Shop picture thread.


Super Moderator and KD Blade Show Boss
My old shop as it started out.


This is what it looked like just before I packed it up to move back to Arkansas. I have no clue where anything is now.


McClellan Made Blades

Well-Known Member
AHHHH, wait a minute,.....A.C. in Idaho? Errrrr, ummmm, ....Ok, I'm in Alabama, no A.C. in the shop, but I do have it very cooled......... around NOVEMBER!!! Still be sweating like I stole something!!!!!! I'm just jealous!!! That's all, nice shop though, except you need more tools!!!!
The way I've got mine set up, it's great for losing weight, kinda like my own gym/wet heat sauna, knife making shop!!!!
NOT for the faint of heart! That's when my wife says that my NEED to make knives really shows! And that I'm CRAZY!!!
Once I've finished my renovations, I'll share some pics, Rex
BTW, I hope I'll have mine as well lit as yours, I doubt it will be as clean!!! It once was a barn, so that should tell you that it'll never really be clean!!!!

McClellan Made Blades

Well-Known Member
I got an awful lot of spring cleaning to do before I can take any shop pics :9:

James, Cleaning is a mistake!!!! I agree with Cliff, you need to shoot for an organized mess! After I do some serious cleaning, it does take a while to find everything. I do tend to lose items when I put them up...
Once I get my renovation finished, I hope I will be able to keep things a little better organized, AND the floor clean, I hate having stuff on the floor. I switched sides of the shop with my wife, she has more of a wood side. When I originally planned out my electrical, I thought I planned for enough plugs, NOPE! Not close, so after a couple more acquisitions, and winter set in, I not only didn't haver enough plugs, the plugs load wasn't strong enough for all I was trying to run on them. So this time around, I've got a plug-box about every 3 feet with 4 plug outlets in each box, plus I'm adding drop down boxes on one side for my grinder (so the back of it will be faced out the door), and metal bandsaw. Hopefully, I've planned better this time, heaters are the biggest problem because they draw so many amps and usually end up flipping the breaker, I've got dedicated plugs for heaters this time, well at least they will have their own circuit, so that should be a little better. I was fortunate, when the previous owners were trying to put power to the barn(my shop, now), they used a cable big enough to carry 10,000 amps, that's what I was told anyway. They had it buried before we bought the place, so I just put it to use! Thanks, Rex

Josh Dabney

How things change

I've posted in this thread before. Post number 79 on page 3, very nearly one year and 7 months ago. Things have changed so much I figured since I spent the last couple nights cleaning it'd be a good time to update the shop tour thread.

Here's the overview shot

The hot shop. The forge is on wheels so I roll it over in the aise when forging

Grinder bench

1 1/2 hp VSR disk grinder with Beaumont tapered disk

KMG with 3hp VSR mounted under the bench

Rigid 15" drill press / used belt storage

Dry erase board with heat treat programs and info

The workbench

There's always some interesting stuff laying around in knifemakers shops. Here we've got a Sandy Morrisey tapered shroud sheath, my performance test knife ready to test, and some digital calipers. The round wood is a recycled lazy susan that is now my leather working cutting and dying board.

The bench shelf. Stuff that gets used alot- utility knife, water spritz bottle, layout blue, import height guage (Enco regularly runs these 49% off so I got it for $85)

My latest toy- Boyar Schultz 612 Challenger manual surface grinder with home built belt conversion. Purrs like a kitten

The old Harbor Freight 4x6 bandsaw with a fancy foam seat

Vintage Harbor Freight 1 1/2 hp Mill Drill it was wired for 110v when I got it and it hasn't given me any problems so I haven't bothered to rewire it

Cant forget the Evenheat, ferric tank, and in the lower right 5 gallons of Parks #50

Lincoln 180C MIG welder

This thing is a real piece of work LOL. Vintage Craftsman 3600 rpm buffer with a slightly bent shaft

Lincoln Port-O-Torch kit

And finally I thought newbies would appreciate this shot of a pile of knives and blades that have been scrapped. Muffed grinds, cracked in brine, tested to desruction, practice performance test knives, hamon experimenting gone wrong, take your pick :3:

Now that I've aquired all this stuff I guess I better start using it to COMPLETE some knives huh.

