Shop Class #4: Shop Student Seeking Plans

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Blog entry by Tooldads_apprentice posted 10-08-2008 02:36 AM 1923 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Tools of the Trade Part 4 of Shop Class series Part 5: There is a First for Everyone »

Hey Lumberjocks,

I am a shop student here in Missouri. I have sent a few of you messages about your projects and I thank each and everyone that replied. Now to the rest of you, I need a little more help. My shop teacher, tooldad, has assigned a project for my class. We have to find varriations of our projects. Well, I am building an English Garden Bench, the very same one that Norm built on the New Yankee Workshop. So my question to all of you is, if you have made an outdoor bench of some sort, if you could send me a few pictures and possibly some dimensions, I would be very greatfull. Just send me an e-mail to Again, thank you to those who have already helped!

Thanks again Lumberjocks, Nathan

P.S. I get extra credit for any plans that I get as well.

-- Your not a true woodworker until you blow your nose and saw dust comes out! (WoodWorker Rule)

6 comments so far

View oldskoolmodder's profile


801 posts in 3680 days

#1 posted 10-08-2008 05:25 AM

Nathan, I wish that I had something to help you, bud. I’ve never built a garden bench, so therefore am of no help at this time, but as I recall, you guys are here in town, STL, so don’t hesitate to ask me for any help if you need it for anything else.


-- Respect your shop tools and they will respect you - Ric

View tooldad's profile


660 posts in 3715 days

#2 posted 10-08-2008 05:45 AM

Nathan’s is honestly my over-achiever in class.

The district just spent almost $1M on our shop building last year (summer 2007). It used to be a pole barn with no AC, just a couple of ceiling mounted gas heaters, which didn’t really do the job, and the dust collector quit working before I started there. It was built as a temporary addition in 1976, guess 30 years is temporary?

It has taken a year and a half of little projects, and some not so little, to get the shop operational. Example, clamp racks, tool room cabinets, just hanging cabinet doors on the drill cabinet, rerouting dust collector pipe since we have changed tool locations to be more efficient.

I wouldn’t have gotten half of this stuff done without his help. However I know he loves being in the shop.

Nathan picked the bench project for a challenge, and I admire him for that. In fact I am having the shop budget purchase treated pine lumber for a prototype and hope to recoupe the cost by selling to a staff member in the spring. This way he gets to try it first at no cost. Not too many of us LJ’s get that opportunity.

View oldskoolmodder's profile


801 posts in 3680 days

#3 posted 10-08-2008 05:56 AM

back in the early 80’s when I graduated from High School, I did build a small bench for the garden for J.A. We sold them for a whopping $10 each, but nothing elaborate by any means, just treated lumber. I bought one, because I liked them, even if they were simple. It lasted about 15 years before I gave up repairing it.

I’ve taken a look at the bench in question and it looks like it should be a nice project, and easy enough to get sold.

-- Respect your shop tools and they will respect you - Ric

View FlWoodRat's profile


732 posts in 3909 days

#4 posted 10-08-2008 12:39 PM

Nathan, Sorry, I don’t have plans for this little bench, but thought you might want to look at it and perhaps steal some ideas. 98% white pine. 2% cherry (leg screw hole covers on corners). It’s about 19 inches tall, about 18” wide and 32” long. All the rails, stiles and top slats are a full 1” thick. the legs are 2”x 2”. Simple construction. Attach the rails and stiles to the legs with screws then cover to hide. The top pieces are screwed to the frame, then plugged to conceal (one screw, each end, centered to allow for movement). Have fun and Im sure ToolDad will be proud of your efforts. See Link to project.

If the bench is going to be outside, you may want to consider a different wood.

-- I love the smell of sawdust in the morning....

View Woodchuck1957's profile


944 posts in 3764 days

#5 posted 03-01-2009 05:42 PM

I have the Lutchens bench plans from Norm, can’t remember what I paid for them. I never did use them because I found a well built teak lutchens bench cheaper than I could buy the wood for. I think a good source for various plans in a school woodshop would be a subscrption to Shop Notes.

View juniorjock's profile


1930 posts in 3765 days

#6 posted 03-02-2009 03:09 AM

I agree with Woodchuck1957. Lots of stuff in Shop Notes.
- JJ

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