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  1. #21
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    Around late 2016 my wife and I start thinking about getting a bigger place. My father in-law comes up to visit a lot and we talked about him having an in-law sweet at the house. By 2017 we find a vacant lot we like, only issue will be water as nothing is advertised in the listing or the realtor so we assume we will need a well and wells in the area are hit and miss. One of the closest neighbors well puts out 1/4 gal/min. We make an offer on the land with a well contingency. I have a well driller scheduled to drill during escrow and the day before we drill I get all the disclosures from the title company and with it is a shared well agreement with a different neighbor. I end up having the well tested (12gal/min) and we decide not do drill. Turns out the realtor is a moron. We buy the lot in March 2017 with the plan that I do all the building , and by build I mean I do the building without a contractor. The business does not have a lot of traction yet so financially I'll probably save more money building than I would making money making parts, the deciding factor is however I always wanted to build a house.

    land_aerial_view.jpg

    The plan is to build the shop first, move into it, sell our current house, and then build the new house. I settle on a 34'x54'x16' +12' roof only lean to steel building with the last 14' of it being a two story living area. Here is a layout I did of the floor plan. I don't have the VMC yet but am planning to have room for one.

    shop_floor_plan.jpg
    Zoning won't allow me to permit the shop without a permit for the house so I get to work designing the house which turns out to suck up way more time than I thought. I do all the usual stuff like contact the building department to see what their requirements. I buy the Code book they use and start reading and drafting. During this time I borrow a skid steer from my Dad and clear some of the brush to get a feel for the land.

    land_01.jpg

    A while later I borrowed his backhoe and dug the septic test holes, the city requires a septic permit before you apply for a building permit. The county does not like the dirt (rock) and says I'll need an 'alternate system'. I managed to design the septic system and get a permit but it was a major headache and took a lot of time due to it being non-standard.

    tesholes.jpg

    After like a year of monkeying around figuring everything out with the plans I finally submit for the first permit spring of 2018 and by the summer and over $5,000 later in fees so someone else can tell me what I can do on my own property I get all my permits. The approved plans are here if anyone is interested in taking a peek.
    http://goldenfab.com/temp_share/Hous...Plans_Rev-.pdf
    http://goldenfab.com/temp_share/Hous...lans_Rev_1.pdf

    The house has some "passive solar" design features like sizing the roof overhangs to get sunlight in the winter and shade in the summer.


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  3. #22
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    During the time I was planing for the new shop and working on the house plans I continued making face panels and really got the process down. There were talks of orders of sets of them in the hundreds a year but that fell through.

    panel_00.jpg
    panel_01.jpg
    panel_02.jpg
    panel_03.jpg
    panel_04.jpg

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  5. #23
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    Along with the face panels I was machining the electronics enclosures they went with. I got a few orders for these which ended up being around a hundred individual machined parts. I'm still using the Kent knee mill CNC conversion. Manual tool changes with R8 collects. It becomes really apparent I need a VMC with a tool changer.

    enclosures01.jpg
    enclosures02.jpg
    enclosures03.jpg
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails enclosures01.jpg   enclosures02.jpg  

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  7. #24
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    Do you know what aircraft those panels were for?

  8. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldenfab View Post
    A little off topic. I'm out working on sheeting the new shop yesterday (more on that later) and my 4 year old son keeps talking about how he is building a skateboard. I say sure buddy that's great. I encourage him but inside I don't take him seriously. While I'm working he assumes ownership of one of my cordless drills, some scrap lumber and a metal bracket. He asks for help here and there sinking some wood (some of them he gets by himself. Today we are back out working and I notice he found some caster wheels (must have been at out house) and brings them out to the new place. He tells me he needs a drill bit and needs help drilling some holes. He marks out where he wants them with a sharpie and I help him with the drilling and next thing you know he has a skateboard! He came up with this all on his own, worked on it for two days, had the foresight, planning and follow through to actually make it. Sure am proud of the little guy.


    Attachment 248358
    Attachment 248359

    Attachment 248357
    Goldenfab - good on you! May God bless you and open the windows of heaven for you!

