Ash & Purpleheart Workbench

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Project by GlennsGrandson posted 464 days ago 5014 views 33 times favorited 40 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Well I never thought that I would accomplish this feat this early in my woodworking career. I just started doing it and before I knew it I had rough sawn ash stacked in my garage and vises in the mail. It really came to this because I needed better clamping options and I was tired of pushing my bench across the garage.

I have been working on this since October. The purpleheart was given to me as “scraps” from my uncle and I bought the ash directly from the sawmill. The vise on the end is a Grizzly Cabinet makers vise ($50) and the two screws in the “twin screw” vise are Tail-Vise screws ($37.50 each) from Lee Valley. The vises work very well. The twin screw vise does not tolerate being unequal on screw turns more than one revolution but it works fine, I’m still happy with the extra $200 in my pocket that I saved not buying the actual twin screw vise. I figure maybe someday I can put sprockets on the end and add a chain.

Basically all M&T joints with bolts through the joints on the crossbeams. I pegged the tenons with 1/2” purpleheart dowels made on the router with a 1/4” roundover bit. Good practice. Everything is real tight and this bench is very solid/sturdy.

It weighs in around 250 lbs, I think a bit more probably. I would have liked to taken pictures in the sun but no one has been around to help me carry it outside so that’s fine.

I finished it with a recipe I found in a couple of different places online, it is 2oz of beeswax shaved into 16oz of turpentine until it dissolved into a nice slurry and then I added 16oz BLO. It turned out really nice and the smell during application wasn’t bad at all. And when it did dry the bench mostly smells like beeswax. Once it dried I needed to buff it which really makes it look nice. It feels a bit tacky yet but I’m sure a few more days and some sawdust will take care of that.

I uploaded a few videos also. The first one being a general tour of the unfinished bench, the seconds being a timelapse of me applying finish which is pretty fun to watch, and then the final video is a couple things that I forgot to point out and it was taken after the finish was applied (but not buffed).

Big thanks to all of the help that I got from all of the LJ’s on here, especially on the Workbench Smack Down Forum.

Any comments are welcome, thanks for looking everyone!

-- Grant - S/N Dakota

40 comments so far

View DaddyZ's profile


2332 posts in 1541 days

#1 posted 464 days ago

Very Cool Looking Bench !!! Love the graining of the wood….

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

View Sergio's profile


392 posts in 1192 days

#2 posted 464 days ago

Congrats! really nice workbench. I wish you have a lot of fun using it.

-- - Greetings from Brazil - --

View Jerry Spencer's profile

Jerry Spencer

49 posts in 1314 days

#3 posted 464 days ago

That is one great looking work bench. Very nicely done.

-- Jerry - Ohio

View exelectrician's profile


1355 posts in 927 days

#4 posted 464 days ago

Nice – Very nice. Good thinking on the $$ saved

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

View Straightbowed's profile


717 posts in 798 days

#5 posted 464 days ago

super super super

-- Stevo, work in tha city woodshop in the country

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

10794 posts in 838 days

#6 posted 464 days ago

Great job. Too nice looking for a workbench.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

View hammergeek's profile


7 posts in 465 days

#7 posted 464 days ago

That isn’t a workbench it a practically art!!

-- Sorry Folks, Jesus is still the #1 Carpenter!

View a1Jim's profile (online now)


109272 posts in 2077 days

#8 posted 464 days ago

Fantastic bench, Grant

-- Custom furniture

View Mauricio's profile


6693 posts in 1652 days

#9 posted 464 days ago

Great job Grant! That bench is sweet!

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Mosquito's profile


4094 posts in 792 days

#10 posted 464 days ago

Excellent work Grant. I’m sure that bench will serve you well :-)

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist -

View Tag84's profile


568 posts in 1157 days

#11 posted 464 days ago

what a great bench! beautiful combinations!

-- -Thomas -

View BusterB's profile


1306 posts in 508 days

#12 posted 464 days ago

That may be too pretty to actually work on…lol Fine build sir

-- Buster, Ocoee TN (Critics are men who watch a battle from a high place then come down and shoot the survivors - Hemingway)

View Brit's profile


4915 posts in 1343 days

#13 posted 464 days ago

What a great blog Grant and what a fantastic bench. Thanks for sharing the finishing recipe with us also. That really brought out the grain nicely. Enjoy it!

-- Andy -- Old Chinese proverb say: If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it.

View slotman's profile


100 posts in 957 days

#14 posted 464 days ago

Beatiful bench, I’d be afraid to use it though. Plus great music, I love Foggy Mountain Breakdown! Great job!

-- Roger

View jap's profile


1218 posts in 554 days

#15 posted 464 days ago


-- Joel

showing 1 through 15 of 40 comments

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