Workbench Build #43: Finishing the Base and Flattening the top....

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Blog entry by Airframer posted 08-25-2013 01:17 AM 2276 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 42: Attaching the Base #1.. Part 43 of Workbench Build series Part 44: Dog Holes and The Sliding Deadman »

I FINALLY found enough free time between work shifts to get the back 2 legs and side stretchers attached. Since I glued up the toolwell before installing the back legs I wasn’t going to be able to drawbore them into place so I decided to wedge them instead.

So a couple relief holes and a bit of saw work later they were ready to go but first I needed to do the long stretcher.

Again, drill and offset the tenon.. make some pegs and get all my ducks in order for this operation since it will be time critical once it is started lol..

Then I bashed some pegs and applied glue to the leg tenons and fit it all up..

Then I had to quickly flip the bench and remove the saw horses, add glue to the wedges and pound those into the two legs before the open time on the glue was up… that was fun..

Then I made sure everything would line up and boom! There’s a bench in my shop suddenly!

After that I glued in to side stretchers and let it sit overnight.

This morning I started on the permanent install of the leg vise. I needed a hole in the back leg to allow the screw to pass through so I threaded it in just till it touched the back leg and marked a line around to the other side.

Drilled a 1 1/4” hole through there and re-installed the chain to the vise. The I needed to flush up the top of the vise with the bench top.

Then I couldn’t resist a test run lol..

Still needs some leather on the shop but this thing holds like crazy! And the Chain Vise hardware does it’s job superbly! It just opens and closes with no fussing with pins or wedges and such.

If any of you are interested in this system for your bench give Jim aka Boatman53 a message and he will get you set up.

Here she is with the vise installed..

Then I decided to skip ahead a bit and flatten the top before the deadman. Seems it would be easier to use the bench to make that and to do so I need some dog holes.

I used a straight edge to check for low spots and found a nice hump down the center of the bench.

So with a little love from my #3, #5, #6 and finally the Craftsman #7 I was both tired and satisfied with calling it flat enough.

That was also fun… said no one ever lol..

So there are 2 more things off the list which grew by 1 over night because I realized I didn’t add the base assembly to the list for some reason. So it became # 2.5 lol.

Now to get my brace setup and ready for some dog holes :D

-- Eric - "I'm getting proficient with these hand jobbers. - BigRedKnothead"

7 comments so far

View Buckethead's profile


3194 posts in 1869 days

#1 posted 08-25-2013 02:25 AM

Looking fantastic. Chain vise is badass. Grain in top… Beautiful. Joinery… Manly. Galoot index readings are tweaking the meter.

Very nicely done, Eric.

-- Support woodworking hand models. Buy me a sawstop.

View Don W's profile

Don W

18718 posts in 2568 days

#2 posted 08-25-2013 12:09 PM

The end is sooooo close. Very nice.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View theoldfart's profile


9704 posts in 2452 days

#3 posted 08-25-2013 04:39 PM

Please lotta pics on the dog holes. You gotta 16” sweep?

-- "With every tool obtained, there is another that is needed" DonW ( Kevin )

View Airframer's profile


3043 posts in 1954 days

#4 posted 08-25-2013 04:47 PM

I have pics but am withholding any new pics till she is finished (spoilers and all lol). Yes I am THAT close :D!

Not sure what you are asking about sweep? Do you mean brace sweep?

-- Eric - "I'm getting proficient with these hand jobbers. - BigRedKnothead"

View lysdexic's profile


5254 posts in 2624 days

#5 posted 08-26-2013 02:51 AM

I assume that he is talking about brace sweep. It takes a lot of torque and elbow grease to drill a row of dog holes in a solid oak bench top.

If it helps, I took a chunk of cut-off and drilled a 3/4” hole nice and square at the drill press. It was about 3” thick. I then used that as a jig to get the dog holes started. Once the dog hole was an inch or so deep, I free handed the rest of the drilling. I did use the dewalt cordless.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - out_of_focus1.618

View Mauricio's profile


7144 posts in 3152 days

#6 posted 08-26-2013 04:46 PM

Looking great man! Wow that screw is long, what is the capacity on that leg vise?

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Airframer's profile


3043 posts in 1954 days

#7 posted 08-26-2013 05:03 PM

The leg vise has a 9 1/2” capacity. I left the screw long on purpose so I could fit the length to the bench. I trimmed it up yesterday finally.

-- Eric - "I'm getting proficient with these hand jobbers. - BigRedKnothead"

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