Workbench Build #44: Dog Holes and The Sliding Deadman

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Blog entry by Airframer posted 08-26-2013 03:19 AM 11329 reads 3 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 43: Finishing the Base and Flattening the top.... Part 44 of Workbench Build series no next part

Last night after flattening the bench I couldn’t wait any longer to get some holes drilled in the top. I have been kinda dreading this part because it is one of those permanent type things in a major component of the bench.

Earlier I had mentioned that I didn’t have a 3/4” auger bit for my brace…. well that turned out to not be true lol. The problem is that I can’t math. Turns out I have a 12/16” bit and for those of you following along that simplifies into 3/4” DOH! Why not just label it 3/4”!!!

So I laid out the holes 3 1/2” on center and started drilling….

And drilling…..

And drill.. well you get the picture. 16 holes total. This went surprisingly quick and all the holes are “mostly straight” good enough to hold a dog in place or a holdfast.

Then I stood back to admire my handy work when I noticed a layout error.. well 2 to be exact. I had measured 3 1/2” between dog holes just fine except I started the measurements from the END of the wagon vise instead of the center of the dog on the wagon vise. That leaves a wide spot between the vise and the first dog of almost 5” . I might have to come up with a creative dog solution to bridge the gap there.. not sure at this point.

The other issue is my 3 holdfast holes none of which line up with a corresponding dog hole. This will make producing a plane stop difficult but not impossible. Oh well.. you live and learn.

Then this morning I started on the Sliding Deadman.

Rummaged through my lumber pile and pulled out a piece of 4/4 cherry that fit the bill. and cut it to fit into the space between the top and front stretcher.

Then squared it up and flattened the faces using my new holding ability! Soo much fun!

Then tried to figure out what to do about the rail. I remembered a pair of half round strips that were cut off of the boards I will be using for the shelf.

That should do nicely as long as I can figure out a way to make a matching cove on the deadman.

I stared at it for a bit and realized the cove would me roughly the shape as a half round file. Clamped it into my legvise (giggity) along with the cut off from it to act as a fence and I got the cove started with a half round rasp. Once a grove was started I cut a short piece or the rail and wrapped some 80 grit around it and shaped the cove to fit the rail in this manner. Worked out pretty good. Finished it up with successive grits of 150 and 220 and whalla a nice cove to ride upon the rail!

Then I fit a tenon to the top in line with the groove ont he bottom of the top. Attached it with glue and finish nails from the backside and to my very pleasant surprise it actually slides very effortlessly and aligns nicely with the top!

Then I prepped the stretcher for glueup of the rail and cut out a door for the deadman to be installed or removed from.

As for the hole layout on the deadman it’s self I was flying blind on this. I decided to use the 2 holdfast holes in the leg as a starting point. I wanted at least one hole to line of with one of those so measuring it out gave me a starting point. The holes are spaced 2” apart with 2 rows of 1” holes for my Stanley #203 and a corresponding set of 3/4” holes for other bench accessories.

I had to drill offset recesses for the #203 to mount into.

Hit the sides of it with my round over plane and swiped my #3 across the front a couple times to smooth it out and remove the layout lines and BOOM a sliding deadman!

Which equals a complete usable workbench :D !!!!

Click for details

Thank you for following along. There will probably be one more entry as I get the shelf installed and some finish on it but I’m going to go build some stuff on this now and worry about that later :D

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

5 comments so far

View WayneC's profile


13754 posts in 4121 days

#1 posted 08-26-2013 03:22 AM

Wow. What a great build. I joined in late. Guess I will need to go back and read the entire series. :)

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View waho6o9's profile


8207 posts in 2601 days

#2 posted 08-26-2013 04:06 AM

Well done Eric, thanks for sharing.

View RaggedKerf's profile


425 posts in 2145 days

#3 posted 08-26-2013 01:09 PM

Great work man, loved the method on the sliding deadman!

-- Steve

View Mauricio's profile


7144 posts in 3176 days

#4 posted 08-26-2013 04:57 PM

And another beautiful splayed leg bench is born! Great show Eric, you will love it!

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

View chrisstef's profile (online now)


17423 posts in 3031 days

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

I cannot comment any further until Bondo pose is completed.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

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