Screw assembly The face vise screw mechanism is all DIY. Here are the piece parts. The hand-wheel has been kicking around my basement for 15 years. I remember buying it on Ebay for a project I never completed. It was too nice to throw away, so it waited and waited until now to find a purpose. The acme screw and nut I picked up on Ebay more recently. I cut the screw to length and drilled the hole that holds the hand-wheel setscrew. I found a 5 inch brass plate 1/2 inch thick also on...
Top Assembly The top consist of two sub-assemblies: The lower half and the upper. The lower half is made up of two plywood sheets glued together, edged with maple and joined using doweled bridle joints. The doubled up plywood is attached to the frame using a basic butt joint strengthened with 3/8” dowels and glued down with epoxy. I used this method because my wood was not wide enough for the desired final dimensions if I rabbeted in the panel. This simple butt joint gave me some a...
Leg Assembly Two leg assemblies are part of the support system for the bench. I was going to use glued up 2×4s, but found some 12/4 poplar, so sawed that to shape instead. The legs are 2.75” thick and 4” wide, and the top rail is 2.75” square. The legs are angled at about 15 degrees. The 2×4 approach would have simplified cutting the angled slots, but then you have the hassle of cleaning up the glued up legs. The large hunks of wood making up the legs give them a nice soli...
So I decided I needed to finally build a real woodworking bench for my new workspace. I got all the books by Chris Schwarz, checked all the back issues of woodworking mags and browsed the internet in preparation. Then the first thing I did was break one of Chris Schwarz rules. I decided to design my own rather then duplicate a historical bench. I think I had valid reasons. My workspace is small. I could not fit a long bench. A short bench means planning forces have a bigger impact, so I d...
My morning was taken up entirely by straightening out a snafu with my medical insurance co. and the doctor’s office. What a pain. Sometimes I wonder why I have health insurance. Anyway. . . When I did make it out to the shop, I had this cutoff piece of walnut left over from the leg vise chop that was perfect for the deadman. I’m not really done with it at this point, all I did was rip it and cut to length, cut a rabbet at the top and the V groove at the bottom. It fits right...
I didn’t write the final post last week as I was pretty busy with my 20th wedding anniversary. Last weekend I had planned on flattening the tops on my last day off but only got half of it done. I had decided to use the router to flatten it, using a sled and rails. I saw the technique on the Wood Whisperer video and thought it was a good idea. So I went to the big box and got two 2×6 kiln dried 8’ long boards for the rails. The first thing it to make the edges straight and ...
After a long morning drinking my coffee and thinking about alternatives to keep working, I drove to the lumber yard and got a piece of baltic birch to make the flattening sled out of. When I came back I took my bent saw blade out and put a crescent wrench on the bent tooth. I moved it about three times and I think it may be useable. I soaked it in simple green to get the pitch off and I’ll try it tomorrow. I’m expecting that it’ll be a little rough but that’s ok. IR...
So, my task today was to cut up a piece of maple I bought the other day to make the gap stop and get it glued up in the clamps and then go over to family for Easter dinner. I set up the band saw and set about resawing the board into two halves. It went fine for the first 3/4 of the board then it was binding the blade and was not tracking straight, and not wanting to cut. I made a couple of adjustments, everything else looked fine in the setup. It just wouldn’t cut and was binding hor...
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...
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