My new work bench

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Blog entry by Tinnocker posted 02-21-2011 02:42 AM 1878 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

When my darling wife allowed me to use our family room as my wood shop I needed to make a bench. living on a fixed income causes me to be very creative in acquiring tools and materials. I have posted about Freecycle before so I won’t rehash that again unless anyone has any specific questions.

Anyway I did some dumpster diving and was able to get a few old solid wood doors, which I promptly took apart and made a down and dirty work bench. It was ugly and a bit wobbly but it served it’s purpose. Which was to get me started in wood working. last fall I came across some heavy 2X4s some one was throwing away, ( I guess they had more than they needed for their job). They were dirty and some were warped and so I tossed them into the van and away I went. They sat on the deck all winter, uncovered (except for all the snow!) but laying flat.

last week I came up with the idea that I wanted to make a new work bench. I have been using my Bailey #5 plane (the only one I own!) and my wood chisels, I recently learned how to sharpen those darn things with the scary sharp method, It works! They are sharp and very scary! I dropped my 1 inch chisel, slipped right out of my hand onto my left index finger and received 4 stitches for my efforts. The reason I wanted to make a new bench was to practice my joinery and needed a more stable bench.

I started looking around at all the benches shown here on LJ and then took several ideas and made a Google sketch of what I wanted then started looking for the materials I was going to need to build my new bench. I wanted to use 4X4s for the stand but I am broke and couldn’t afford them, so then I got creative.
I checked out the wood on my deck and after wintering outside in the snow they looked good enough to use.

First I cut them to the approximate length, (Longer! :) ) then I jointed one side so that I could do a good glue up. The next day I ran all the pieces through the jointer to get 3X3 stock. I then cut everything to size. I did all the mortises first then I cut the tenons, I made stopped chamfers on all the parts to give it a professional furniture look,made sure everything fit properly and assembled the stand. I assembled the stand with 3/8 X8 lag bolts I drilled a 1 inch deep counter bored hole for the bolts and after assembly I hot glued a 1 inch dowel plug to cover the bolt heads.
Here are all the pictures I took of the process. This was the first time I thought to document anything I made. (It was actually my wife’s idea, she’s the greatest!)
I hope you enjoy looking!

Today I reused the old top from my earlier bench, it is 2 slabs of thin veneered particle board together making the top 2 3/8 thick. I had some oak from another dumpster dive, (It was a very well made futon some one threw away, their junk my treasure!) and put an oak trim around the perimeter of the top. I also used some of that oak to make jaws for my vice. After sanding I painted the whole thing with polyurethane.

-- Ted, Browns Mills, NJ Darn! I cut it 3 times and it's still too short! I get ideas for things that I can make to make things easier for me to make!

5 comments so far

View Dave's profile


11429 posts in 2809 days

#1 posted 02-21-2011 02:51 AM

Looking good. What is going to be the maiden project?

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are."

View dufus7441's profile


60 posts in 2841 days

#2 posted 02-21-2011 02:56 AM

nice job on the work bench. great job.

-- Paul

View Tinnocker's profile


107 posts in 2970 days

#3 posted 02-21-2011 04:25 AM

Thanks for the comments guys! Not sure yet what the first project will be Superdav I have a bunch of ideas floating around in the old noggin or caboose where most people think my brain is located.

-- Ted, Browns Mills, NJ Darn! I cut it 3 times and it's still too short! I get ideas for things that I can make to make things easier for me to make!

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

20317 posts in 3074 days

#4 posted 02-21-2011 04:40 AM

Nice build process on that bench. You’ll really appreciate the most it because you made it yourself

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View lc48's profile


22 posts in 2658 days

#5 posted 02-21-2011 04:41 AM

did a good job. i know about the money thing,i had to stop working cause of cancer. but i want to buy that 12 in csms from harborfreight lol for a 100 dollar. i would like that new boch scms but i dont have 800 bucks

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