Well, I’ve started on my workbench build…I’m going ahead to start writing this blog even though at my pace (a few hours a week), it may take a few more months to finish.
Here’s the general goal…I’m sure it will evolve a bit as I build it:
This bench has a few design parameters that contribute to it’s odd look:
-It has to fit in my small workspace in the corner of the garage, so 5ft is the length.
-I want my Anarchist-style tool chest to roll underneath it when not in use, so that means no front stretcher…the apron will have to compensate in holding it steady from racking.
-I wanted to keep using Pipe-clamps as my twin-screw vise, so holes were made to accomadate for that.
-I plan to use a press-screw for a wagon vise.
-I want the bench to be dirt cheap…that means I hope to spend less than $50 on it, including buying the lumber!
This is the lumber: Three ten-foot 2×10’s from the big box store….
...Stickered to dry a little bit…
Marking the lines for ripping. I ripped it all into thirds (about 3”) except for one 5-foot board that will become the front apron. That equals about 50 feet of ripping…30 feet done by hand-saw (took about an hour), then I got lazy and ripped the last 4 cuts (20 feet worth of cuts) on my cheap table saw (took about 5 minutes once I got the saw set up.
Ohio Tools wooden jointer plane…face-planing the boards for the top glue-up. I completely ignored the rough edges from the rip cuts at this stage, deciding they will be evened out later when I hand-plane the bottom of the top, and the top of the top.
The top Glued up!!! I did this in about 3 stages to get to this point…leaving various gaps and openings in the top will prevent me from having to chop mortises later. Some are for legs, some are for the movable parts of pipe clamps, and some are for over-sized dog holes (1.5×1.5 square). Each Dog will be large, and able to serve as it’s own bench stop, working with or without the wagon vise.
This Picture shows an example of how the pipe-clam-vise will work. The movable part of each clamp will be inserted into the top of the bench, with easy access for adjusting.
Test-fitting 2 of the legs in their mortises. The rear legs were cut at an angle, then I saved the cut-off which will be inserted in the gap created at the top of the bench, serving as a wedge of sorts.
THAT’S WHERE I’M AT SO FAR! Sorry for the Cell-phone quality pictures. Hopefully I’ll get some time to put on the apron, and get the base put together soon.
Thanks for reading!
-- I'm strictly hand-tool only...unless the power tool is faster and easier!