Take a look at this spectacular North Carolinian estate belonging to my longtime garage buddy, Larry. For years, I have been a fan of Larry's clinically clean and expertly organized garage, but what impresses me even more is Larry's remarkable detailing work that he completes inside it. When I made the decision to feature garage spaces of others on my blog, I immediately sent Larry an invite and he graciously accepted. He furnished me with comprehensive responses to all of my questions along with quality photos that showcase the pristine environment he has created to pursue his passion for detailing.
Name: Larry Bishop
Location: Charlotte, NC
We moved to Charlotte from the DMV area in mid-2016 and built our first single family home. Construction was completed late August and I quickly started on the garage. Fortunately, the builder finished both garages and installed baseboards which gave us a great starting point. In the first month of ownership, we completed the epoxy, lights, and all the gladiator wall tracks/cabinets. Since we built the house, I spent the construction period researching and accumulating products which meant I had the bulk of the items upon move in. I originally met Rick on Garage Journal, where I spent a good amount of my research time. Yes, I went through all 88 pages of Rick's build journal and contributed greatly to his 630k views! I lost steam on my garage journal thread but the following is what I started:
Click here to connect to Larry's informative build thread on garagejournal.com
For the flooring, I selected ArmorPoxy's ArmorClad with upgraded clear coat. I had epoxy in our Maryland townhouse and it suited my needs very well. The ability to wash inside and easily clean up the floor was the main appeal. My wife and I did the install over a long weekend on both garages. Next was the Gladiator wall tracks. The back wall has 16'x4' of total coverage with the opposing wall having 8'x4' of tracks. I found a local wholesaler who bought returned Gladiator stock from Home Depot and I was able to secure the tool chest, large cabinet, and smaller cabinets at a great price. Those were delivered the second week after the floor fully cured. At this point, we've been in the house less than a month and the garage was progressing very quickly.
The master closet had a door to the unfinished attic space which extended over the primary garage. We had a contractor finish the attic and do a custom closet which meant I was going to lose access above the primary garage. For this reason, it was time to upgrade the lighting before the area was sealed. As of this writing, I've redone the lighting two times and finally happy with the end result. Ideally I would like to add more wall lights but I haven't found a cost effective solution. The current light configuration in the primary garage is six fixtures containing four T8 5K LED bulbs and one fixture containing two T8 5K bulbs. At this time I also had a another 20A outlet installed for a compressor. It's bright and shadows are greatly minimized. Since the interior of the house was being painted, it made sense to paint the primary garage. Four painters completed the task in a half a day, it would've taken me a month.
Next up was the water source. I had the builder do a rough in for a sink knowing that I wanted a hose bib inside the garage. A couple hours with a plumber and I had my utility sink and hose bib ready to go. I do have plans to redo this section as I want to upgrade to a stainless tub and hose reel, hopefully that can happen this year.
The secondary garage received similar treatment with matching epoxy flooring and wall tracks. Since getting my wife a wider SUV and having a baby, it made sense to give her the primary garage and S4 gets the single bay one. I do have some storage goals and possibly lighting upgrades in the works.
I like the garage to feel like an extension of the house. My original goals were simply to have a clean, well lit, and organized space to enjoy my free time and hobbies. Starting in my late 20's, motorcycles were my focus and the two bikes demanded much of the garage space in Maryland. After seven years, two accidents, nine bikes, and sixty plus track days I was starting to shift more attention to cars and detailing. In the summer of 2017, I started detailing professionally in Charlotte out of the primary garage. This decision was more out of fun and to get more involved with the local community since we were relatively new to the area. My career is in corporate finance but I really enjoy the tangible aspect of detailing. So I put my S4 and garage on display and I received my first client in Sept 2017.
Click here to subscribe to Larry's IG feed where he features his detailing work.
My biggest advice to anyone wanting to transform their space is to take your time. Figure out your needs and research till you're bored with the topic and then start. I spent the five month construction period simply reading and asking questions. My wife was a big help with layout and installation as well. Taking advantage of sales or used items can keep costs down, in addition to simply doing what you can yourself. Good examples being the floor and cabinets. I covered the near 1k sq ft of flooring for about $1.50 a sq ft as compared to $4 a sq ft for a local installer. All the cabinets were purchased for 40% off retail since they were overstock.
I want to thank Larry for taking the time to share the story of his garage with me. It is my hope that people will take inspiration from his garage and make the most of their own garages. If you would like to see your garage story featured on my blog, feel free to contact me. In the meantime, thanks for taking the time to visit this blog and be sure to come back soon because I have more amazing garage stories lined up!
After I parted ways with my RaceDeck Free Flow floor, there was a period of time when I was living with a bare concrete floor. Thankfully, it was only for a few weeks, but the experience left a mark on me and helped to solidify my belief that a modular flooring is a better option than an epoxy coating. These photos demonstrate the constant battle I face with water accumulating on the floor. After two weeks of having to watch where I stepped so I didn't track the filth all over the garage and into my car, I was relieved when my Swisstrax order finally arrived.
I understand that epoxy is the option some garage owners prefer, but not having to worry about where I step, or what I step in is a massive advantage, in my mind, to having a modular tile floor. My Swisstrax floor is always dry despite the constant snow that gets tracked in on the tires and undercarriage of my car.
