Mobile Workbench Project

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Project by BigBadBen posted 439 days ago 1478 views 7 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have finished my new mobile workbench. With many thanks to the members of this site for providing guidance and ideas.

I began by using scrap lumber from a neighbors house remodel and glued up and planed down the structural base and top framing to 16/4 in size. I used a torsion box design for the verticle sides.

Mass and mobility were key design parameters. I used the casters from a $12 dolly from a big box store because the weight capacity was 1,200 lbs (and it only cost $12). I mounted them on the inside of the base frame with 3/8” clearance from the floor. See the picture of the base on my set-up table showing the clearance. I then made four fancy “shoes” that are 3/4” high and slip over each corner of the base frame. I use a small pry bar to raise each side when the bench is in place. This is very effective and stable.

I contemplated making the maple to myself, but ended up purchasing a 36” by 72” by 2-1/4” top from Global. I made the edging from a 12’ by 11” piece of 8/4 mahogany. Georgeous piece of wood! I purchased one 9” vise from Rockler and the end vise from Lee Valley. I’m very happy with both. I have a picture of the top in place prior to making the base cabinet. The “fancy shoes” are resting on the inside of this view, not in place.

I used the bench for a month or so prior to making the drawers. I used 3/4” MDF for the drawer carcass and 100 lbs. full pull drawer slides. The drawers are made od 3/4” ply front and backs with 1/2” maple ply sides. I used 1/2” maple ply to skin the enitre base and used maple trim to outline. The false drawer fronts were made of stain grade 3/4” soft wood. I stained them to look like mahogany, but I’m not thrilled with the results of the false fronts. Oh well.

All in all, this was a fun project and will provide many years of functional use. As with any project, you learn from it. The best feature is that it rolls out of the way when not in use.

Thanks again fellow Lumber Jocks for you input.



7 comments so far

View stefang's profile


12953 posts in 1969 days

#1 posted 439 days ago

Great build Ben. It is sure to serve you well and I would be surprised if you ever wanted another. I like the size too.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View helluvawreck's profile


15627 posts in 1501 days

#2 posted 439 days ago

That a great bench. Congratulations and welcome to Lumberjocks.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View aussiedave's profile


3014 posts in 459 days

#3 posted 439 days ago

Great looking bench Ben and solid too…Great job.

-- Dave.......Keep calm and make more sawdust....

View Sanding2day's profile (online now)


964 posts in 481 days

#4 posted 439 days ago

Nice looking bench… Great design and love the use of mahogany. This has become one of my favorite woods due to its use in a current project. Thanks for sharing…

-- Dan

View nuzzo's profile


58 posts in 1751 days

#5 posted 439 days ago

Ben, nice looking bench. This is exactly what I need for my garage/shop. Could actually use a couple of these. The plastic folding saw horses and 5/8” sheet of particle board is getting old quick.

View BigBadBen's profile


7 posts in 711 days

#6 posted 439 days ago

Thanks for the comments. I appreciate the feedback.

View steliart's profile


1807 posts in 1323 days

#7 posted 438 days ago

very nice indeed !!!

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

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