  9. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrHook View Post
    Do you know what aircraft those panels were for?
    I'm not certain. I think I made parts for two different aircraft. I think one was for an experimental class airplane. The others may have been for a new light jet by Stratos. Most of it was just prototype parts. I'm not sure if they ever flew. Here is a pic of the panels I made in a cockpit mock up.
    [email protected] on Instagram: “Latest panel for the new Stratos 716
    Come see us at booth 15 at Oshkosh”

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  11. #27
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    This is looking east where the new shop where go after I cleared some of the brush. I needed to move over 500 yards of dirt.

    shop_grading01.jpg

    After most of the heavy grading is done looking the same'ish direction.

    shop_grading04.jpg

    A view from further back standing where the house will go.

    shop_grading03.jpg

    Looking west standing at the SE corner where the shop will be.

    shop_grading02.jpg

    An aerial shot my brother took with his quad copter.

    grading_aerial_view.jpg

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  13. #28
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    Fantastic thread !
    The panels look really good and pro.

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  15. #29
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    Another failed product attempt was a rack for drinking glasses. My wife wanted one for our kitchen so I made some extra and she put them for sale online. Only had one order so far.

    cup_rack_01.jpg
    cup_rack_02.jpg

    Some manual turning work for customers.

    arbor_01.jpg
    arbor_02.jpg
    boraching.jpg

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  17. #30
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    A while back when I was first getting things going with the rotary valve head and gearing up with sand casting I cast some sand mold flasks to use for my foundry work.

    casted_flasks.jpg

    This is the water brake I started working on for my engine test stand dyno. Its cast from aluminum and finish machined. Still not finished...
    water_brake_01.jpg
    water_brake_02.jpg

    A powdered metal part I made a while back in house to be used as a seal for the rotary valve engine project I was working on.

    powdred_metal.jpg

    About a year ago or so a local manufacturing company found me and outsources some design work to me from time to time. It has been a great relationship so far and the work has been really what I like doing. I have also prototyped some parts for them. Unfortunately everything I have done with them has been under an NDA so there is not much I can share. A few months ago I had a project I was doing for them that justified getting a 3D scanner (HP 3D Scan). I actually only bought the software to use with my own hardware but that first job paid for it so I'm really happy about having this capability in my shop and no debt from it. Here is one of the first scans I did below. They were really impressed with the outcome of the last project they have a new project lined up that will use the scanner I am waiting to get started on.

    3d_scanning.jpg

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  19. #31
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    Back in August I was working on digging the footers for the new house. We got a bunch of rain and it was no use working in the mud so I took the dirtbike out for spin only to come off a little jump sideways when I put my leg out and came down on it fast and hard. I think my leg bent out to the side at my knee joint but I can't me sure. After a couple of weeks of trying to walk it off my wife convinces me to go to the Doc. Turns out I tore my ACL and meniscus. The part in the center of the image below that looks like a frayed rope ends used to be my ACL. I had surgery that next month so that set me back a bit. I'm pretty good now but still not 100%.

    acl.jpg

    By October I was back in the swing of things. Here are some pictures of the shop foundation and framing.

    shop_foundation_01.jpg

    shop_foundation_02.jpg

    shop_foundation_03.jpg

    shop_framing_01.jpg

  20. #32
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    Here is a timelapse video I made from final grading through most of the framing. About three months of work condensed into about a minute.


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  22. #33
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    I managed to get a lot of the sides sheeted by myself with help here and there. Panels over 18' start getting really hard to manage by oneself especial if there is even a little wind.

    shop_framing_01.jpg

    shop_sheeting_02.jpg

    shop_sheeting_03.jpg

    shop_sheeting_04.jpg

    shop_sheeting_05.jpg

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  24. #34
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    Two of us knocked out the roof sheeting and roof insulation out in a few days. We finished the last panel on Saturday this week. There were some light snow flurries on and off during the day so we had to take a few breaks and wipe off the panels with towels a few times so we wouldn't slip and fall but we got it done. The next day I went out and put on the ridge cap trim. It started snowing about half way through so I had to keep a towel with me everywhere I went on the roof to wipe off a path to step. We got a light snow three inches or so this Monday before I finished getting the overhead doors in. Tuesday and Wednesday I managed to get the last of the overhead doors in.

    shop_sheeted.jpg

    Good thing I got the building dried in when I did because we got a big storm here that hit Wednesday night.

    shop_snow_01.jpg

    shop_snow_02.jpg

    I measured 15" on the ground outside the shop yesterday. My guess is we got about 18"-20" in two days which is a lot for this area. I have been living here for five years and the most I have seen at once was probably less than 6". I heard the last storm that wasn't even this big was back in 80s. I have 35" mud tires on my 4x4 and good thing too. Some of the drifts on the road and my driveway were probably closer to 2' or more. Someone else stuck their 4x4 truck with highway tires and he had to leave it and get some snow chains to get it out.

    shop_snow_04.jpg

    My 2wd dually isn't going anywhere for a while...

    dually.jpg

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  26. #35
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    Nice looking shop!

