Bowling Lane Workbench

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Project by joeysjunk posted 12-09-2010 07:31 PM 9772 views 7 times favorited 26 comments Add to Favorites Watch

So I was in need of a work surface for my garage workshop…and this is the result. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to salvage some bowling alley lanes from a local establishment and figured they would do the job. These lanes were pine, not the typical hard maple, and I backed them with 3/4 inch plywood for stability and wrapped them in pine trim boards. I built the stand from 6×6 glue laminated yellow pine beams and douglas fir for the stretchers. I wanted to make sure the bowling lanes was the focal point so I painted the stand satin black and added a cheap-o vise. This was my first attempt at mortise and tenon joinery, and overall I’m pretty happy with it. Now on to using it to build other projects…

-- Joey

26 comments so far

View canadianchips's profile


2600 posts in 2997 days

#1 posted 12-09-2010 07:51 PM

Where are the 5 dots. ? I used to SET pins when I was kid. We jumped over the side and set the pins up for bowlers. Single lane alley that was still operating without auto pin setter til 1998. lol
That will be a very solid work area. I would be afraid to use it, you have a very nice glossy finish on it.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View DaddyZ's profile


2475 posts in 3040 days

#2 posted 12-09-2010 08:02 PM

Strike !!!

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View ClayandNancy's profile


519 posts in 3015 days

#3 posted 12-09-2010 08:08 PM

Great looking bench. I’m looking for some wood from a bowling alley,I’ve got the base made from LVLs. Having trouble finding a bowling alley, any suggestions?

View joeysjunk's profile


26 posts in 2816 days

#4 posted 12-09-2010 08:13 PM

I just got lucky…a buddy of mine bought some stuff at the closing auction. He found out they were just going to demo the lanes, so he called me and a couple of other guys to come get what we wanted. Sorry I don’t have any big secret, just keep your ear to the ground!

-- Joey

View Sodabowski's profile


2374 posts in 2832 days

#5 posted 12-09-2010 08:40 PM

There would be no way for me to build anything on this beautifully topped workbench… I’d turn it into a display table rather :p Nice score on the wood, mate!

-- Thomas - Pondering the inclusion of woodworking into physics and chemistry classes...

View tnrick's profile


9 posts in 2794 days

#6 posted 12-09-2010 09:36 PM

Like Sodabowski, I’d be afraid to use it! Very nice bench!

View Dominic Vanacora's profile

Dominic Vanacora

508 posts in 3869 days

#7 posted 12-09-2010 09:38 PM

I recall when I purchased my top the first mark I put in it took me about an hour to fix. Well as we all know we get over it after the 30th mark. However when you have a surface like this you could just call in a refinisher and have it looking like new in no time. Great Job Great Idea. At least you have an entire lane to use.
I agree with Sodabowski this is a great conversaton piece. It would make a great table. You’ll never want to sand wood on it or even worst stop your sander on it.

-- Dominic, Trinity, Florida...Lets be safe out there.

View ChuckC's profile


828 posts in 2935 days

#8 posted 12-09-2010 09:51 PM

That looks great!

View Scott R. Turner's profile

Scott R. Turner

267 posts in 3188 days

#9 posted 12-09-2010 11:02 PM

The black legs are quite striking (no pun intended). But I agree with the other posters that it’s almost counter-productive to have such a gorgeous workbench top!

View Splinterman's profile


23074 posts in 3361 days

#10 posted 12-10-2010 12:15 AM

Hey Joey,
Now that is one cool looking bench….real nice job.

View ncdon's profile


220 posts in 2876 days

#11 posted 12-10-2010 12:36 AM

Simple, effective, beautiful, really well done.

-- Don, North Carolina, Working full time at retired.

View NormG's profile


6112 posts in 3003 days

#12 posted 12-10-2010 02:54 AM

Looks pretty sturdy to me. Great find

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View dakremer's profile


2672 posts in 3091 days

#13 posted 12-10-2010 03:21 AM

that is one bad A$$ table!! I love the “bowling lane” on top of the black frame – looks really cool!

-- Hey you dang woodchucks, quit chucking my wood!!!!

View Maveric777's profile


2693 posts in 3076 days

#14 posted 12-10-2010 03:40 AM

OK… Rule number one. If you make a sweet looking work bench like that you officially dont call the garage a “Garage” any more. It officially becomes “The Shop” and you officially remove it from the family’s vocabulary…… That’s just my official suggestion…

All kidding aside that thing is almost to pretty to work on. You done good Joey….

-- Dan ~ Texarkana, Tx.

View Chip's profile


1904 posts in 4092 days

#15 posted 12-10-2010 04:47 AM

This is way too nice to be a workbench. Wow.

-- Better to say nothing and be thought the fool... then to speak and erase all doubt!

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