Dan's Blackbutt Roubo Bench #2: The Design Process

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Blog entry by DoctorDan posted 03-01-2010 10:46 AM 6706 reads 1 time favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: The Beginning Part 2 of Dan's Blackbutt Roubo Bench series Part 3: Timber & The Initial Cuts »

The decision to go Roubo
After my initial research, I like many woodworkers, fell in love with the roubo. My old benches were designed to be portable or were made from old desks. They never stood still. Planning, even chiselling would cause them to move about. There’s something rather solid about having 5”x5” legs.

Originally, I thought I could do most of my work on a 3’x3’ bench. All my heavy chopping/sawing on a solid base and use work horses to support large pieces. Then I thought 2 benches 3×3 would be good… I still think this would be a useful and practical solution. After some discussion the final decision was more a more traditional 8 1/2’ by 2’. This allows you to reach over the workbench, and also can support long pieces required for table construction.

Vice Configuration
I debated vice configuration for a while. Options included:
1. Leg + Shoulder
2. Leg + Wagon
3. Simple Quick release
4. Leg + Sliding Leg
5. Leg + Sliding Leg + Wagon
6. Leg + Pattern Makers
7. Quick release + Pattern Makers

After reading a number of reviews, and discussing the issues at the Australian Woodwork Forums it was obvious that people loved wagon vices, pattern makers were expensive, and a quick release or leg vice didn’t make too much difference to function.

The final decision was; leg, sliding leg, and wagon. A tax break at the same time enable me to pick up the benchcrafted models.

The Sketchup Process
The sketchup model then underwent 6 major re-visions.

-- Daniel -

4 comments so far

View degoose's profile


7233 posts in 3350 days

#1 posted 03-01-2010 12:07 PM

Keep posting I am still reading..

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View Paul2274's profile


330 posts in 3108 days

#2 posted 03-01-2010 05:18 PM

Can’t wait to see the pics as you go along.
Nice design and a lot of thought.

View 559dustdesigns's profile


633 posts in 3163 days

#3 posted 03-02-2010 10:55 AM

Wow, anyone using those beautiful Bench Crafted Vises is definitely building a serious bench I can’t wait to see this thing progress. Thank you so much for sharing this project.

-- Aaron - central California "If you haven't got the time to do it right, when will you find the time to do it over?"

View kenn's profile


810 posts in 3715 days

#4 posted 03-02-2010 08:53 PM

I’m liking it, keep going cause a bench will help you do more than anything else could.

-- Every cloud has a silver lining

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