The top of my workbench is a 4” thick torsion box: 3/4” birch plywood panels on either side of a frame of 2.5”x1.5” yellow pine members. When designing the top, these were my primary considerations: I wanted it to be flat and strong, and not too light. I wanted an array of dog holes. I decided that spacing them 6” center-to-center would be good enough for my surface vise. I wanted every dog hole to be in, or backed by, solid wood. That way, even if the h...
This is the first of a series of blog entries describing a mobile torsion box workbench I recently completed. I posted a project summary a few days ago (Mobile Torsion Box Workbench). The overall series will cover construction plans and details, material costs, and odds and ends. In this entry, I’ll describe some of the factors and thought processes that led me to build this bench the way I did. Some Background about MeI’m an occasional woodworker. I probably average three or f...
Well I figure I’ll introduce myself by sharing a new series to document my latest project… yet another router table ;). This one is… well, will be, a cross between Norm’s, chazmonro's here at Lumberjocks, and jasnance's over at Flicker. I liked the idea of trying a torsion box. I also like the idea of a vertical drawer to hang wrenches, inserts, and such. Yes I’m a newb (albeit and old newb), so if anyone sees any errors, or has any suggestions I’d apprec...
The Assembly Table has been in great use for the last months. It’s awesome to have a perfectly flat reference surface on which to assemble projects. However, one problem I’ve had since I replaced the top is the front vice. My old top was 1.5” thick and the front vice was level with the top. The new torsion box top is thicker (about 4”) and so the top of the vice sits about 2” below the table top. That makes it near impossible to clamp many things an...
Having a good workbench is a luxury beyond hope for my shop. It’s a 20×28 floorplan, but its full of machines and I have to garage our car every night. What to do? I needed something strong and stable, good and flat, but something I could get out of the way after a day’s work. It also needed to be light enough for me to handle. 50 years ago I wouldn’t have much trouble with heavy parts, but now, its definitely an issue. After quite a lot of modeling in SketchUp...
Since it may be another 2 years before I finish this, I can’t really post it as a project, so it’s going here.I’ve been using my Joe Woodworker vacuum bag and press for about 10 years on and off, and have done a lot of veneering with it. (See my kitchen in my Projects). But I’ve always wanted to build a frame press, to make it easier to do larger parts, and make sure my veneered panels were flat.At the same time, I’ve also always wanted an assembly table, as I t...
I am ready to replace the top of my workbench with a dead-flat Torsion box to ease assembly of future projects. I built my current workbench a couple of years ago from plans from Fine Woodworking. The base is made from laminated plywood and is very solid. I filled the inside of the base with 6 drawers which are full and work well. The top is 2 sheets of 3/4 material that has served its purpose, but is far from flat. Part of the problem (non flatness) also stems from the fact that...
Today I manged to cut all the parts for the torsion box assembly table top. I am constructing the internal grid out of 1/2” MDF. The space between grid components is 6.5”. The outside of the grid is constructed from 3/4” MDF and is 6’6” by 3’. The skins are 1/2” MDF and a top of 1/8” hardboard. I started by breaking down the MDF using my Festool TS55. I cut a clean edge, and then measured and cut a spacer stick that would be used for...
The original plans said to build this after building the carcass, but I am not one to follow every direction. So it was up first. Design was completed and away I go. Even though I decided to make the UTS out of plywood, I made the torsion box out of MDF to take advantage of the its dead-flatness. I shrank the dimensions a bit so the plywood face would be flush with the rest of the carcass. I also moved around the rails so the casters would line up with the hardwood inside supports. ...
I have been working on the design of the Cabinet of the RAS for sometime now. I finally got the Sketchup done for the frame of the Torsion Box. I have been working on it for several hours this evening and have many more details worked out but that is gonna have to be for tomorrows blog. The outside frame is of 3/4” MDF and the ribs are 1/2” MDF. I could as easily go with 3/4” ribs. But I think I will have minimum deflection in this configuration. Anyone disagree?
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