I always enjoy others shop pics so I thought I'd share some updated ones of my own. I do have more additions planned for the future like a finishing bench, better buffing set-up, horizontal grinder, tongs, files, rasps, hydraulic press... etc etc etc. It truly never ends, LOL.

Take care Dogs - Josh
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McClellan Made Blades

Well-Known Member
Man thats a nice shop and I love that competition CHOPPER you have there, that is a beauty! All I want to know is how you kept your scrap pile so small? I could probably make some money on my scrap bin(s), had to start another, I don't know why I keep all of them, I guess I know in the back of my mind that if things get really bad, I'll have some steel that "could" be used, if things get that bad, it'll be time to start learning to speak Chinese!

Looks like you are well tooled, I love the surface grinder, I was thinking the other day, how hard it would be to build a manual surface grinder, you know one you'd have to crank and set the depth of each pass, I don't even know if that's possible, just a thought. Looking at yours, it would seem like a Coote type grinder setup, or basically a motor with a direct drive wheel and a contact wheel, set on an adjustable mount, with one of those double axis tables you add to a drill press might work, if I could figure out a way to adjust the height by 1/32 increments. Where are all the genuis's when you need one? And instead of a 2" belt, go for something more like a 4", 2" belts would be more practicasl, since I already have a lot of those, but a wider belt would give better results. Maybe instead of raising the height of the table, lowering the height of the contact wheel? Has anyone ever tried this? Sounds like (yet) another project, to go along with all the other ones I've got going on. I think I'll let that one simmer, I need to get what I've got done, so I can get back to making knives!!!! Great looking shop, and looks like your knives are looking GREAT as well, Thanks for sharing, Rex

James Terrio

Well-Known Member
James, Cleaning is a mistake!!!!

I generally break down and clean when I can hear my shop cat, but can't see her :biggrin: I don't understand why it takes me two hours to clean up and about 46 seconds of working to have a total mess again.

I do shop-vac under and behind the grinder daily... if you've ever had a pile of steel dust start on fire you'll understand why...:shush:

Josh Dabney


IG made his surface grinder so it CAN be done. I picked mine up for $350 with 2 chucks from a company going out of business in Orlando. I've done excellent by watching Craigslist religously when hunting for tools. I missed a smoking deal on a nicer machine for $400. Come to find out a knifemaking buddy of mine scooped it up which gave me a laugh and a smile. All told I've got approx. $530 in the SG complete with belt conversion. Of course I built the conversion from materials I had on hand including the idler/tracking wheel and already had my VFD set-up to run the 3-Phase.

I found everything I could read on surface grinders and grinding and belt conversions once I started shopping. From this info I'd say if anything a 4" belt would create ALOT of extra work OR would be far LESS accurate because of uneven belt wear. Not to mention finding suitable belts may be problem. In reality 1" belts are probably the best option. I went with a 2.25" contact wheel figuring I could just as easily throw a 1" on and run it.

I have pretty much kept myself dead flat broke for that year and a half buying tools or materials everytime I had 2 nickles to rub together, LOL. Even skipped Bladeshow last year so I could build my forge. I'm figuring sacrifice now and it'll payoff down the road. That coupled with my belief in getting the right tool for the job and learning how to use it keeps me poor but smiling :)

Thanks for the compliment Buddy, Josh

McClellan Made Blades

Well-Known Member
"when I can hear my shop cat"

CAT!?!?!? I seriously thought I was the only knifemaker with a "SHOP CAT"! I named mine Moran, in homage to the late, great, Mr. Bill Moran, the wife thinks I'm crazy when I ask him how a knife I'm working on is coming along....
This being Knife Dogs and not Knife Cats, ya know? I just thought that was funny, good on ya James!

