Four friends and I drove down from Minneapolis to Cedar Rapids for the 2015 Handworks Event. I was quite pleasantly surprised by how good it was. We were only there on Friday, but it went on for the whole weekend. Wow, where to start! Lots of vendors, Lots and Lots and Lots of tools, and many well known names in the woodworking community; Chris Schwarz, Roy Underhill, Ron Hock, and many more that you would recognize. Here is a really blurry picture of me with Mike Siemsen. Chris S...
I put in an eleven hour day yesterday on this thing, the work was really kind of fun compared to the tedious work of digging out mortises of the day before. I’ve never tried the draw bore method of locking a mortise and tenon together. I didn’t even use clamps. Well this morning I just had to get the tops to fit on the tenons, so after trimming back a couple of mortise surfaces they both fit down snugly, a very sweet fit. As a bonus, the sides of the tops ended up flush wit...
I was out in the shop/garage at 8am today and didn’t finish until 7pm. I don’t recall taking a lunch break, or any break for that matter, the day just flew by. But I did get a while lot done. Yesterday was all fitting the mortises and tenons. That took all of yesterday and I left it dry fitted together. This morning I had five things to do before I could drill holes for the draw bore joints. I ran the legs across the table saw to chamfer the bottom edges, check the leg v...
Yesterday I took the end cap and cut out two mortises first using a spade bit and then chiseling it square. I had to trim the tenons down a bit to fit in, and when I was squaring the small mortise, part of the end grain wall broke away leaving me with a big gap. I really didn’t want to make another end cap and do all of this work again, so I think I’m going to go with it for now. If I decide later I can’t live with it, I can just take it off and make another o...
(Edit: I’ve posted this as a project, too. Here.) This will be the final blog post of my bench build. There wasn’t much left to do. I finished the shaping of the chop and deadman, which mostly involved adding roundovers, fairing curves and sanding. Then I applied a coat of Waterlox: To assist with grip, it helps to add a facing of leather to the inside of the chop. Fortunately, part of the Benchcrafted package. Sized almost perfectly. Roughed up the chop face and appli...
If figured it would be better to work on the vise install on the leg before the bench was assembled. Heeding my own advise, I read and re-read the install instructions again before I started. First thing I realized was that the leg vise install is as much about the chop as it is about the leg. Makes sense – a vise isn’t much with just one surface :-) So I glued up a board to use as the chop: The chop needs to be at least 2 1/2” thick and I all have is 8/4” board...
After the success tweaking the installation for the end vise I hoped the good karma would continue to the leg vise. Not so… It All Starts With A Small Bonk… I removed my chop from the clamps, removed the glue and jointed/planed to size. the final size was about a 2 3/8 thick – plenty. I determined the centerline of the chop and leg and clamped the chop directly to the leg. I transferred the hole locations to the chop. The it was off to the drill press. Simple. While at Marc Adam...
After class the bench parts were loaded into the truck and brought home. I have a double right angle entry to the basement steps. One of my classmates, Sean Baker of San Diego graciously volunteered to help get the heavy top into the basement. It was heavy, but surprisingly, not all that challenging; considering it was Friday at 5pm and we were wiped from the marathon week.assembly-1 Assembly Once all of the parts were in and organized we got right to the assembly. It really is a qu...
I’ve been planning a workbench build for two years, maybe a bit longer. Started by reading everything I could, followed by some quality SketchUp time. Had a design, changed it. Tweaked it again. Threw the design out and started over. More tweaking followed. And so on… Settled on a Roubo variant, and ordered Benchcrafted hardware. A year and a half ago. Complete re-design once again. Did a couple tweaks to that and ordered the lumber. Should be well-acclimated to my shop by n...
Installation of the wagon vise hardware – very easy to follow directions! Gluing up the paduak for the leg vise. If you are going to use the crisscross system, ensure you have a minimum of 2 1/4” final thickness on your vise as the cavity routed for the hardware is considerable. Plywood top is in place and vise hardware is partially assembled. Couldn’t resist trying the hardware out after the right front leg was drilled for the holdfast clamp...
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