Scandavian Style Workbench

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Project by RLindberry posted 09-02-2013 10:18 PM 6704 views 20 times favorited 25 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve finally finished the project I started two or three years ago…my Klausz style workbench. I built the base a while back, and then it got put on hold for other things, and I finally got back to it last year. This morning I put the BLO on it and pronounced it done.

Originally, I planned to make it out of maple, but soon realized that I couldn’t afford that. So I went down to Lowe’s and picked through their stacks of doug fir 4×4 and 4×6 to find the best wood I could. I wasn’t too worried about including tight knots, but I did try to minimize them as I prepared my stock. Basically, the entire bench is douglas fir, with a few pieces of hem-fir thrown in at non-essential areas. I also chose to accent it with the use of a little black walnut that I had on hand. I was hoping for form and function, but I ended up with a lot more function than form – the pictures don’t show the faults very well.

In case I ever have to move this thing very far, I built the base to be able to break it down. The top will lift off, and then the stretchers are joined to the leg assemblies via angled tenons with wedges on top which effectually turn them into very large dovetails. The vise hardware is from Lee Valley and works very well.

I learned on this project that I really don’t like working with DF, because it splinters off too easily. But for the money savings, I think it was worth it. I didn’t keep a really precise record, but I’m pretty sure that I’m under $500 for the whole thing. Also, I learned the value of a selection of saws. A lot of the joinery is pretty crude because the doves on this thing were too big for my dovetail saw. Since I don’t have a tenon saw or anything else really, I ended up cutting most of the joinery with a Bishop 6 TPI rip. The results were far from impressive, and yet, I am extremely happy with what I ended up with and look forward to using this to maximize my hand tool capabilities.

25 comments so far

View RGtools's profile


3372 posts in 2851 days

#1 posted 09-02-2013 10:24 PM

You should be very proud of this bench. It’s very well executed with a materials that are readily available around you. That is one measure of a craftsman that gets missed all to often…adapting to one’s surroundings.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View AnthonyNOLA's profile


8 posts in 2018 days

#2 posted 09-02-2013 10:29 PM

Great Job! I was going to do the same slope design for shavings in my tool tray, but decided to scratch the tray completely. Lord knows, I don’t need another reason to not put tools back in their place!

-- "I do not want the government to take away my human dignity and insure me anything more than a normal security. I don't want handouts." John Wayne

View Airframer's profile


3043 posts in 2150 days

#3 posted 09-02-2013 10:38 PM

Very Nice! That bench should serve you well into the future!

-- Eric - "I'm getting proficient with these hand jobbers. - BigRedKnothead"

View theoldfart's profile


10161 posts in 2648 days

#4 posted 09-02-2013 10:43 PM

Outstanding bench. I have DF for my legs and I can relate to your frustration. My top will red oak with a little cherry for eye candy. Hopefully mine will look as good as yours. Nicely done.

-- "With every tool obtained, there is another that is needed" DonW ( Kevin )

View RLindberry's profile


54 posts in 2863 days

#5 posted 09-02-2013 11:00 PM

Thank you all!. Anthony: I know what you mean about not putting tools away. However, I don’t have any tool storage at present. A wall hung tool cabinet and saw till are both on my short list for projects, now that this is done.

OldFart: I hope yours goes well. Honestly, the pictures look a lot better than the actual bench. A close examination reveals a lot of flaws. I’ll be interested to see pictures when you get done.

View CL810's profile


3868 posts in 3185 days

#6 posted 09-02-2013 11:09 PM

Congrats RL! That’s a great bench that will serve you well for a long time.

-- "The only limits to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today." - FDR

View theoldfart's profile


10161 posts in 2648 days

#7 posted 09-02-2013 11:14 PM

RL, also you might post this to the worbench smackdown thread, as well as a add the tag “smack down”

-- "With every tool obtained, there is another that is needed" DonW ( Kevin )

View RLindberry's profile


54 posts in 2863 days

#8 posted 09-02-2013 11:42 PM

Great idea. I went ahead and posted to the smackdown thread. This was the first I’d heard of that. There are some great benches there!

View terryR's profile


7428 posts in 2505 days

#9 posted 09-03-2013 12:28 AM

Very nice, Roy. Your two vise design is unique and cool. I could stare at that bench all day! Great proportions, nice use of contrasting woods, excellent condor tails. A tool to be proud of!

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View scarpenter002's profile


606 posts in 4102 days

#10 posted 09-03-2013 01:40 AM

Very nice job. That bench looks both beautiful and functional.
Thanks for sharing.

-- Scott in Texas

View Manitario's profile


2679 posts in 3080 days

#11 posted 09-03-2013 01:49 AM

Great looking bench! The Scandinavian style benches seem to be in the minority on LJ’s.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Jorge G.'s profile

Jorge G.

1537 posts in 2672 days

#12 posted 09-03-2013 01:52 AM

Glad to see this one, it is next on my projects list.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

View kdc68's profile


2691 posts in 2473 days

#13 posted 09-03-2013 10:38 AM

Beautiful Bench at a great price point !

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

View aussiedave's profile


3114 posts in 2021 days

#14 posted 09-03-2013 10:57 AM

That is an awesome workbench, you should get a lifetime of enjoyment out of it…great job.

-- Dave.......If at first you don’t succeed redefine success....

View paratrooper34's profile


915 posts in 3149 days

#15 posted 09-03-2013 01:02 PM

Very nice!!! You can definitely be proud of your work here. Kudos!

-- Mike

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