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New Workbench

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Project by BillG posted 1909 days ago 3597 views 30 times favorited 24 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I completed this bench last week (5/1/09). I have been using a very old and rather shakey workbench for the last 30 years. I finally managed to build myself a new and totally solid bench. The top measures 28” X 68” and is 35” high. I am over 6’ tall so I made it a bit taller that normal (34”).

The support end frame is 3 1/2” square maple, the stretchers are 1 3/4” X 7” maple. The leg sections have large, glued mortise and tenons (2” sq. X 1 3/4” long) with a 1/2” maple dowel drawbored into the mortise and tennon to keep them tight. The stretchers have tenons that are 3/4 wide X 5 1/2” high X 3/4” long that fit snugly into their mortise and use 1/2” X 6” long bench bolts to secure them to the end frames. They were not glued so that the bench could be tightened over time as needed. The top was manufactured from maple and is quarter sawn maple glued up to a 2 1/4” thickness. I got such a good deal on the top that I couldn’t make it for twice the price, so I used it. It is wrapped on three sides with 2” X 7” Sapele. The front vise jaw is 2” X 8” X 32”.

The twin screw vise is 24” on center. The tail vise is over 100 years old, is quite heavy and is a quick release. I tightens in one half turn. I have not added the wooden insert jaws to that vise as yet.

I cut a 3/4” X 3/4” rabbet on the inside of the lower stretchers to add a shelf. I used 3/4” X 7 1/4” poplar and rabbeted a 3/8” shiplap edge on the boards to create a good fit. The Gramercy Tools Inc. hold fasts work very well and the Veritas bench dogs are well made and fit nicely in the 3/4” holes.

I put a lot of holes in the top of the table (maybe too many), but figured they would add versatility to the bench. The front jaw also has four holes in it. I am really looking forward to working on this bench. Right now it looks too nice to use, but I will use it. There are two coats of oil based polyeurethane on it for protection.

Follow up: A friend of mine picked up a commercial bench top that was 65” square and 2 1/4” thick. It came in two halves with three long rods that went through pre-drilled holes in the top to hold it together. He only wanted one half, so I was able to buy the other half from him.

-- Bill G - West Springfield, MA





24 comments so far

View colbynorwood's profile

colbynorwood

45 posts in 1967 days


#1 posted 1909 days ago

that looks really nice, now do me a favor and dont use it so it stays that way lol

hey your from springfield ma, i only 45 minutes away, im in montague, near turners falls and greenfield

-- Colby Norwood- learn how to measure, measure once, cut once

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 2421 days


#2 posted 1909 days ago

Bill, this is a gorgeous bench. It looks like it weighs a ton so it be able to take all the pounding you can give it. This should last you for years.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112000 posts in 2176 days


#3 posted 1909 days ago

This is a killer bench beautiful well done.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View woodworm's profile

woodworm

14124 posts in 2190 days


#4 posted 1909 days ago

Very nicely built workbench.
Sincerely, it would look very much nicer if you put same colour and finish on the foot and the base as you did to the apron. What do you think?

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View Les Hastings's profile

Les Hastings

1274 posts in 2372 days


#5 posted 1909 days ago

Great bench Bill, very nice work.

-- Les, Wichita, Ks. (I'd rather be covered in saw dust!)

View Don K.'s profile

Don K.

1075 posts in 1925 days


#6 posted 1909 days ago

Beautiful….did you buy the top from a individual or from a manufacturer to get such a great deal ??

-- Don S.E. OK

View Todd Thomas 's profile

Todd Thomas

4969 posts in 2048 days


#7 posted 1909 days ago

great looking becnhch…very well done

-- Todd, Oak Ridge, TN, Hello my name is Todd and I'm a Toolholic, I bought my last tool 10 days, no 4 days, oh heck I bought a tool on the way here! †

View cabinetmaster's profile

cabinetmaster

10874 posts in 2157 days


#8 posted 1909 days ago

Great looking bench. Now you want to build me one?...............................LOL

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View Tim Dorcas's profile

Tim Dorcas

188 posts in 2457 days


#9 posted 1909 days ago

Absolutely gorgeous!

-- www.craftedbytim.com - A Woodworking & Renovation Blog & www.craftedbytim.com - I make. You buy.

View Rj's profile

Rj

1047 posts in 2230 days


#10 posted 1909 days ago

Great work bench BILL ! You did an excellent job .
Job Well Done!

-- Rj's Woodworks,San Jose & Weed Ca,

View Brad_Nailor's profile

Brad_Nailor

2531 posts in 2556 days


#11 posted 1909 days ago

View newplane's profile

newplane

159 posts in 2677 days


#12 posted 1909 days ago

Dont worry about using it friend. Make some bench hooks for it, you can mess those up and not worry about your bench top.

-- Dont just dream it, get up and live it!

View snowdog's profile

snowdog

1132 posts in 2582 days


#13 posted 1909 days ago

That sure is a pretty bench you got there

-- "so much to learn and so little time"..

View lighthearted's profile

lighthearted

142 posts in 1913 days


#14 posted 1908 days ago

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11638 posts in 2287 days


#15 posted 1908 days ago

Absolutely too nice to get a scratch in just yet : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

showing 1 through 15 of 24 comments

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