So I’ve decided it is time for me to build my first workbench. I’ve recently gotten into hand planes and have been needing a good workbench for some time. I currently have the old steel crating that my tablesaw came in with a 2” chunk of pine for a top. Not trying to be disrespectful, but I look like someone on drugs swimming the 300 meter freestyle medly when I try to plane something. One foot on the base, one on the plane and one trying to keep the piece from sliding aroun...
I managed to get started today and got a lot done, even with a short break to scramble some eggs for my wife (she’s in nursing school and works damn near full time, so I do most of the cooking). I started out by clearing some room on the MDF sheets I’d laid out last night. I put a few of the 1×4’s I bought under the sheets to keep them off the garage floor. I figured this was the flatest surface I was going to get for now, so I used it. First up, I cut the outside...
Just got back from the big box store with some supplies, mostly some pine and MDF, in order to build a work bench. I’d love to start with a nicer design, however my lack of a thickness planer leads me to believe that I would not be able to execute it properly. So I’m setting my sights a little lower, with this nice and easy torsion box design by Tom Caspar, from an old issue of Woodwork Magazine. I like the simplicity of the design, and the fact that you can build it out of c...
I finally shimmed the brackets on the correct side and added matching shims on the opposite side of the front vice bearing and vola. turns smooth as butter. The front vice jaw is planed and sanded and has bench dog holes drilled in it. The TSV is Done. All it needs is a coat of oil, boiled linsead oil.and it is DONE> You can see the bench dog holes drilled in the apron, it is ready to be glued on to the bench. Then it is time to move the top off the legs, fix the wedged tenons, fli...
Didn’t have much shoptime lately, which made me try to squeeze every moment I got to try and make the most of it, which lead to rushing, which lead to screw up – but I’ll write more about that in a following installment and leave this one a bit more on the positive side. Last time I ran into the issue of having a not-square top part to work with. I fixed that by routing the edge at a 0.1 degree angle to straighten the front of the slab and make it parallel to the front 2 ...
The front face is mounted. I need to attach the chain cover, then disassemble everything, drill dog holes, finish plane the jaws then apply the oil finish. The tolerance on the holes was much larger than I thought. I put way to much effort into straightening the holes. There are 3/8ths pins that keep what ever you clamp from resting on the screws. The instructions indicate that you are to drill holes for these pins on the inside face of the rear jaw tangent to the screw hole. The sc...
I was working on fitting the skirt to the front of the bench, and it looks fantastic. in order to get to the final dimensions of 30” width of the top, I’m missing 1/8” extra material between the benchtop and the skirt to fill in the gap, while keeping the skirt flush with the legs fronts. so far so good. while fitting the skirt to the legs, I noticed that the gap on the left side of the bench is larger than the right side… a quick reach to the tape measure confirmed...
I had some good progress on the top today. it actually started a couple of days ago when I went ahead, cleaned up the buffer strip, and main top, and glued them up together, I also milled the end cap part (which is on top of the clamps in the photo): I also ground down one of the corner of the Lee-Valley Tailvise Nut so that I’ll be able to install the vise higher up and the nut will have less interference with the table top: I’m not a machinist, nor work with metal much (al...
finally getting to work on the actual bowling alley part of the “bowling alley workbench”, although I really found Damian’s comment on a previous installment entertaining, and might refer to it from now as the “Alley Workbench”...lol. The top as can be seen in the sketchup model is made of 6 different components: Main Slab (nails and all), Dog holes strip, buffer strip, 2 skirts (front and back) and a breadboard End Cap. In reality this will change slightly...
After last week’s ongoing progress, it felt a bit slow this week (which it is), but I did have some things I wanted to share, and also was able to finish the base with 3 coats of BLO which is what I’m going to keep on it for conditioning the wood, and protecting it from moisture. Mistake #1: Drawboring to the wrong side (cringe) 2 legs on each side of the base are connected together using 2 short rails. The top one is using a sliding dovetail, while the lower one uses M&T. ...
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