    Passed north of you wednesday night on I-40, from Kingman to west of Flagstaff was medium snow, thru Flag it became serious snow, last few miles was about 30mph and driving by braille. Pretty sure I was last one to get thru Flag, highway behind me was dark for over an hour.

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  28. #36
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    Nice thread Goldenfab. My wife and I spend part of our winters on the other side of the Aquarius mountains from you. We're just south of I-40 on US-93. Do you have any zoning issues with running a shop where you are at? In our area it's pretty much anything goes. There are numerous rules in our ranch but nobody seems to enforce anything.

    Keep at what you are doing and I see a bright future for you.

  29. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldenfab View Post
    Good thing I got the building dried in when I did because we got a big storm here that hit Wednesday night.
    I measured 15" on the ground outside the shop yesterday. My guess is we got about 18"-20" in two days which is a lot for this area. I have been living here for five years and the most I have seen at once was probably less than 6". I heard the last storm that wasn't even this big was back in 80s. I have 35" mud tires on my 4x4 and good thing too. Some of the drifts on the road and my driveway were probably closer to 2' or more. Someone else stuck their 4x4 truck with highway tires and he had to leave it and get some snow chains to get it out.

    shop_snow_04.jpg

    My 2wd dually isn't going anywhere for a while...

    dually.jpg
    Allison and I ended up in Payson today just to see the snow. She loves it. I am from it (no biggie).
    But, yea, holy crap! AZ got some "real" snow last week!
    I had fun in a virgin parking-lot in my truck. Been a while since I drifted a one-ton truck around for a bit, LOL.
    She was hooting and giggling the whole time! T'was a good day!

    Love your thread! This is good shit!

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  31. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by dalmatiangirl61 View Post
    Nice looking shop!

    Passed north of you wednesday night on I-40, from Kingman to west of Flagstaff was medium snow, thru Flag it became serious snow, last few miles was about 30mph and driving by braille. Pretty sure I was last one to get thru Flag, highway behind me was dark for over an hour.
    Good you got through. I heard they got over 30" in 24 hours.

    Quote Originally Posted by Big B View Post
    Nice thread Goldenfab. My wife and I spend part of our winters on the other side of the Aquarius mountains from you. We're just south of I-40 on US-93. Do you have any zoning issues with running a shop where you are at? In our area it's pretty much anything goes. There are numerous rules in our ranch but nobody seems to enforce anything.

    Keep at what you are doing and I see a bright future for you.
    I'm in residential zoning. I talked to the city about it and they said employees, signs, and increased car traffic are a no go. I told them I do design work from home and some machine work in my garage. They said it should not be a problem as long as I keep the neighbors happy. I mentioned welding and they seemed to have an issue with that so I agreed.

    Quote Originally Posted by wheelieking71 View Post
    Allison and I ended up in Payson today just to see the snow. She loves it. I am from it (no biggie).
    But, yea, holy crap! AZ got some "real" snow last week!
    I had fun in a virgin parking-lot in my truck. Been a while since I drifted a one-ton truck around for a bit, LOL.
    She was hooting and giggling the whole time! T'was a good day!

    Love your thread! This is good shit!
    I had fun getting out in it too. I took my wife to work in the 4x4 which turned out to be a good decision as the roads were not cleared for a while so we were plowing through as much as a foot of snow all the way into Prescott. I heard you guys got some snow down in the valley too!

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  33. #39
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    Pull the shades when you are welding, and the neighbors will be none the wiser...

  34. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldenfab View Post
    I heard you guys got some snow down in the valley too!
    Yea, we sure did. I went riding yesterday at Wildcat in N Scottsdale. And, we were riding in snow. It was Awesome!


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