Farm Journal

Shop Journal

By Darrell Smith
May 19, 2007

With a million details fighting for attention as you plan a new shop, it is easy to take the wash bay for granted. But, the staff of Blue Diamond Farming Company-Ben Riensche, his father, Roland, and their employees Paul Martin and Andy Covington-spent as much time on the wash bay as on every other aspect of their Jesup, Iowa, shop.

They wanted to make washing equipment convenient and minimize maintenance on the facility. “That meant finding furnishings that would not decay or corrode in a damp environment,” Riensche says.

Light fixtures over the wash bay are protected by plastic covers to keep out moisture and prevent corrosion. Electrical wiring to lights run inside plastic conduits.

Mops and squeegees hang from stainless-steel brackets. Cleaning supplies are stored in wall-mounted mesh baskets, which will not collect water. The baskets and other shop furnishings came from Ikea, a world-wide housewares supplier.

Also from Ikea are mop buckets, which are securely stored on mountings fastened to the wall. The buckets let Riensche’s crew save leftover soap for the next wash job, rather than wasting it.

Wall mounts for the buckets and other items are made from 1″ sheets of PVC plastic manufactured by Industrial Plastic Supply. “The purpose of the mounts is to get everything out away from the wall so it won’t rot,” Riensche says.

Each plastic sheet is attached to lengths of track-like “strut” (a contractors’ term), which is sold at various outlets. The strut is fastened to nailers behind the metal paneling that covers the walls. “Strut lets you hang stuff without putting sheathing on the wall,” he says.

A car wash supply company, Dultmeier Sales, was the source of mat holders used to hang floor mats on the wall for easy washing. Dultmeier also provided stainless-steel wand holders with drains in the bottom.

For more on Riensche’s shop, which won the shop category of Farm Journal’s 2007 “I Built the Best” Contest, read Shop Journal in the March 2007 issue.

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