Limited Space Shops

A how-to on working in a shop with limited space.

by RK Campbell

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Sometimes less is more. We downsized a few years ago and have really lived this. The children are grown and the grandchildren occasional visitors. A camping cot takes the place of a third bedroom. I have downsized my workspace a bit. My jobs these days are one at a time. I don’t have a list of projects waiting – other than writing projects – and I am very selective what I take in for repair. When the firearm comes in the work is done as quickly as possible. Sometimes there is a wait for parts and if the project is long term it is a personal project.

The work area and workspace bears some discussion. Our home is 116 years old but has been adapted to a home business along with upgrades over the decades. The porch needed serious rebuilding – it should have lasted more than a hundred years, I suppose – and the wiring and plumbing is modern. The guns are secured in a safe, as they should be. The parts are neatly stored in bins and an old food larder in the back room serves for ammunition storage.

I have worked with limited space most of my career and have picked up some tips that help. It is ideal that we begin our career working as an apprentice to an experienced gunsmith. This isn’t always possible. Many of us get our education online, in the service, in schools – and the “by God and by gosh” method is still viable. With success, we move into gradually larger quarters. At some point we need to learn to make do with what is available and, increasingly, that isn’t much. Property is at an all time high. I would hate to be a young person looking for a home or a business site at this time.

Here’s how I optimize my shop space.

Read more in the March 2023 issue.

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