Monday, September 24, 2012

The Garage Journal


I happened to be surfing the web for vintage toolboxes, for fun obviously, when I stumbled across a website out of the states called "The Garage Journal."

Right then, everything changed.

I was browsing through entries in this blog-style publication, and came across an article/discussion based on a 1950's popular mechanics issue showing the perfect small hot rod garage. This small, purpose built shop had all the basics, everything you need for your own personal shop on a budget. 

One poster left a link to his thread; "Jack Olsen's 12 Gauge Garage." It was as if I suddenly was staring at what my garage would be when I own a house. As an Industrial Designer, I cannot stress enough the value of basics. It is almost always the simplest looking things that have the most thought behind them, and this clever garage is no exception. Every inch of space is geared for productivity, and backed by someone with a good eye for deals, details, and in this case, durable cabinets. I knew that The Willys could not be restored in the driveway, so I set to work gutting one of the most packed garages i know of; Mine.

To start, I had moved the wagoneer up north, where it sits waiting for winter. I then, in limited detail, began purging the garage of years of built up nothingness and valueless junk. Things that had been kept because "someday i could use that" were binned, recycled, or given away. I had a huge table of free stuff at the end of my driveway, worthless to me, but to someone else it could be very useful, and everything was taken.

I came across 600sqft of vinyl tile online for $50, and pounced. there were 3 colours of tile, so ended up going with the ones that matched each other best. this worked out to the undeniably inexpensive 8c/sqft price tag for the tile, though the glue would add to that.

I built 2 storage units above the garage doors to make use of the dead space, and converted an old platform-mezzanine into a hanging loft across the back wall for more overall storage space. this is where lawn chairs, bags of fertilizer, snowblowers, etc go.

After a full evening of scrubbing, hosing, and solvent cleaning, I spent last Saturday smearing glue on the floor and fitting down this tile from 1964. My girlfriend helped me immensely racking these tiles, and it's obvious she loves me an awful lot to help out with things like a garage. Overall I'd say I'm impressed with the results, I still have to seal the floor in a few days but I think it will hold up to some abuse, and will be more comfortable to walk on than brute concrete.