“You can never find a horn when you’re mad”

This was the rationale Homer Simpson used when adding horn buttons everywhere in the car he designed for his long-lost brother, the head of a major automaker.

Homer Car

The episode came to mind as I was installing a power bar over the central work table in my shop:

PowerStrip

I’ll never say “You can never find an outlet when I need one.”

This monster is a six-foot long Tripp Lite 24-outlet power strip (part PS7224, and ordered via Amazon). I’ve mounted it to the bulkhead that contains the ductwork for our heating system – making a virtue out of a necessity. It installed in about five minutes, using butterfly toggle bolts.

The power strip has a 15-foot cord, which would stretch right across the shop. To keep things tidy, I plugged it into the outlet I plan to use, then mounted some rope tie-backs on the bulkhead – spaced so that the cord would stay up out of the way while still reaching the outlet:

PowerStrip Cord Storage

Most of the time, I’ll leave it unplugged, but I can unwind one loop of the cord to plug it in when I’m ready for power.

(Thanks to my friend Chris Abbott for finding this one for me!)

5 thoughts on ““You can never find a horn when you’re mad”

    • Hi Chris:
      It’s less about the number of outlets, and more about having an outlet close to the work – anywhere along the length of the work table. I should be able to find the perfect outlet to put a tool close at hand, while keeping the cord out of my face.
      The power strip has a built-in 15-amp circuit breaker.
      Cheers!

  1. You and I think alike; I have a four outlet strip mounted to the exposed joists above my mostly unfinished basment for a similar purpose (power for a work table). That strip is soon to be replaced with an eight outlet strip (already purchased) to provide more flexibility for plugging in tools and task lighting. Nice work, Trevor.

  2. I put in 16 plugs in dad’s new shop (2 circuits), plus a heater circuit, plus a 220 circuit for the big mill…and I am sure there STILL will be powerbars used. (and I added 2 lighting circuits too…all off a sub panel for the purpose). It is simply amazing how many plugs one has in a shop. There is drill press, lathe, mill #1,DRO for mill #1, power feed for #1 mill, Mill #2 (220v), DRO for #2 mill, belt sander, bench grinder, tea heater (* vital kit, don’t mess with it !) , magnifying light, air compressor, & I am sure more tools there.

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