So many hobbies, so little ____

Recognizing that I’m coming up on the two year anniversary of this blog, and not having written anything for a while I thought that I should provide on update on the world of the guy who’s interested in too many things.

C. and I have recently moved. Our previous landlord got tired of maintaining the house (as if they had done any at all…) so decided to sell the place. While they were kind enough to give us first dibs on buying, we didn’t really like the place and were thinking of moving soon anyway. Plus we’re a long ways from being able to afford to buy anything right now.

So we’ve moved into a new place, and while it’s been recently remodeled it’s not any bigger than the last house. I finally get a room to myself as an office, though, as we decided that we don’t have visitors often enough to warrant setting aside one room just as a guest bedroom. As a result I’ve got a bit more space for my activities, but still not enough. By the time I squeeze in my roll-top desk, some bookcases, the stereo, a work table, and “Chairy”, my Lay-Z-Boy recliner reading chair, the room’s pretty full.

Usually when I talk about my too-many hobbies it’s a case of “so many hobbies, so little time/money”. But the restriction also includes space.

I had been intending to dig out my bookbinding equipment and get reacquainted with that hobby after having had everything packed away for the past seven years. But I need more space. Bookbinding requires a workbench, storage space for paper, boards, and other supplies, and a place for large tools like a shear (large paper cutter) and various presses. It really needs its own room. If Chairy and the bookcases could go in the living room I’d probably be okay, but that room’s full too.

I had recently dug my ham radios out of storage after a couple of years of being off the air. I started this hobby when I lived in Ithaca; the town had a very active club that did a lot of community service activities, and as I was living alone at the time it was a great way to get out and socialize with a great group of guys. In Ithaca I also had lots and lots of room for antennas. Our new place, not so much. The roof is just beyond reach of my ladder, and it’s pretty steep too, so I’m reluctant to get on top of the house to install the 2 meter and HF antennas. The lot size is too small to string a wire for anything beyond 20 meters. Other than an antenna it would work, as the radios themselves don’t take too much space in the corner of my office, but lacking an antenna the radio’s not much use.

One thing that I do have now is a two car garage. In the previous house we had a really nice basement, but only a single car garage which, after lawnmower, snow blower, bicycles, yard tools, and motorcycles was pretty full. Now with double the space I might have enough room to do something.

(I’ve also got to store some furniture in the garage, though. In the previous house we had some furniture stored in the basement, but this won’t fit now because of the narrow stairs going down to the new basement. We had also intended to put some pieces upstairs here, including some bookcases, but they wouldn’t fit up the stairs that turn halfway up. Did I mention that C loves older houses?)

So I have most of a garage, minus the space to store furniture. I’m obviously going to build a workbench very first thing – a favorite project I learned from my Dad, a basic design constructed of 2×4’s and plywood, with a pegboard for my tools. I’ve built a few of these, including a super deluxe model at the bike shop. You really can’t do projects of any sort without a good workspace and easy access to your tools.

Beyond that, and some shelves and hooks for storing tools and boxes of stuff, I’ve got a bit of room to work with. What should I do with it? Try my hand at bicycle frame building again, perhaps, or rebuilding/restoring an old motorcycle?



About pininforthefjords

I'm pinin' for the fjords. That's all.
This entry was posted in bicycles, bookbinding, ham radio, motorcycles, tools. Bookmark the permalink.

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