Monday, March 30, 2015

My Hobby Area

 Over Spring Break my son and I spent a good bit of time cleaning up my "Man Cave" both to make some room for him and his projects (which includes a 3D printer) and to appease my wife who has become concerned that our house is being transformed on an accelerating basis from a standard home to a storage facility for miniatures and their related debris.  Personally, I didn't see anything wrong with that but I'm not the one who calls the shots on these things....
2 years ago I did splurge a bit and purchased a commercial workbench from American Workbench (their Ben Franklin model) to use as my painting station.  Having a fixed "work" location is very useful and when cleaned up looks very presentable and serves as a great staging location for game nights.


 My game room is dominated by the table, which was built by yours truly and has served me well over the years.  It's a bit beat up for its days as a robotics workbench when my son was in high school but she's still in good working order.  There is a built pair of book shelves which are usually in disarray.  The table top is 4' x 8'.

Currently the wood is unfinished furniture grade pine and my wife would like me to dress it up a bit - perhaps add some decorative framing and cherry stain.  I think that will be an early fall project.
 There's a good bit of storage under the table which is accessed via sliding doors on either side.  Most of the storage is used to hide the lead and plastic mountains from prying eyes....

One thing that needs to be addressed is that there is no rails to hold dice, drinks and reinforcements  along the sides.  I've got a project in the workshop to build some "L" shaped trays the will attach along the sides.  Each tray will be 4 feet long and when attached will form a shelf.  They'll also be able to be flipped over to provide a playing area extension so the total playing surface can be expanded to a 5' x 9' space

 I did build a mini cabinet inside the workbench for miniature trays.  This unit has enough space to hold 2,000 28mm infantry figures (mounted on 20mm square bases.  It's currently filled with a range of stuff including my 15mm Flames of War collections.
My wife allowed my one set of storage cabinets, which I find very useful.  Sadly, they are pretty much filed to the brim and additional storage units are forbidden by executive management.  At some point I'll need to sell some of my stuff to make room for other stuff.  Most likely to go first will be my Romans and Dacian collections which occupy the bottom shelves of the middle two units.  They haven't seen the playing table since the last time I ran a Hail Caesar game at Historicon - which was in 2012!

In terms of future game room projects, In addition to the trays described above, my other "big" gaming project will be to finish a set of sectional terrain units - I started that project last summer and will need to complete it by July'15 in order to put on my planned games at Historicon.


 To be honest, I think both the game room and  table were happier when they were used as a robotics building platform.  All of the boy scouts in this picture are off in college now studying to be some type of engineer from left to right - Virginia Tech (Mining), Carnegie Mellon (Robotics) and GA Tech (Mechanical).  All three got scholarship offers so there was some good from their robotics addiction.
The robotics field has been replaced by a nice card table and the storage cabinets for miniatures - again a bit quieter and less damage prone but not nearly as fun!

8 comments:

AJ (Allan) Wright said...

Those display cabinets could surely receive 2-3 more shelves each.

Paul Robinson said...

I do envy you Americans who seem to have so much more space in your homes than is traditionally the case on this side of the pond. I think most of us here in the UK would relish the opportunity to have a set like this Miles.

styx said...

Paul, not all of us have a house like that! I have a small 1200sq foot home, my hobby room is packed....

I am totally jealous of this setup, my wife would have NO issues with this room setup if I had it....she thinks mine looks like the Star Wars trash compactor....

On the topic of that, I think all spouses think we just have a pile of stuff and junk...and well yea, it is to a point (some of the materials we horde) but damm it's fun!

Where did those display cabinets come from? IKEA? I may have to hunt those baby's down....

styx said...

Oh yea, you can make some more space in the display cabinets by moving the two with trophies to a shelf on the wall for them....wife can't complain about displaying awards...

Paul Waechter said...

What a fantastic set up! I'd love some display cabinets like those one day :-)

Paul O'G said...

That is indeed a superb and inspiring setup Miles - disturbingly neat perhaps though! (mine usually looks normally looks like trash compactor also, but tun it also doubles as a garage/tool shed)

The display cabinet is excellent and I agree there is lots of space for new shelves there. I've done that before and the local glazier will cut the shelves to size for you very cheaply.

Finally, I am shocked that you are considering getting rid of minis just because they haven't been on the table for 3 years. Some of mine haven't seen daylight (literally) for a decade!

Michael Peterson said...

What a brilliant workspace, with a very handsome table. Fully of happy memories too, I see.

Eric Lott said...

I too would love to know where those display cabinets are from.