Co-Op Workshop

To Do List:
Chicken coops and tractors, shelving for tools and equipment, storage shelves for everything uder the sun, book shelves, workbenches, potting benches, trellises, display cabinets for the store, individual storage lockers for boots or what have you, seating, tables and booths for a dining room, repairs to the structures, building new structures, repairing items in the repurpose shop and more to do tomorrow.

Putting together the framework for operating several projects, a workshop would be put to use frequently.  We've got much to do and not a whole lot of cash to do it with.  Producing items we need from materials available will go a long way towards reducing costs.  Scavenging will give us a headstart with tools and supplies and quite possibly some materials to work with.  A small workshop with a few tools will give us some ability to take care of repairs and perform maintenance tasks.  Fixing a busted step is simple but we still need a tape measure, saw, hammer and nails.  A few more tools, we can build picnic tables.  A few more and cabintry falls into our spectrum.

Only a handful of power tools are essential.  A table saw, drill press, chop saw, router, and planer make up the core of a well appointed woodshop.  For repairs, hand tools are primarily used. Tools for painting are so cheap they are barely worth mentioning.  What we need most is someone handy.  All the tools in the world do you no good if you don't know how to use them.

We'll want safety procedures in place.  If you want to use the table saw, you must be signed off as being competent in its use.  The person signing off must be competent to do so.  You'll need safety equipment: your own safety glasses or goggles, ear plugs, leather apron, face shield, steel toed boots, or whatever else is needed for the task.  It's a good idea to use the power tools only when 2 people are present.  In case of emergency there is someone to go for help.  

With a workshop, there will be times the tools are sitting unused.  It would be a benefit to the people involved in the co-op to be able to come in and use the workshop for their own projects.  Perhaps you would like to build some nicknacks or crafty items, maybe an end table for your spare bedroom.  Here's an opportunity to save money by making your own furniture,  inventory for cottage industry, or fixing that old desk.  Personal use  brings the responsibility of providing your own materials and supplies.  We may have some materials available, but the co-op has first dibs (it saves everyone money).  If a fee needs to be charged to cover energy costs while using the shop, that would also be the responsibility of the user.  In my experience, power tools are turned on for a cut, then turned off immediately.  What drives up the energy bill is operating tools continuously, as with a sander, lighting, and heating and cooling.

This would be an honor system shop.  It may be necessary to keep small tools under lock and key, bringing them out by request.  Sign them out, sign them back in.  Time will tell how we run the shop.



Cooperative Enterprise, Plan Outline