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Blog series by HungryTermite updated 02-01-2012 07:56 AM 13 parts 38279 reads 60 comments total

Part 1: Entering the Design Phase

01-22-2010 04:48 AM by HungryTermite | 7 comments »

I just finished “Workbenches” by Chris Schwarz. I really enjoyed the book and it gave me a boost of motivation to get started on my workbench project. I enjoyed his writing style, his humor, as well as the little bit of history that was sprinkled in. I saw the quote somewhere years ago that “A man that does not know the history of his trade is continually forced to reinvent the wheel”. I tend to believe that. My current workbench is a folding table from costco. ...

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Part 2: The internet is great

03-05-2010 07:30 AM by HungryTermite | 5 comments »

Let’s see, I haven’t really written any blog posts lately because I have been bogged down with work and grad school part deux. However, since I spend almost every waking minute not spent on those other things thinking about my workbench project as well as many countless hours on the CAD system, I thought it might be time to update some of my thinking on the design features I am thinking about as well as mention something I thought was really cool. Internet is cool moment #1. ...

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Part 3: Tail Vise Mockup

01-01-2011 08:28 AM by HungryTermite | 4 comments »

Well, after a VERY long break from actually working on my new bench (and some other projects) I have finished my second Masters degree and can now get back to more important things. Even though I wasn’t able to work on anything it didn’t keep me from thinking, and dreaming, about my date with Monsieur Roubo. I have had the 6”x6” wood for the legs in the garage for about 6 months so it should be dry enough for me to start on some of the joinery and I purchased 4”x6” wood for the stretchers a...

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Part 4: The Final Design

02-15-2011 08:10 AM by HungryTermite | 7 comments »

Ok, enough procrastinating! It’s time to get on with the workbench. I have a design that I am happy with and while I haven’t quite finished the CAD model I think I can safely start cutting some wood. As I stated in previous posts this is a Roubo bench and I used a lot of information from a lot of places. I have purchased all the wood and a good deal of the hardware. The top is going to be made from 10 foot long 4”x6” douglas fir. It should finish out at...

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Part 5: Check Please

02-16-2011 07:30 AM by HungryTermite | 4 comments »

I now have essentially all the wood for the bench, at least the major pieces. I still lack a chop for the leg vise and I am not sure what I want to use for that. The legs have been hanging out for over 6 months and everything else has been around for about 2 months so far. Everything is construction grade Douglas Fir from Home Depot and Lowes. It actually took me a while to gather up all the wood and I feel like I visited just about every store in the Los Angeles area. 1st of all, most...

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Part 6: Hello Tearout My Old Friend

02-17-2011 05:05 PM by HungryTermite | 4 comments »

I don’t know why but I have S&G stuck in my head, hence the title for this entry. I started milling the legs! After putting some epoxy on all 4 sides of each leg and then scraping most of it off with a carbide paint scraper, I started jointing the blanks for the legs. Here you can see one of the longer blanks with my two Home Depot push blocks (a.k.a. grout trowels) and my Harbor Freight infeed and Rigid outfeed set up. The Harbor Freight roller stand was only $14 but I have m...

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Part 7: Laying out the legs

02-28-2011 06:21 AM by HungryTermite | 1 comment »

Yesterday I took the leg blanks back to the jointer and the planer and got them down to a hair over 5” x 5”. One of them ended up a hair under. I found out during this process that the depth stop on the Makita planer does not handle anything 5 inches thick so it was a little tricky to try to get all 4 pieces exact. All that will be left to do on these is to hit them with a smooth plane to take off the plane tracks, which are barely even visible. It will also fix the “...

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Part 8: New leg vise hardware and a design revision

03-02-2011 06:50 PM by HungryTermite | 5 comments »

I decided in January that I really wanted a wooden screw for my leg vise. I jut like the way they look and they seem to work just the same. So, I placed an order for a screw and nut from Lake Erie Toolworks and they finally arrived yesterday! The screw is beautiful. I assumed there would be some chipping or tearout on the threads but they are perfect. It basically arrived in a condition ready to be finished and installed. I am thinking just some BLO and wax will be the finsih. ItR...

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Part 9: Roubo needs some legs

03-06-2011 03:38 AM by HungryTermite | 2 comments »

Today was a fun day! 1st up today was to put the holdfast holes in the legs. This started on the back side of the legs buy counterboring a 1-3/8 hole using a forstner bit. The depth of the counterbore is 1-1/2 inches and this leaves 3-1/2 inches of leg left for the holdfast to grab on to. The Grammercy holdfasts I have supposedly do not work well in pieces thicker than 4 inches. One of the holes lined up with a large knot that was filled with epoxy. You can see here just how far down ...

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Part 10: Custom brass dowel nuts for my bench bolts

03-07-2011 04:15 AM by HungryTermite | 5 comments »

I took a short break from wood today since I will quickly run out of things to do until my new Tenon Saw arrives. One thing that needs to get done is to make some dowel nuts for the bolts that will hold the long stretchers to the leg. There are a couple of reasons I wanted/needed them to be custom. 1st was that I couldn’t find any that were sold separately from the bolts. Most of the “bench bolts” I have seen for sale are only 6 inches long and I needed 8 inch bolts si...

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Part 11: Moving right along... finally.

12-29-2011 07:57 AM by HungryTermite | 1 comment »

So… after almost 300 days and some major life changes since my last post (including moving and having to set up the “shop” all over again) I finally got back to my Roubo. I’ve hit the point in this project where it is starting to test the limits of my tools, my skills, my strength, and my patience. When I first started this project I tended to let the design drift to the heavier side thinking that the extra mass would be good. While this is probably true, once the b...

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Part 12: Laminating the Top

01-31-2012 09:14 AM by HungryTermite | 8 comments »

The time has come to start making this thing look like a bench. In order to make the short stretchers I need to know what the final width of the bench is going to be. I am mostly playing the length, width, and thickness of the top by ear since I didn’t know how much I was going to have to remove from the construction grade wood I used. I purchased the pieces for the top 1 year ago so they have had quite a bit of time to dry out as well as bend and twist and warp. There are also some...

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Part 13: Leg Assemblies Complete

02-01-2012 07:56 AM by HungryTermite | 7 comments »

Now that I know what the actual width of the top will be (23 1/2 inches by the way) I was able to cut the short stretchers that connect the front and back legs: I decided to try to drawbore the legs with 3/8” pegs since the short stretchers will be attached permanently. I had already drilled the holes in the legs so all that was left to do was to mark the location on the tenon so the holes could be drilled. I couldn’t get the stretcher all the way into the mortise for som...

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