While I do think epoxy coatings look nice, I would be constantly dancing around the garage trying to avoid slop and water and that's just not something I have any interest in doing.
After three weeks of suffering with a bare concrete floor, my Swisstrax floor arrived this weekend. Here are some photos of the install process and final result. I am very pleased with how things have come together. I need two Pearl Grey tiles and the edges weren't included with the order, so it's about 98% complete at this point. I am looking forward to putting it to good use and sharing my insights into its performance.
Here's a video I put together:
After many years, I have decided to part with my RaceDeck Free Flow floor. I found a local buyer who picked it up a few weeks ago. Living without a flooring system for the past little while has been terrible. I am really looking forward to installing my new floor soon. Stay tuned to see what I have planned!
Here we are in the middle of November and I'm starting to see photos of people experiencing winter, but it needs to be known the winter began in my neck of the woods on the morning of October 2nd! It was complete bedlam that morning, but I was totally prepared since I had installed my winter wheels a few days prior. The massive dump of snow lasted a few weeks and then we returned to mild Fall temperatures up until Halloween. We had a light dusting of snow since with more in the forecast. I hope the weather is treating you well wherever you are!
I didn't take any chances this year and installed my winter wheels in September. We experienced a significant amount of snowfall later in the month so I did the swap just in time. I do enjoy driving the SQ5 in the winter with the meaty Nokians. The gallery of photos below demonstrates the process I follow when performing a seasonal wheel swap. It is pretty awesome being able to do the swap in the comfort of my own garage with the QuickJack.
I enlisted the services of a local decal maker and had a batch of 6" x 2.5" decals made. I have only a few left. It is pretty sweet to see many of my fellow detailing and garage enthusiasts sporting the RAD logo in their own spaces! Feel free to contact me if you would like to order one for your own space.
I am happy to announce an exciting partnership with Adam's Polishes. I am amassing a full arsenal of Adam's products and have already been putting them to the test. I am loving their performance so far, and I really love the way they look on display in my garage. I can see why this company has such a strong and dedicated following. The products are top notch and the marketing team really knows what it is doing in terms of cooking up excitement.
With the support and encouragement of Carzilla, I have been working and experimenting with a variety of products from Gyeon. These videos demonstrate the application process and results of 1. Gyeon Syncro paint coating and 2. Gyeon Q2 Rim coating. I recently picked up several other Gyeon products and plan on completing a comprehensive detail on my SQ5 in the next week, once it gets dirty! Until then, enjoy these two videos:
While the owner of this sweet little Allroad and his family were vacationing down in Mexico, I saw working away on it for three days. In total, I put probably north of 15 hours into this project and I was impressed with how it came out. The video is on the long side, but it really tells the story of what I did to it. Enjoy:
The owner of the Infiniti FX35 I recently detailed dropped his first-gen SQ5 off for some RAD treatment. I didn't have the time or energy to make a video for this one, but I did do a short video for Instagram. It was a 8 hour job and the results were pretty good.
A good friend of mine found himself in a desperate situation involving the tires on his BMW 435i. He returned from a business trip and noticed that the belts were showing through on his front tires. A quick call late on Friday afternoon and the new tires were ready to roll on Monday afternoon, which is amazing turnaround.
I think running a staggered 20" setup on this car isn't the most practical way to go, but they do look awesome. Anyway, here's some photos from the install. I would highly recommend giving Shaun a call at (403) 465-0771 or dropping him an email at email@example.com if you are in the market for new tires. His prices were highly competitive and the service he provided was top notch!
I put a good twelve hours into this gorgeous FX 35. I just love these cars. I was extremely happy with the end result. Here's the video:
Following on the heels of the black R8, an Edmonton R8 owner popped down for a detail. I spent the entire day obsessing over this car and just before I was about to post the video, my MacBook crashed. For days I thought I had lost all the footage, but I was able to salvage it in the end. Here's the video and I hope you enjoy it:
I am experimenting with a new logo, but I am not completely sold on it. It was a collaborative effort between me and a Belgian designer I hooked up with through Fiverr. Currently, I have commissioned another designer to see what they can come up with, so hopefully they can come up with something even better. In the meantime, this is the new one:
I am in the process of planning out an exciting detailing project that will culminate with a Gyeon coating using their new "Syncro" system. I have no experience using products from the South Korean company, but I have only heard great things. The Syncro system is a two stage process that combines two base coats of their durable Mohs ceramic coating with a durable and flexible top coat of Skin.
I want to thank the owner of Carzilla for suggesting this coating and I look forward to applying it to the Daytona Grey paint on my SQ5. In addition to the Syncro system, Carzilla also supplied me with 1000 ml bottles of Prep, Iron and Wet Coat to ensure I enjoy optimal performance from the Mohs and Skin coatings.
It is no secret to anyone following my work that I have grown quite fond of Leno's Garage products. Recently, a sizeable shipment arrived just in time for summer. I have a number of exciting projects lined up for my summer break, and these products will play instrumental roles in all of them.
Who is Rick?
I'm just a guy who loves his garage, Audi, and detailing so much he blogs about them.
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