Andre Roubo Workbench

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Project by mjdinsmore posted 09-16-2013 01:04 AM 2888 views 7 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Yes, yet another Roubo workbench! Nonetheless, they are handy benches to have because of their massive size and stability. It was kind of fun shopping huge mortises as well—I’ve never made any quite so big before! Living in the northeast (Boston), I didn’t have a handy source of great, cheap wood to make this beast. So I improvised and used fir for the top but used maple for the edges since fir has a tendency to want to split on sharp corners and it’s quite so strong edge-wise.

I’m currently adding a tail vice but that won’t really add much to the picture of my finished bench. I’ll add the dog-holes in the top after I have the tail vise in place so I can ensure it’s all aligned perfectly. I’m using a couple of vises from Lee Valley for the leg and tail vise.

The photos show it’s progress as I was making it. I improvised a little on the plan and made things a little beefier, but it’s generally true to form.

15 comments so far

View CL810's profile


2006 posts in 1639 days

#1 posted 09-16-2013 01:24 AM

Nice bench MJ! Your wood choices not only make sense but they look good as well. Nicely done! Come join the fun at the smackdown thread. I’m looking forward to pics of your tail vise build.

-- "It's amazing how much can go wrong when you think you know what you're doing."

View mjdinsmore's profile


57 posts in 2204 days

#2 posted 09-16-2013 01:29 AM

Thanks. I’m a frugal Yankee having grown up in the Northeast Kingdom in Vermont. I didn’t think it’d be appropriate to lay down $500+ for wood for just the workbench top. Finding an inexpensive wood choice was critical. Necessity is the mother of invention.

View JayT's profile


2254 posts in 862 days

#3 posted 09-16-2013 01:41 AM

Great job! Other than the whole building it backwards thing :-) It should serve you well for many, many years.

Your solution to using softwood for a bench is similar to mine (I used ash for the faces) It works great and helps keep costs down.

-- "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money." Alexis de Tocqueville, 1835

View mjdinsmore's profile


57 posts in 2204 days

#4 posted 09-16-2013 01:52 AM

Haha, I should mention—I’m left handed! :-)

View Sandra's profile


4419 posts in 726 days

#5 posted 09-16-2013 01:52 AM

Great bench and good pictures also.

-- No, I don't want to buy the pink hammer.

View hoss12992's profile


2722 posts in 544 days

#6 posted 09-16-2013 03:10 AM

Great job on the bench

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

View aussiedave's profile


3014 posts in 475 days

#7 posted 09-16-2013 10:42 AM

Beautiful bench… you will get lots of use out of it….great job.

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

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


9887 posts in 1269 days

#8 posted 09-16-2013 12:14 PM

Nice pictures, nice bench! Ditto to what CL810 said, put a Smackdown tag on this beast and join in the discussion there as well. Lots of good use waiting to happen, it’s a beast. Congrats!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive

View mloy365's profile


433 posts in 1781 days

#9 posted 09-16-2013 01:59 PM

Great job!

-- Mike - Northern Upper Michigan

View CarterR's profile


56 posts in 669 days

#10 posted 09-16-2013 02:19 PM

What tail vise are you thinking of adding? I built mine without one and ended up adding the Veritas inset vise later. So far I like it.


View helluvawreck's profile


15761 posts in 1517 days

#11 posted 09-16-2013 03:45 PM

This is a great addition to your shop. Congratulations.

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 Marty Smoley's profile

Marty Smoley

182 posts in 370 days

#12 posted 09-16-2013 04:00 PM

Really nice bench. I love how massive it is. Should be stable for sure

-- Marty,

View GarytheGeek's profile


7 posts in 364 days

#13 posted 09-16-2013 04:48 PM

Great job, it looks fantastic. I’m sure it will be an heirloom!

View DanO0417's profile


1 post in 337 days

#14 posted 10-13-2013 04:50 PM

The bench looks great. Do you have any plans you’d be willing to share? I’m just starting out and I like the way this bench looks.

View WhoMe's profile


1112 posts in 1894 days

#15 posted 10-13-2013 04:54 PM

Yea, another lefty bench…
Nice job and nothing wrong being frugal. Every time I price wood, I think of how much it is going to cost when I eventually build mine.

-- I'm not clumsy.. It's just the floor hates me, the tables and chairs are bullies and the wall gets in the way.. - Mike -

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