They key to neighbors is to move into a rental house where the previous tenants hosted loud parties that went until the wee hours of the morning and ended up with people passed out in the street. Then you come along with your machinery, and the neighbors are happy to have that noise instead! =] We do limit the hours we use the equipment, and have talked to our closest neighbor multiple times and verified that it doesn't bother them. We are not too far away from Techshop Menlo Park and also head there for some things that it's just not practical to do in the garage. We also find valuable the interaction with the other people at the Techshop, getting advice from them, seeing their projects, etc.