For quite some time I have been contemplating a workbench that I could pack in the car, with a small set of tools, so I could do a bit of handwork during my lunch breaks. The thing that has always stopped me is the worry of wood movement due to the temperature extremes in the car. But when I think of it I don’t want to do my major projects out there, even if I just practiced joinery I think it would serve the purpose of helping to ease my stress levels.
So here comes the tricky parts that in my long and drawn out way I would like to put to you. How to create a bench that is solid enough for handwork and yet can be broken down quickly and placed flat in the back of my CRV? The second part is, how do I create the bare essential tool kit for what I am trying to do?
My initial thoughts in the bench are a Japanese Beam stile bench, or a tuned up Workmate (I have an ancient one from Gramps). I have about as close to a zero budget as you can get (maybe $50) as this is a side project and my real extra money goes towards good tools or wood.
Speaking of good tools, I do not intend to put any of my really good tools in the car as I would hate to see that investment get stolen. I also think I will have to go with steel planes as opposed to my custom wood ones based on the temperature swing issue.
Here is my bare minimum tool kit. If you see anything that is obviously missing or that can be pared out please help me out. I plan on making a small box out of southern yellow pine or something from my wood pile if I can find something suitable.
Dovetail Marker (my Veritas, the artisan flamingo is staying on my bench)
Block plane #4 smoother
“1, 3/4”, 1/2”, 1/4” chisels
400 and 2000 “stones” (mdf with automotive sandpaper attached)
Stubby flathead screwdriver
Hand Drill And a few bits
2 12” quick grips clamps.
-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan