You might be tempted to build the workshop on a cheap, flat site. I wouldn’t recommend this. The best and most realistic build site is in a building that has not been re-used previously (usually, but not always, in the last ten years), and that will have lots of wood and plumbing (and perhaps a shed to put it in). There is a great free website for this, and if you are feeling creative, a few options exist.
If you want a big, beautiful building in a central, quiet location, I strongly recommend the Green Building Institute, which specialises in sustainable design of large-scale, single-use buildings.
One of the big reasons I am working on this is to help with community housing, providing them with an easy, cheap way to build. I know I will get plenty of comments from homeowners who will be doing it for themselves – I think this is one of the reasons for making the toolkit, and I hope it helps.
My workshop, as built, has:
6 windows 1 door
4 fire hoses
a kitchen table
2 chairs 1 table
2 storage bins
A large kitchen sink (which fits under the kitchen table, which fits underneath the dresser)
And it will be powered by an induction heater. As with all the other buildings in the project, the heating system is a combination of a water tank and a solar panel in the roof. It can also be accessed by a garage door, which I have installed in the front of my new office.
I have also installed an aluminium frame chimney in the roof to use as a sump for my water tank and also to keep the hot water from coming back to boil.
You can see my instructions here (and in the project notes – and as a PDF download – here).
The workshop looks amazing on the outside, and I am convinced that it has the best possible location for the project – it’s near to all my family. The fire and heating system is completely self-contained, completely off the electricity grid and completely outside the reach of a developer, meaning that I am free to do as I please with what I’ve got, as a community centre or a workshop for people to learn new skills.
For all the details see the DIY Kit.
I do hope to use this workshop in my community building projects
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