|Project by David Bareford||posted 05-18-2015 02:03 PM||4060 views||12 times favorited||11 comments|
I got into wookdworking about three years ago, and for the last two or so have become a dedicated hand tool user. I’ve been “making do” with a too-high garage counter and a Black and Decker Workmate for about two years now, and I’ve dreamed of a “real” bench but figured the materials alone were out of my budget (read: Craigslist free ads), to say nothing of the vise hardware I would need.
Then I ran across Mike Siemsen’s DVD on the Nicholson workbench build (available from Lost Art Press). Mike takes a 5-gallon bucket of old hand tools, shows how to tune them up, and then proceeds to build a great bench using only those tools. I took the plunge and ordered the digital download (which came with a Sketchup file, pdfs of different views, and even transcripts of the videos.
What a great video! Mike not only makes it look easy, he makes it easy. I built the bench in a weekend, spending less than $100 on materials, and his bench has enough ingenious features that I can do all my workholding without the need for a vise! How’s that for a deal?
Here are some photos of the process, starting from the lumber (mostly 4 2×12x10s) through the finished bench. With the addition of a pair of Gramercy holdfasts, this bench does everything I need it to and it is a joy to work on! Already started the first project on it…