What’s a mancave?
I first think of some air-conditioned space full of leather recliners, with at least one each of the following:
- Beer dispenser or beer storage en masse
- Some kind of frat boy, high-fivin’ game
- Lighted neon sign(s)
- Flat-screen tv(s)
- Sports memorabilia or theme
- Every other sentence in the room starts or ends with “bro”
Yup. You were thinking the same thing.
But that’s what I first thought of—thanks to watching those makeover shows on tv.
Okay. But what is the original mancave?
Now you’re getting all smarty pants and thinking a real cave with skins and pelts and brontosaurus burgers.
Let’s keep it from the industrial revolution on, ‘kay bro?
It’s the garage.
And for the record, I only call it a mancave here, in this post, because…you know…search engines.
It just isn’t very manly.
You tell me.
“Hey hon, I’m going out to my mancave to dust off my doily collection.”
“Hey hon, I’m going out to the garage to sharpen my bowie knife.”
I’ve made my point.
Mancave Garage Shop Makeover
Actually, for those of you that follow us, you know the Dadand Florida contingency doesn’t even have a garage.
My little 1956 Florida home has a carport.
So I rent a garage/shop down the street.
And it needed some attention.
I’ve been busy in there for the past six months.
Got some new tools, built some new tools, and in general, I acquired a lot more stuff.
It started with this. I got a vice at a yard sale for $15 and cleaned it up, built a stand and gave it a coat of paint.
On the hunt for some fasteners for the vice, I stopped at Lowe’s and picked up this Valspar Premium Enamel Spray Paint in Primer Gray, which has paint and primer in one. It couldn’t be easier to use, which is great considering all the labor that went into everything else.
After the vice, I went completely overboard by making a stand and motorizing my sheet metal bead roller. It too got a coat of the Valspar gray spray paint.
I had to get my press brake off of the furniture dolly and up on a stand to be able to really use it. I built a rolling table out of some leftover wood. I wanted to get all matchy-matchy with the gray paint but I didn’t want to go through like 8 cans of spray paint. So…
I took the spray can back to Lowe’s and had the paint guy custom match the gray. I got a gallon of semi-gloss Valspar Reserve. From spray can to gallon can, the color matching couldn’t have been better. I purchased the gallon because I knew what I would be building next…some shelves.
Building 2×4 Shelves
So I needed some shelves. Here’s 3000-words-worth of why:
My shop was overrun by stuff. I had some mismatched shelves and junk on the floor. I needed to make use of the overhead area better—making room for some bro games I could play with my bros when the bros came over to drink beer. Nah. I just needed some shelves. So I looked back to Pete’s post on building 2×4 shelving in the basement.
I thought I’d do a modified version of that with my workbench tucked under one side of it.
How about a diagram? I originally drew this with a dull pencil on the side of scrap 2”x4”. No one would ever do that in a mancave. I would keep it dimensional to limit the number of cuts, so the shelves are 24” x 96”. I’ll make six shelves and fasten them to 96” high uprights.
Here’s the beginning of the first shelf. “Bro, what’s up with the boomerang?” I have a square there to make sure…well, that it is assembled square. I used 3” drywall screws to teach it a lesson about coming apart…errr…fasten it together.
The other five shelves, ready to get some bracing.
I marked all six shelves to pre-drill for some supports.
One down, 11 supports to go. And yes, some of my drills have cords.
Next, I did a whole bunch of drilling and driving screws.
And bam! Hey bro, that’s not a quad-level beer pong table. They’re Shelves. I ripped 3 sheets of ½” OSB in half for the shelf tops.
Remember this from exactly 10 pictures ago? Well, things were so tight in the shop I had to finish one of the shelving units, paint it, and put it in place so I could build the second half of the shelves. Again, I used Valpsar Reserve, color matched to my other shop tools.
I want to show what one coat looks like over OSB. This stuff covers great. And as I mentioned in previous posts, I am now a believer in the paint-and-primer-in-one thing.
I used a Shur-line tray with a 6” roller cover, 3/8” nap to apply the Valspar gray paint.
Voilà! (Bro, say “wah-lah”) Gray shelves. Now onto the second section of shelves.
I didn’t have any bros to help me and wrestling with eight-foot shelving by yourself is no easy task. I added some ledger boards and used some clamps to hold stuff in place until I could screw it together. That kind of stuff could never happen in a mancave.
Shaping up. Now to paint this side in place.
Already filling up with stuff. See that vice to the left? The gray is a perfect match to the tool stands—spot on. Valspar can be tinted to virtually any color. Want to match that pair of your favorite red high-tops? What about the color of the frat house logo bro? Couldn’t be happier. Now I need to paint my bench too.
Another angle showing the whole unit.
So the result of the makeover?
I reclaimed some space with some awesome shelves. And they fit the look with the Valspar Reserve paint I had matched to the Valspar Premium Enamel Spray Paint. It ain’t the prettiest space, but it’s a shop, not a mancave.
Disclosure: Dadand was supplied product and compensated to post about Valspar—a company whose products we love and use all the time. Despite that, the opinions expressed by Dadand are our own. To provide as much transparency as possible, Dadand makes every reasonable effort to disclose the source of all products and services reviewed.