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Setting up my first home studio


#1

This is my first attempt at posting a question to the Orchid, so I’m
not sure if I’m doing this correctly, but here goes:

I am learning basic goldsmithing to allow me the flexibility of
creating custom components for my mostly craft-like jewelry. I am
now sufficiently SOLD on working with silver that I am looking to
set up a home studio that would include a place to do hot work,
fabrication and perhaps use PMC down the road. I am currently
getting some insurance quotes and starting to plan what to include
and how to set up my new space.

I have had a look at the jeweler’s bench exchange, but find the
photos a bit difficult to interpret sometimes. So while I am waiting
to get my insurance in place, I thought I’d ask those of you with
existing studios for your “top tips” or “lessons learned” for
setting up a studio (e.g., make sure you meet the fire code).

So far I plan to include:

  • a sink
  • a place for soldering
  • a ventilation fan
  • a beading and assembly table
  • a heavy work bench for fabrication
  • a Foredom (right now I only have a Dremel) - any thoughts on
    buying used equipment?
  • storage for beads and other components
  • a computer work station

Any other thoughts, tips or advice on how to get the most from my
space would be greatly appreciated.

Best regards,

Deanne Cotton-Cornwall
Healing Hands Designs
Calgary Alberta


#2

Make your space flexible, your needs will likely change over time.


#3
Any other thoughts, tips or advice on how to get the most from my
space would be greatly appreciated. 

Sounds like you’ve thought it out.

Map your space out on paper and think about the traffic patterns. You
don’t want too much wasted time going back and forth, but neither do
you want it so that you never have to get up. Force yourself to get
up, stretch, rest your eyes.

Elaine
http://www.CreativeTextureTools.com
Hard to Find Tools for Metal Clay


#4
- a Foredom (right now I only have a Dremel) - any thoughts on
buying used equipment? 

A Foredom lasts so long, why skimp? And they don’t show up used
because everyone uses them forever. Grease appropriately, do routine
stuff.

If you want a cheaper one that will withstand hobbyist use, buy from

Elaine
http://www.CreativeTextureTools.com
Hard to Find Tools for Metal Clay


#5

Hello Deanne,

Congratulations on your home studio. You mentioned "

So far I plan to include:
- a sink
- a place for soldering
- a ventilation fan
- a beading and assembly table
- a heavy work bench for fabrication
- a Foredom (right now I only have a Dremel) - any thoughts on
   buying used equipment?
- storage for beads and other components
- a computer work station

Can there ever be too many electrical outlets??? You will also need
space for a buffer and tumbler. Good lighting is critical - I like
Dazor adjustable lights. Think about your flooring too - there have
been some good discussions in the archives about color and material.
What about a comfortable adjustable chair on casters. Don’t forget
mounting racks for your pliers and hand tools. It’s really good to
think about efficiency of movement. Try to set-up equipment so that
you can easily roll to it or rotate around to it… gee, that sounds
like you should have everything in a circle around you. :slight_smile:

If you can visit some studios, you’ll learn a lot about how
equipment can be placed. Good luck and post a photo of your studio on
the bench exchange!

Judy in Kansas, where the moles are tunnelling everywhere!!

Judy M. Willingham, R.S.
B.A.E. 147 Seaton Hall
Kansas State University
Manhatttan KS 66506
(785) 532-2936 FAX (785) 532-6944


#6

Also remember, that things can be changed, too! Set up your studio
as you think it will work, but if something isn’t quite right down
the road, you can change it. You really seemed to have thought of
much of what you will need!

Good luck!


#7
If you want a cheaper one that will withstand hobbyist use, buy
from Contenti.com 

You can also find less expensive tools etc. from Micro Mark.


#8

Sounds like you’ve got a good start.

The basic rule of a home shop is you won’t have enough room or
enough light. No matter how you set it up to start you will change it
and then change it again as you acquire new equipment and new skills,
so don’t worry too much about where you should put what at first.
Just get it up and running as soon as you can and sort it out as you
need to. If you’re worried about holes in walls and floors and that
kind of thing, you might want to reconsider. It will tear up your
spare room and most likely the hallway leading to it as well.

You might want to consider some cleaning equipment like an
ultrasonic, steamer and pickle pot as well. Used equipment is fine,
as long as it’s not worn out internally. It can often be impossible
to tell what kind of shape it’s in until you plug it in and try to
use it, so beware. I stick with buying used equipment that isn’t
prone to wear I can’t see, like hammers, draw plates stakes, etc.
Anything electrical or with internal moving parts I buy new with a
warrantee unless I know where it’s from and how it was used.

Good luck and have fun. Most fun I ever had was working out of my
home. The only problem was I couldn’t go home from work!


#9

Oh yeah. One more thing. Keep your computer as far away from your
polishing station as you can. In fact, it might be a good idea to
keep it in a different room. A jewelry studio can be a very dirty
dusty environment, especially in a small room, so anything that
doesn’t do well with dust and dirt will not do well in your shop!

Dave