LumberJocks

Stowaway Bench

  • Advertise with us
Project by Elizabeth posted 1246 days ago 2953 views 14 times favorited 23 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Over the past seven weeks I have been taking an evening woodworking class at the University of Oregon’s Craft Center. The class is an introduction to woodworking class focusing on making a bench or small table. I chose a Stowaway Bench plan which I found in a copy of American Woodworker – a link to the online version of the article is at the end of this post.

The original plan called for a 44” wide finshed bench but I chose to make it 40” instead to better fit in a recess in our front hallway. It’s mostly made of Eastern Hard Maple with a hinged lid of spalted maple. This is the first piece of furniture that I’ve ever made.

This bench is technically – and literally – not yet finished because I haven’t put a finish on it. I’m planning on using Danish oil but the class ended before I got that far, so I’ll do that at home at some point. I also omitted the dowel plugs step which is second to last for the same reason, but there are so many glue joints that it’s pretty sturdy without them, and the rails sit directly on notches in the legs.

I also made a couple of modifications to the plan (much to the dismay of my teacher) – the plan calls for 5 degree angles at some spots but not others, so I added some more 5 degree angles to help things fit together better, and I hand chiseled the recesses for the hinges instead of making a dado completely across the board. I think both of these original instructions in the plan were to make it simpler for the beginner, but I felt it was too much of a sacrifice in looks to leave that way.

Plans for the Stowaway Bench can be found here:

http://americanwoodworker.com/blogs/projects/archive/2010/01/13/stowaway-bench.aspx





23 comments so far

View HalDougherty's profile

HalDougherty

1820 posts in 1738 days


#1 posted 1246 days ago

Nice looking bench. Now you need a shoe rack and a coat rack to go with your entry bench. Thanks for the link to the plans. I subscribe to American Woodworker, but who knows where the issue is with the bench in it. LOL

-- Hal, Tennessee http://www.first285.com

View Chris Pond's profile

Chris Pond

63 posts in 1548 days


#2 posted 1246 days ago

I to did a bench too but not as a Stowaway type. I personally like a bench as a starter project as the “lay out” is easy. A top with a pair of leg :) I like what you did with your bench, & yes a little hinge hand work a gives a better look.

-- Chris, Summerland BC

View SignWave's profile

SignWave

133 posts in 1536 days


#3 posted 1246 days ago

Good work on that, it looks great. The top piece appears to have a lot of character.

View DragonLady's profile

DragonLady

298 posts in 1508 days


#4 posted 1246 days ago

oh, that’s very nice!

-- A woman's work is never done-but power tools help!

View BarbS's profile

BarbS

2424 posts in 2586 days


#5 posted 1246 days ago

Sweet! and I love your adventurous spirit in adapting a plan to your own desired spec’s. Good job! I expect great things from you now, in ‘fudging’ on plans and making something your own. Very nice bench.

-- http://barbsid.blogspot.com/

View Dave D's profile

Dave D

2 posts in 1265 days


#6 posted 1246 days ago

Really digging the figure on that top piece!

View Rick's profile

Rick

143 posts in 2010 days


#7 posted 1245 days ago

Great job – Spalted maple might must be my favorite wood for anything. I use it on pens, too. Please update us when the finish goes on!!

-- There are many tempting parking places on the road to success

View BritBoxmaker's profile

BritBoxmaker

4280 posts in 1537 days


#8 posted 1245 days ago

The bench and the spalting looks very nice. As for the modifications, if it works for you then thats the way to do it.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging. http://www.theartofboxes.com

View SPHinTampa's profile

SPHinTampa

548 posts in 2186 days


#9 posted 1245 days ago

Nice work

-- Shawn, I ask in order to learn

View NormG's profile

NormG

3611 posts in 1504 days


#10 posted 1244 days ago

Nice looking bench, just because something is easier does not mean there is not a better and simpler way to do that something. I am sure your instructor was just being an instructor, seeking to save you time. You made a modification that worked for you and you learned an additional skill. That bench is going to be around for a long time.

-- Norman

View Mary Anne's profile

Mary Anne

1057 posts in 1709 days


#11 posted 1244 days ago

Terrific job on the bench! That spalted top looks great. I like the modifications that make it yours. Bummer that your teacher did not encourage your creativity!

View steliart's profile

steliart

1807 posts in 1189 days


#12 posted 1158 days ago

Also a very cool idea and construction

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions - http://www.steliart.com --

View Bricofleur's profile

Bricofleur

1094 posts in 1694 days


#13 posted 1134 days ago

Another great inspiration since I have to build two for my kitchen. Thanks for sharing.

Best,

Serge

http://atelierdubricoleur.wordpress.com

-- Learn from yesterday, work today and enjoy success tomorrow. -- http://atelierdubricoleur.wordpress.com

View moondog69's profile

moondog69

95 posts in 1441 days


#14 posted 1103 days ago

nice

-- al.chazy ny

View SuburbanDon's profile

SuburbanDon

475 posts in 1495 days


#15 posted 802 days ago

Interesting design. I like those long “arches” at each end. I would never have though to hinge the lid.

-- --- Measure twice, mis-cut, start over, repeat ---

showing 1 through 15 of 23 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

GardenTenders.com :: gardening showcase