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Old 02-27-2011, 12:05 PM   #1
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Default Build Shop - where do you build?

Questions for everyone who is/has built a custom: where do/did you do your build (home garage, barn, driveway, etc)? I live in a condo type community so I have no place to build on site. My best thought so far is to find a warehouse in one of the industrial parks around here and rent it so the build can be done year round no matter the weather or time of day/night. The only downside is the monthly rental cost of the building and utilities, but this may have to be factored in the build cost of I want to make my dream a reality. I will be doing the majority of the work myself since I have have extensive welding/metalworking/woodworking/mechanical experience, so outsourcing to a custom manufacturer is not an option in my book (never mind the huge cost). Feedback and thoughts?
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Old 02-27-2011, 03:09 PM   #2
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When I did my first bus conversion (30 years ago) I made a deal with an RV repair facility to "borrow" one of their stalls in the winter months, in exchange for labor during their busy season. (I'm also half-assed inclined towards welding, metalworking, woodworking, mechanical, etc)
I worked nights & weekends both, on the conversion and on their RV customer units during the summer.
It turned out to be a fair trade and I didn't have to spend a lot of $.
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Old 02-27-2011, 05:15 PM   #3
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If you're in a area with lots of vacant warehouse or shop space, you've got lots of potential locations to contact. But if things in your area are "doing well" and there just isn't alot of vacant space, then you've got a challenge.

Having to pay for a place to work might keep you moving along on the project at a fast clip.

Try private contractors, fleet owners, and manufacturers. They just might have a spot for you. Good luck!
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Old 02-27-2011, 07:58 PM   #4
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Default Workshop space?

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Originally Posted by #90-GTSC View Post
If you're in a area with lots of vacant warehouse or shop space, you've got lots of potential locations to contact. But if things in your area are "doing well" and there just isn't alot of vacant space, then you've got a challenge.

Having to pay for a place to work might keep you moving along on the project at a fast clip.

Try private contractors, fleet owners, and manufacturers. They just might have a spot for you. Good luck!
There are plenty of empty warehouses and workshops around this area, so it would just be a matter of finding one at the right price and with the size to fit the rigs. Would also want it wired already to run welders and other equipment.
I'm still waiting for that bag of money to fall in my lap so I can start my project :-)
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Old 02-27-2011, 08:19 PM   #5
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we own a truck repair shop and do towing. using a back drive through bay for building. some times the guys are not happy when we run out of room but i'm one of the owners.
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Old 02-27-2011, 08:50 PM   #6
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I bought a storage condominium. There is a developer that built some about 30 minutes from my house: Boat RV Storage in Minneapolis . It's the million dollar idea. Maybe there is something like this near you? Aren't you going to need someplace to keep your rig once it's built too?
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Old 02-28-2011, 09:43 PM   #7
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Default Build Shop

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I bought a storage condominium. There is a developer that built some about 30 minutes from my house: Boat RV Storage in Minneapolis . It's the million dollar idea. Maybe there is something like this near you? Aren't you going to need someplace to keep your rig once it's built too?
I was thinking of a similar concept. Rent a large warehouse and divide the unneeded portion into stalls that I could rent to others needing a place for storage or projects. The idea would be to make enough from the subletting to pay the monthly rent. There's allot to consider though such as insurance, zoning, environmental laws, etc. I'm thinking much of this could be covered by a well drafted contract for any renters.
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Old 03-04-2011, 12:59 PM   #8
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I did mine in the driveway. The neighbors were not entirely happy about that... It sure is nice being able to walk out of your house and just start working. Even a 15 minute car ride to get to the shop would have added tons of time to the project. I suppose you would organize your work differently in that case though.
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Old 03-04-2011, 02:49 PM   #9
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I don't think the neighbors minded when you were testing the toilet in the driveway tho.
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Old 03-06-2011, 12:27 AM   #10
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I am building my motorhome in my home shop. The shop is 24' x 40' with the back 9' devided into two rooms. One room is for my noisy air compressor and storage. The other room, or area, is for my lathe and work benches. The shop door is 10' high and 12' wide with an overhead clearance of 11'. I will be building in three stages. First I will do all of the mechanical work on the truck then I will add 5' to the rear of the truck frame then build the floor framing and compartments below the floor. Stage two will be to park the truck outside and build the living quarters that will look much like a truck camper. The final stage will be to move the "camper" outside and back the truck under it. I also have a separate 24' x 14' garage that will help with tools, materials and stuff. I know I will spend a lot of time moving things out of the way. My finished motorhome will be 30' and my work area is 31' so I plan to pull the truck part of the way out each day to gain work space. I thought long and hard before deciding to try such a big build in such a small shop. I have built boats and trailers in to small of space in the past so I think I know what is in my future. I am sure at some point I will ask "what was I thinking". I am glad that I can do the work at home.
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