|Project by David Taylor||posted 11-17-2015 04:35 AM||1411 views||0 times favorited||12 comments|
I am in the process of finishing up my shop build. I now have all four interior plywood walls installed and painted white for good light reflection, and now it’s time to start thinking about making the shop something I can work in, not just a big box with tools in it and a bunch of potential workshop detritus (junk) on the floor :)
To that end, I need to turn my slab (21×70 x 2 inches thick [53×178 x 5 cm], weighs about 80 pounds [36.28 kg]) of Kentucky Coffee into a workbench top. I started to do so, and found to my dismay that it is twisted. Like a half an inch twisted, which means if I flatten it as-is, I will have an inch thick slab, which will no longer be a slab, but just a wide board. So I says to myself, “Self,” I says, “if I cut that slab in half length-wise, I will have less to remove to make it flat.” Then I thought about pushing an 80 pound slab over my new table saw (Delta 36-725) which has some 6-8” after the blade. The slab will tend to want to fall off before it is cut. I’m a big guy, but not big enough to hold an 80 pound slab level while only holding the last six inches of it.
So, like so many things, one thing has to be built before another can be worked on. In this case, i need an out-feed table to catch my slab after cutting it. This can and will be useful for many things. I can use it as an assembly table, it’s another horizontal surface for holding stuff I don’t want on the floor while I make the myriad shop things I need to make over the coming months, etc. Very useful project.
I went down to the local Home Depot (after spending the last year or so building my shop I am on a first name basis with most of the people there!) and found a couple of 2’ x 4’ [61×122 cm] pieces of melamine (I don’t have a truck, and the pieces needed to fit in my Outback) and I found 8 actually straight 2×4 [5×10 cm] studs! Brought them into the shop, glued the melamine pieces together, cut and mortised and glued up some double thick legs, made stretchers and rails, and in a few hours had me an out-feed table.
I had just seen Frank Howarth’s giant CNC frame build video in which he uses hockey pucks and bolts for adjustable feet. I didn’t use hockey pucks, but instead turned some feet on the lathe from 2×4 off-cuts, and ran a 3” carriage bolt through them. T-nuts centered in the leg bottoms gave them a place to go, and now I could adjust the height of the table to match the table saw (or rather, just a smidgen lower than, so as to not have trouble with things catching on the edge.)
Route a couple of grooves in line with the table saw miter slots, and we are good to go!
Overall 4’ x 4’ top [122×122 cm], 36” [91.4 cm] tall at lowest, adjustable to about 38” [96.5 cm] tall (table saw is 37” tall) base is 40” by 40” , so there is a 4” overhang on the table top all the way around. I am thinking of putting a vise on it, so it can be a temporary workbench while I build the real one. The workbench I have been using, Wood magazine’s One Weekend Workbench that I built some ten years ago is in the basement, and it nearly killed me and my son getting it down there – it’s staying there!
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