Workbench #5: So many tenons!

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Blog entry by Philip posted 11-21-2013 03:29 AM 1819 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: This might just happen... Part 5 of Workbench series Part 6: andyboy's favorite...the finish »

Continuing our workbench journey, we have the base to construct. I wanted the base to be as large as possible to allow for plenty of storage space down the line…

So now we start with the layout, and shown previously…we cut the tenon shoulders on the make-shift table saw.

There are 20 TENONS AND MORTISES TO CUT! Whew, just had to get that out there…

Here is a picture that shows the difference between pieces that have been planed with the smoother (vertical) and the 50 year old finish that still has to be removed (horizontal pieces)

Dry fitting…made possible thanks to the clamps my in-laws got me- thanks!

The original plan was to draw-bore all mortise and tenon joints since I didn’t have clamps. Once I got the clamps and started thinking about things I came to the conclusion that I needed to make the bench knock-down for the next time we move (because we will move in the future). If the difference between keeping the bench and having to sell it is my ability to collapse it- so be it! I’ve already broken all the rules building this as it is…

The base pieces are huge, so the tenons and mortises are also huge. I broke the rules again by not offsetting the stretchers to make space for the bed bolts. I wanted the pieces to be the same on the bottom and top section so I just offset the bed bolts and did some creative drilling…

Where the front right leg attaches to the bench top we had to so some creative cutting to not interfere with the wedge shaped wooden nut for the vise…this is the result.

Here is a photo that shows the bed bolt connector going in. If you look close you can see the hole for the other bed bolt that comes just above it(look inside the mortise). The “V” you see is woodburned into the leg and a matching one on the stretcher so I know how to take it apart and re-assemble it as needed.

Here it is, and what a great feeling to see it come together ready for finish!

-- I never finish anyth

4 comments so far

View stefang's profile


15953 posts in 3483 days

#1 posted 11-21-2013 09:48 AM

Looks really solid and well built Phillip. I’m sure you will get a lifetime of use from it. I think you were smart to make it knock down.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View justoneofme's profile


652 posts in 2629 days

#2 posted 11-21-2013 03:21 PM

Sometimes rules are meant to be broken Philip … especially when you end up all the better for breaking them! Fantastic looking workbench!! I enjoyed the photo tutorial too :)

-- Elaine in Duncan

View mafe's profile


11741 posts in 3238 days

#3 posted 11-21-2013 05:16 PM

Looks really good.
Elegant and like it can take some use.
Look forward to see it all together.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View KOVA's profile


1363 posts in 2527 days

#4 posted 11-29-2013 03:43 AM



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