I've been looking and an LPG setup might be a viable alternative, the boilers don’t seem too expensive, I can have a thermostat and I can actually use my plumbing skills for once!

I'm looking around for some recommendations for a cheap room sealed pressurised LPG boiler, at a guess less than 10Kw would be more than adequate no matter how many radiators I run. I'd prefer something with all the pump, pressure vessel etc all built in for simplicity, no need for a combi as I’m not running a tap in there.

If anyone has any idea's let me know!



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