Garages don’t have to be dirty and uncomfortable; it is possible to have a perfectly organized and beautifully designed workshop with custom cabinets, bearable temperatures, lots of energy outlets, and interlocking floor tiles.
Garage For Motorcycles
You may like to spend time in your garage, but when you get that motorcycle lift at a comfortable height along with your other amenities, you may never come out!
Do you know what your “cylinder index” is? That’s the number of all of the cylinders in your garage if you added up the lawn mowers, cars, weed trimmers, air compressors, motorcycles, etc. Like having a low golf handicap, the higher your cylinder count is the more respect you get from other garage addicts.
Motorcycle lovers Chris and Pat Edgerton had a piston count in the high 40’s- an impressive number that needs an adequately-sized garage. When they were building a new house, they built a garage big enough to match. It was so big (28’x40’) that the neighbors thought it was a whole other living space. But what did the Edgertons do with all of that 1100-square-foot space?
They moved their office into their garage
Complete with internet access and telephone, having the office next to the motorcycles in the garage made the mundane tasks of ordering parts, research and operations manuals much more fun.
The lift made a difference
Being able to lift up the motorcycles at a comfortable working height allowed room for tool chests within close reach. When you get caught up in your passion of working on motorcycles, it’s easy to get lost in a project. Being comfortable in a place where you spend a lot of your time is a big necessity.
Get comfortable flooring
Standing on concrete for long periods of time can really do a number on your feet, but the snap-together polypropylene floor tiles are easy to maintain, inexpensive and way more comfortable to stand on. Plus, they are durable, self-draining and chemical resistant. They can interlock in whatever pattern you choose to match the décor of the rest of the garage- feel free to go with a striped, checkerboard or other type of pattern. They are easy to install (the Edgertons were able to place the flooring themselves in four hours) and unlike paint or special coatings, there’s no downtime in waiting for it to dry.
Keep your garage at a moderate temp
Mounting a space heater to the roof of your garage can help keep it warm without taking up any floor space. You can even consider partitioning off your collection from your day-to-day operations with a tarp to try to save energy.
Install lots of electrical outlets
To minimize the number of electrical cords all over the place, consider installing outlets every 32 inches apart on two different circuits (to reduce overloading). A ceiling four-foot fluorescent light fixture and windows can provide great natural light, and the increased number of outlets can make it easy to plug in a task light in darker areas.
Be more efficient and save your body from unnecessary stress
Mounting a TV and stereo to the wall, plus having your computer, internet and telephone all right in the garage saves several trips- and time- into the house. The easily-adjustable pneumatic motorcycle lift platform can save your back from all of that stooping and bending.
Flooring options and wall storage
Along with polypropylene tiles, rollout flooring and DIY epoxy paints and coatings options are available. Baskets and storage racks are generally found at most home improvement centers and can easily be mounted to the walls. Free up more space by hanging fishing rods, sporting equipment, wheelbarrows, and more from hooks.
The Edgertons’ custom furniture and extra storage space
When the Edgertons needed a break, they relaxed with their custom-made chairs, tables and even their BBQ grill made out of wheel rims. Cabinets provided storage space for air compressors, a heater and other utilities, keeping it out of sight but close by.
Having a hobby like motorcycle collecting can require a lot of tools and parts. For neat freak mechanics, all enclosed storage can help hide the clutter. MDF cabinets are well-priced and strong, which is what Chris Edgerton used in his own garage. Although he was able to go with 24” deep cabinets, most standard size garages can only hold 12-18” deep cabinets (if you still want to park cars in your garage). Cabinets that can be mounted to the wall or perched up a bit help prevent moisture damage and make cleaning a bit easier.
A half-height cabinet is ideal for maximizing the use of space. Only taking up a corner, you can keep a compressor and jack under it, the heater mounted over it, and the circuit box across from it. Then hang a ladder from it and put all of your random stuff inside it. Building a long row of 12” cabinets high above your head gets a lot of tools and accessories that you don’t use every day out of the way while not taking up that much space.
If you are an avid machinist, you’ll probably find that keeping all of your tools organized and handy will make your hobby more enjoyable. Mobile tool carts and drawer chests add to keeping order and efficiency.
Add your own unique touch
Go into the Edgertons garage and you probably can’t help but notice the Harley clock on the wall, the headlight-style fixtures, the Harley seat rolling stool, and other motorcycle-inspired accessories. Use your creativity to flaunt what you’ve got!