Monday, June 1, 2009

Getting up to date...

I'm now getting the finishing touches done on the parts that will modify the built in project to get it up to speed, and hopefully bring it to a conclusion. I'm also going over everything in my mind so I can learn everything possible from the experience, but in general, it's just about done.

For the rest of the week, I'm putting a shop project together to help me better organize and make use of my space.

One of the things I noticed, looking at my bench, and the desk, and the shelves... It's all filled with stuff. Patterns, and hardware, and a chest of old library catalog drawers filled with hardware, and battery chargers, and miscellaneous stuff. There's a cart that's topped with a metal chest of drawers, containing bits and pieces and nails and screws. Tool cases for cordless tools, larger tools I don't pull out so often, parts, pieces, and so on. It took a while for me to figure out what the problem with all of this was.

All of the hardware, and the parts, old patterns, and so forth, are all things that I do or will need at some point, but a lot of what's there isn't stuff that's being actively used. Many of the small projects are back burner, if not in the freezer for storage at this point. Basically I've clogged up my active work space with stuff that should be tucked away somewhere. Even my large tool chest from school is filled mainly with tools I don't use as often as the stuff I keep on the shelf behind me. So, I decided a while back to work out a design for a storage cabinet for the corner to store most of this stuff. And I'm taking this week to do that, and reorganize the space to hold things I'll use more often, or to store parts of current projects, so they don't spill out into the space. I'm also using the opportunity to build a larger drafting board, which will hang off of the new cabinet, so I can clear out the huge desk in the corner.

I got the desk for $10 at a yard sale, and thought I was really getting away with something. It's a huge industrial steel desk, probably made in the 50s or 60s, with a huge drafting table attached to the back. There are vertical and angle adjustments, for the drafting table, there are drawers for storing drawings, files, and office supplies... it's a really awesome desk. I just don't use it. And it takes up valuable real estate space while collecting dust and forgotten junk, so I'm moving it for now, and possibly getting rid of it later.


In general, I'm still in a good place. I'm also recovering from the built-in project. I enjoyed it, it was a fun project. But it was also a lot of long hours for not enough pay. (I should have bid higher on that job... live and learn.) I learned a lot about my capacity for working long hours, and still feel good about life. And I discovered the dangers of getting too deep into a project, and letting other responsibilities slide. I think if I can get the money end of things under control, I can be happy with having too much work to do. I just need to make sure I have the rest of my world tied down before I start spinning up like that again.

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