I saw the email pop up in my inbox with “Is That Your Shop?” as the subject line –referring to the picture of the A frame on the website home page. I think that’s the question I’ve been asked the most, and yes, that is my shop. I’ve spent most of my time there in the last year, but realized I’ve had few visitors. Welcome to my space. Watch your step.
The shop is up the hill on the outskirts of Rossland, 125 Granite Road exactly, north of the ski hill, directly across the highway. You can catch a glimpse of it if you’re heading towards Christina Lake as you pass under the lights of the 4-way intersection. The view out the front window to the south is directly up Red Mountain, to the southwest would be Granite were it not for trees and a lone power pole obscuring the mountain. Coffee in the winter on the front porch is the perfect place sit and watch the skiers bombing down War Eagle and Hole in the Wall.
The building itself is an old cabin originally built for the Rossland winter – steep pitched cedar shake roof with a first and second floor, baseboard heat only, no running water, surrounded by woods of tall cedars. There is an addition at the rear, making up the back half of the building.The wall dividing the two spaces was removed, making the main floor a large uninterrupted space. The floors are connected by a neatly made circular flatbar staircase with grey carpet treads. The coldest time of year is the fall when there is no snow to naturally insulate the building.
My workspace and my large tools – table saw, band saw, drill press, occupy the main floor. The upstairs I use for storage. I bought most of the large tools from another woodworker, Gilles, who I had met maybe three years ago or so. We had gone to the same school, had the same teachers, him probably 10 years before. He called me, “I’m leaving, do you still need a shop?” He was preparing for a new adventure, and was kind enough to set me up for my own, get me in and help me out however he could.
The front end of the shop is my “machine room” and the back end I dedicate to lumber storage and finishing. The air compressor is my favorite. It’s a beast – an Ingersoll-Rand stamped “Built 1953” that refuses to die. I’ve changed the belts and flywheels on it a couple times already, am always on the lookout for a new one just in case, but it continues to persevere. It’s the old standard issue industrial green and shakes the shop floor when it fires up – my kids are terrified to death of it and I don’t blame them. Most everything else is a newer vintage with the exception of a few of my antique shop planes, scrapers and saws.
Anyway, that’s the $2 tour, probably more than you need to know. If you see the lights on – stop by for more.