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The Quest for a Better Bench

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Blog series by PlanBWoodworks updated 11-19-2017 08:05 AM 8 parts 6611 reads 12 comments total

Part 1: Where I started and where we’re going...

10-23-2017 03:27 AM by PlanBWoodworks | 0 comments »

Workbenches. We all have them. We all love them. Are we ever satisfied with them? Probably not. Or at least, I’m not. I guess to fully appreciate my current journey, you should know where I began. I don’t think that I have a photo of my very first workbench. At least, not one readily available. However, I can paint the picture verbally. I wanted to start reloading. For those of you who are unfamiliar, reloading is building your own bullets. This was back around 2010 or so. Anyone who is a...

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Part 2: The best bench so far...

10-26-2017 12:22 AM by PlanBWoodworks | 4 comments »

After building the last iteration of Workbench 2.0 (technically, I guess I should call it Workbench 2.1), it did not take long for me to decide that I was still less than thrilled with the final outcome. In addition, I had delved further intro the land of woodworking, and had also acquired a jointer and planer. YouTube was filled with videos of people making workbenches with laminated tops. Thick and heavy, it seemed clear to me that this was the type of bench that I wanted to build. Ja...

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Part 3: The search for inspiration...

10-28-2017 03:22 AM by PlanBWoodworks | 1 comment »

As I stated in my previous blog, my first laminated top bench was as solid as anything that I could have hoped for. That being said, before I had even finished building it, and I dare say that I am not the only one that does this, I had already envisioned what I would do differently if I ever built another bench. I built the first laminated top bench to be approximately 48” long by 36” wide. I wanted to have a lot of surface area, but did not have a lot of space for a long bench. Also, th...

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Part 4: Construction begins...

11-01-2017 08:39 PM by PlanBWoodworks | 1 comment »

I had to temper my desires when it came to dimensions, features and materials in the design of workbench 3.0. Again, I wasn’t going to be building the bench from anything fancy. Good old southern yellow pine was good enough for my first laminated top bench. It has held up amazingly well (with the exception of various stain/shellac splatter). Very few scratches/gouges/dents have marred the surface, and what has could be easily cleaned up with a little planing and sanding. In addition to ...

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Part 5: Mortise and Tenon Joinery... Just writing that makes me feel like a SUPER WOODWORKER!!!

11-05-2017 12:56 AM by PlanBWoodworks | 1 comment »

DISCLAIMER!!! THis post only contains a small portion that relates to Mortise and Tenmon Joinery. It just made me feel all tingly to include that in my title. Sorry for misleading you. At the end of my last blog entry, my workbench top was in the glue up stage. I glued up the top in 4 sections that would allow me to combine 2 and BARELY be able to run them through the planer. I was shooting for a top that was 60” long and 25”wide. both 12 1/2” sections maxed out the capacity of my De...

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Part 6: Final Assembly and Finish!!!

11-08-2017 06:43 AM by PlanBWoodworks | 3 comments »

After cutting the mortises, tenons and all the dadoes in the legs, I felt like I was in the home stretch. The first thing that I did following all of the cutting and milling was sand EVERYTHING to 320. Probably further than necessary, but I don’t think anyone has aver said, “Man, I wish that I hadn’t sanded everything so well.” Anyway, after sanding everything down, I started thinking. If you are anything like me, you know how dangerous that can be. I decided that I was getting nervous...

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Part 7: The last part...

11-12-2017 01:43 AM by PlanBWoodworks | 0 comments »

So the bench was DONE. I was very happy with the way that it turned out. It was solid, it was heavy, it was visually appealing and it was going to be around for a long time. Just in case you don’t remember what it looked like: Ok, I’ll admit, I just wanted to show it off. Anyway, because I was so pleased with the bench, I decided to rearrange my entire shop. This led to some storage issues. Also, the bench that I dismantled to make room for the new bench was the bench where I mou...

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Part 8: The end - for real this time... I think...

11-19-2017 08:05 AM by PlanBWoodworks | 2 comments »

In the previous entries of this blog series, you have, if you have punished yourself by reading all of them, been taken through the inspiration and design, the material selection and the construction of my new work bench. Then, you were dragged along as I constructed a tool cabinet underneath the bench top. God bless you for your patience. I was very happy with the look of the bench and my new drawers. Unfortunately, it became clear to me that my aesthetically pleasing new bench was...

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