Benchcrafted Shaker Workbench

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Project by lj61673 posted 11-26-2011 05:59 PM 10552 views 39 times favorited 34 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I thought I would post some pictures of my almost completed Benchcrafted Shaker workbench. The only item left is the tail vise which I will be ordering shortly.
My version is scaled down a bit from the plans which call for an overall length of approx 85”. My bench is approx 74” due to some space restrictions. I also scaled down some of the other pieces respectively to keep all of the origional proportions correct. The apron and end cap are a full 4” thick. The main section of the top is 2-1/4” thick. The workbench is 35” tall, and measures 23-1/2” from front to back. The carcass is made from 3/4” BB ply, the face frame, drawer fronts, doors, side panels and moldings are all made from full 1” Poplar. The carcass is very rigid and very heavy. The bench as it sits now, without tail vise assembly weighs over 300lbs.
There are also a few other cosmetic changes I made because, well, they appealed to me. I used Walnut for the dog hole backing strip, I think it makes a nice contrast with the Maple. I also chamfered the 4 edges of the carcass so that they matched the beveled edges of the doors and side boards. I also added an additional 1” molded base assembly to widen the footprint a little for some additional stability.
A tip of the cap to Jameel and the folks at Benchcrafted, their plans and vise hardware were first class (they even supplied the suede leather with enough to face the leg vise and all of the bench dogs), and Jameel took the time personally to answer any of my questions and concerns. I highly recommend their products to anyone looking to build a workbench….

34 comments so far

View Robsshop's profile


907 posts in 2971 days

#1 posted 11-26-2011 06:35 PM

Very sharp looking bench,and all of the construction details look top notch. That has to be a pleasure to work on and I bet it is the first thing Your eye is drawn to when You walk in to the shop !! Really nice job on a workshop workhorse !

-- Rob,Gaithersburg,MD,One mans trash is another mans wood shop treasure ! ;-)

View a1Jim's profile


117090 posts in 3573 days

#2 posted 11-26-2011 06:54 PM

That’s one of the most outstanding benches I’ve ever seen, superb workmanship, beautiful. This bench will last for generations to come.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3305 days

#3 posted 11-26-2011 08:34 PM

Definitely a 1st. class workbench. Looks too nice to use in the shop. Those first few stanis and gouges will be devistating. Maybe you shoud just use it in your house as a piece of furniture.
I really like that big wheel handle on your vice also.

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 3552 days

#4 posted 11-26-2011 11:21 PM

Really cool how you show off the dovetails with the wood/paint contrast.

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3111 days

#5 posted 11-27-2011 01:21 AM

looking good :-)
may it serve you well and the next many generations
like the sliding deadman solution :-)


View blackcherry's profile


3338 posts in 3819 days

#6 posted 11-27-2011 01:32 AM

It a beautiful looking bench should produce plenty of wonderful project here in the near future. Great work and thanks for sharing…BC

View MrMeasureTwice's profile


123 posts in 2417 days

#7 posted 11-27-2011 03:01 AM

LJ – great design and nice build.

Question: The vertical board with the holes looks like it is movable – is it just a ‘dog’ holder, or does it serve another purpose as well?

Thanks for sharing your creation – WELL DONE!!


-- -- Jim “Mr. Measure Twice” Marchetti --

View lj61673's profile


261 posts in 2395 days

#8 posted 11-27-2011 03:35 AM

Thanks for all the nice comments guys! I appreciate you taking the time to comment.
The shooter: The vertical board is called a deadman, and it’s used as a support for long pieces. That board slides along the bottom rail. Here is a pic of how it’s used…

View Bryan Herde's profile

Bryan Herde

18 posts in 2686 days

#9 posted 11-27-2011 05:51 AM

i’m speechless

-- Bryan H

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 2610 days

#10 posted 11-27-2011 06:43 AM

very nice .i want one one day

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View doordude's profile


1085 posts in 2979 days

#11 posted 11-27-2011 06:45 AM

a first class bench.what color and type of paint did you use? looks nice with the wood

View MrMeasureTwice's profile


123 posts in 2417 days

#12 posted 11-27-2011 06:46 AM

LJ – thanks for the picture – makes perfect sense to me now!! Just bought the plans from them as well. Gonna have to wait on the vises though – a bit pricey, but they look incredibly well built.


-- -- Jim “Mr. Measure Twice” Marchetti --

View papasteve's profile


30 posts in 2684 days

#13 posted 11-27-2011 07:01 AM

Excellent build on your bench! I really like the sliding deadman.

I am curious about how the dogs work. Do they push up from underneath? What keeps them in place?

-- Even if we don't know how, we can still try.

View michelletwo's profile


2735 posts in 3012 days

#14 posted 11-27-2011 02:07 PM

WOW what a bench. The Shakers left us with so many good things from their short “life” here, in US. I hope you enjoy every minute you work with this & that you have a daughter or son you can pass it to.

View lj61673's profile


261 posts in 2395 days

#15 posted 11-27-2011 02:24 PM

Thanks Doordude, the paint is just a waterbased semigloss latex. I think it’s made by Glidden. The color is called Barn Red. I was also considering a navy blue but couldn’t find one that I liked. Either one works great with the natural Maple.

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