Building Your Own RC Workshop to enjoy our hobby that much more
Entering the hobby most of us have picked up an RTR vehicle from our local hobby shop or online. Even though these turn-key R/C vehicles are RTR out of the box, eventually you need to turn a wrench on them for repairs, or the all-mighty upgrade path we all love to take to personalize and improve our rides. Sure, the kitchen table might be your first thought, and for a few of us (read: single with no kids or pets) that is certainly a viable option. However, as your collection of R/Cs grows and you start doing more and more wrenching, especially if you start building your own kits, you’ll want a dedicated workspace to do said wrenching; and if you have kids or pets forget it, there’s just no way to get the work done without a screw coming up missing or something getting broken.
A workspace can be something as simple as a bench in your garage or basement, or something as extravagant as an all new exterior building for your hobby. We’ve tried to work in the garage (living in Florida that’s rarely an option without having heat stroke), and our home doesn’t have a basement either. With R/C vehicles in just about every room of our house—yes, I had three cars in our master bedroom—from a collection totaling over 18 vehicles, boxes of spare parts, bodies, electronics, tools, and more, it was time to do something about the situation. While this may not be necessary for those with one or two cars and a heated/ cooled basement, I opted to install a 10×16 pre-fab shed in our back yard. The shed itself was around $2,000 and being the initial investment was also the most expensive part of the project.
Due to budget constraints and life in general getting in the way, it took the better part of three years to finish the shop the way I wanted it as funds allowed. The shed became a true workshop with insulation, wiring, drywall, paint, lighting, and eventually moving in some workbenches, a computer, storage for my R/C collection, and more. Now, when I have a repair or upgrade to tackle I step off my back porch and make the 50 feet walk to the workshop and disappear for a few hours. If I have to stop for whatever reason, I can leave my tools, parts, hardware, and so forth right on the benches, shut off the lights, and lock the door. I couldn’t do that before working on the kitchen table; especially with two cats!
While we don’t expect everyone to spend several thousands of dollars building a free-standing RC workshop, it may be the right option for you if you have no space to work on your vehicles and you have a need to store at least ten or more vehicles and you don’t want them all over the house. What we hope you’ll take away from this walk- through of my shop build is that wherever you work on your RCs that you need the space, the right tools, proper lighting, and more. So take a look at what we’ve done here and use it to plan your workspace/ workshop or add to your existing work area.
By Mark Houlahan