James Terrio

Well-Known Member
We have dogs too but they're too goofy to be in the shop, they prefer to play outside. Slippy the Shop Kitty watches over me and keeps the mice and snakes under control. She likes to perch on my shoulder and watch me work... I wonder if I can get a little bitty respirator in her size?

McClellan Made Blades

Well-Known Member
We have dogs too but they're too goofy to be in the shop, they prefer to play outside. Slippy the Shop Kitty watches over me and keeps the mice and snakes under control. She likes to perch on my shoulder and watch me work... I wonder if I can get a little bitty respirator in her size?

With my former wife, now passed, we had a farm, we raised everything, rabbits, goats, Anatalian Shepherd (LGD's), and her passion, Appaloosa Horses, we had so many animals for such a long time, when I got out, I got rid of EVERYTHING! We don't have a good enough fence for a dog and I can't see tieing them up, the Anatolians stayed with the goats, seriously amazing dogs, and can kick some serious BUTT! My female was the most awesome dog, she had truly incredible instincts, that are natural, from 10,000 years of breeding. No real training involved other than what their parents gave them while with them. After having so many animlas for so long, I didn't want any, Moran came by way of my Mom-n-Law, he such a sweet cat that he's constantly under your feet, and at her ripe young age of 76, with a new knee, he was going to hurt her, so he got brought home. I must say that I already knew the male cats were usless mousers, but at least he still kills them, or chases them off, I haven't seen any since we got him. And where there are mice there will be SNAKES!
He does the same, sits right there with me when I'm working, he used to sit in my lap while i was hand sanding, but he's too big for that now, so he has his chair to sit right behind me, great company when noone else will got to the shop when it's 20 or a 100 degree's out there. Doubt they make respirators small enough for them, I can't keep a collar on him, so a respirator wouldn't be possible either! Thanks for sharing, I thought I was the only one with a "Knife Shop Cat", nice to see there are others that see the benefit a dumb ole' dog can't provide! :3:Thanks, Rex


Well-Known Member
Easy now, Rex! LOL

The dumb ole dog let me know when others were coming onto the property. And, more importantly, he didn't bother the sand in the casting area!
But he certainly was expensive to feed!

At one time I had both dog and cat.
Sampson was a St. Bernard, Sophie was a stray cat that decided to call the place home.
I forced them to play nice. Believe it or not, Sophie was usually the instigator! Let's see, 10 pound cat tries to boss around a 200 pound dog.
I don't think either one was dumb, but I do think Sophie was crazy!


Active Member
These are kinda self explanatory. My shop is housed in a double garage with a total floor space of 50 square meters.

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HHH Knives

Super Moderator
Oliver, Your shop is very nice. Way cleaner then mine!! :)

If I may ask, What is the large blue machine 1st pic in second row?


Well-Known Member
I would never get anything done if I had to search for tools all the time.

My kid makes it hard enough by leaving tools all over the yard when he works on friends cars. I found a 5 gallon bucket full of tools AND WATER.Now they are all setting in a bucket of OIL trying to loosen them up.
Now this just comes from an old fart, so don't take it personal, I have a standing RULE. If one of my children borrow a tool, they are responsible for returning it in like condition to the place they found it. If they don't, this old man lets them have it and still makes them do it. If they break a tool due to mis use, they WILL replace it with one of equal value. I value my tools and have tried to instill that into the guys that use my tools.

Hope it helps, but tools are just too dang expensive to be replacing or repairing due to someone else not caring.


Active Member
Oliver, Your shop is very nice. Way cleaner then mine!! :)

If I may ask, What is the large blue machine 1st pic in second row?

LOL, you should see it now! These pics were taken a couple of months ago after a quick revamp and spring cleaning. I'm really working my butt off to keep up with customer demands and the SA Guild show is in little more than 2 months so there's no time for cleaning.
The blue machine is an Adcock Shipley horizontal milling machine work in progress. I originally bought it to convert into a surface grinder but changed my mind so it will remain a milling machine.