My own Paulk Total Station

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Project by smozes posted 04-30-2017 05:20 AM 6002 views 3 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my second project, after my HF trailer build. It took months, on and off. I decided on this because everything in my one-1 car garage must be portable.

As a relative beginner this was a big undertaking. I made many mistakes but I learned a lot. I’ve used every single tool I have, in many different ways.

The Total Station is quite intricate, everything is at a specific place and measurement for a crucial but not immediately obvious reason. It’s like a machine, in a way.

I’m not sure what was the most difficult stage, every one of them was a challenge but I made it.

My build is faithful to the plan. My tools are different and naturally this presented challenges. I chose the Craftsman Compact 10” miter saw specifically for this project (my first miter saw), due to its side rail mount which makes it very compact. I don’t know of any other saw, excluding the Kapex, that would work well here. My table saw is the Dewalt DWE 7491rs, which is quite a bit larger than Paulk’s 7480, this gave me some grief because I missed on that subtle difference when starting out. I needed to move the mounts, and chose rigid conduits to support the weight.

For the table top holes, I had a template done by a CNC and expected it to be straightforward. It was still a bit tricky because the plan measurements and my router bits were imperial. Because I had MFT style bench dogs, the holes were too small by a hair, and required rework with a flush trim bit. Next time I’d do it in metric.

If there’s one thing I’m not sure about, it’s the saw horses. My garage floor is not completely level so the fit is not perfect.

I have big plans for this table and can’t wait to put it to work.

4 comments so far

View pottz's profile


3839 posts in 1224 days

#1 posted 04-30-2017 07:01 PM

wow very cool setup looks like you put a lot of time and thought into getting this where it is.should handle about anything youll need to do future projects.when you’ve got a small space like yours you always have to think multi function,and you did a great job on lets see what comes out of it.great job.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View LittleBlackDuck's profile


2120 posts in 1060 days

#2 posted 05-01-2017 08:56 AM

Great job on the Paulk, smozes. Being your 2nd. project makes it even more impressive. All that’s stopping me from giving you 100 out of 100 is that you didn’t mention you did it bare foot with ingrown toe nails.

I’ve always admired his designs and regret that I have my workshop decked out and cannot justify the build. One day I might just accidentally saw off my workbench’s legs to justify the build (for an assembly table without the saws).

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

View inexile's profile


1 post in 100 days

#3 posted 10-13-2018 06:59 PM

Nice job with this!! I’m working on the same bench (minus the saw horses) and also struggling with the dewalt 7491rs supports. Would love to see how you ended up designing these. Can you post a few more photos and any thoughts you have around the design? I’ve scoped my saw every which way and can’t find an effective way to build the mounts.


View smozes's profile


26 posts in 940 days

#4 posted 10-14-2018 12:26 AM

struggling with the dewalt 7491rs supports. Would love to see how you ended up designing these. Can you post a few more photos and any thoughts you have around the design?

I removed everything from the saw sides, now it’s just the cord and the bare frame. Otherwise, I followed the plan.

The only limitation is with the 7491 saw fence adjustment when you use the right side miter extension, as the rails are blocked by it. The 7480 is probably small enough to use its full range.

You can see that I had to drill new holes for the pipes once I realized my saw’s actual dimensions. It’s ugly but hasn’t been a problem.

(I can’t figure out how to post images in the right orientation)

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