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SYP Spilt-Top Roubo Workbench #1: 80% Complete

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Blog entry by grfrazee posted 566 days ago 3068 reads 4 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of SYP Spilt-Top Roubo Workbench series Part 2: Finished Leg Vise »

I was fortunate enough to be able to take off Christmas week and get a good start on my workbench. I’ve had the idea to build one in my head for a few months now, and have been slowly accumulating the parts and hardware necessary. My intention was to make it possible to take the bench apart and move it with relative ease since I will be moving it from my dad’s shop once I have a shop of my own (side note: apartments suck).

I used southern yellow pine, special ordered from Menards, to build most of the bench. It’s inexpensive, stiff, and I won’t care so much when it gets dinged and banged around during use. The hardware is the Lee Valley Tail Vise and just the plain Tail Vise Screw for the leg vise. The breadboards and leg vise chop are hickory. The parallel guide for the leg vise and the slide rail for the deadman are scrap oak from the shop.

I had originally intended to blog about the construction of my workbench, but considering the frenetic pace of building this thing, it would have gotten in my way. I did all that you see below in the space of a week, and total hours put in was between 40-60. There were some 12+ hour days, and some only 4 hours due to the holiday. I made four big black garbage bags worth of shavings and sawdust, and I’m pretty sure I’m still blowing the finer sawdust from my nose.

Below you can see the wedge ends for the long stretchers, which are dovetailed at the end. They’re nice and easy to whack in with a mallet when the wood inevitably shrinks and expands with the seasons. Also, the back guide wheel for the parallel guide. I’ll have to add one in the front.

The leg vise turned out nicely. Note to all – if you plan on removing the vise hardware from the chop at any point, don’t use the included screws that come with the Lee Valley kit. They stripped out on me pretty quick.

Back view. Easier to see the tool platform and the missing chunk where the tail vise will go.

It was very satisfying to be able to use the workbench even though it’s technically not finished. The thing is rock solid and weighs quite a bit. I’ll have to figure out an estimate once I put together the final SketchUp model.

Things left to do:

That last one I’m reeeeaaaaalllyyyy not looking forward to.

-- -=Pride is not a sin=-



10 comments so far

View Cory's profile

Cory

721 posts in 2016 days


#1 posted 566 days ago

Nice work. I wish I had the room for a big bench like that. I’m jealous!

Did you peg the breadboard ends or just glue them?

-- The secret to getting ahead is getting started.

View grfrazee's profile

grfrazee

322 posts in 736 days


#2 posted 566 days ago

I glued only about 1” in the middle of the breadboards to allow for expansion and contraction of the top.

-- -=Pride is not a sin=-

View DocSavage45's profile

DocSavage45

4736 posts in 1439 days


#3 posted 566 days ago

pretty piece, are you going to want to pound on it? LOL! Sounds like a pretty intense build? Not bad material from Menards.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View sb194's profile

sb194

175 posts in 1615 days


#4 posted 566 days ago

Looks great. Can’t wait to see it finished.

Sean

View lowellmk's profile

lowellmk

61 posts in 569 days


#5 posted 566 days ago

Bravo!

Great looking bench….I’m envious!

-- Wag more, bark less.

View jeffbranch's profile

jeffbranch

92 posts in 1249 days


#6 posted 564 days ago

I’m jealous. I want a roubo.

-- http://jeffbranch.wordpress.com

View eff's profile

eff

16 posts in 548 days


#7 posted 541 days ago

Nicely done!

View mileskimball's profile

mileskimball

77 posts in 611 days


#8 posted 540 days ago

What a great-looking bench!

-- Miles

View grfrazee's profile

grfrazee

322 posts in 736 days


#9 posted 514 days ago

Thanks everyone for the compliments!

-- -=Pride is not a sin=-

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6747 posts in 1748 days


#10 posted 132 days ago

Beautiful bench man! You did a great job on grain orientation. Straight grained SYP looks pretty sharp.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

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