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The lil' bench hook that could!

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Project by jjw5858 posted 145 days ago 1518 views 6 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello friends, something very simple and yet so effective…..the age old and always useful bench hook!

What would we do without one? Wether your style is handwork or power tools, at some point this simple and effective jig will be used more than you know when working at your bench.

Now of course I went a little overboard in the care for my bench hook as I sanded this 150, 220, to 400. Then 2 coats of Wanlut Danish Oil, 2 coats of Hopes Tung Oil, and finally a coat of good ole BLO.

But this hook was not intended for me to throw together in a fast huff and be on my way to something else. This hook was intended as a lesson of quality. My previous works have included good efforts and much learning, but now I wanted to have a better grasp of the gluing, sanding and finishing as well as the use of the hand tools in building it.

I took more time on this than should be legal. But the time was not the goal, the understanding of the 2 words were. Those two words that have been my theme are pride and care. This work being my enjoyed pastime can only give me my best rewards when I make sure that pride and care are the top factors and mantras of my creating anything.

The shop was cold and challenging as our polar vortex continued to make temperatures sure to chill anyones outdoor ambitions. I had my little heater aiding my hands to keep a useful feel as I used all of the essential old time goodies from the Stanley #4 to my Grandfathers Disston back saw. The lumber was humble cheap pine and a piece of old 2×4. My only intentions were to shave and relieve the tanned and dirty outskirts with my blade and unveil a bright renewed fresh timber. Each pass of the #4 was a step closer. I began to get a nice warmth going with each rhythmic sweep of the blade. What a wonderful hiss having thin ribbons of pine fall about my hands and tumble to the ground. Each piece began to shape as true as I would try with my square.

Nothing on my bench was in much order, although the tangled mess of past shavings and various tools somehow felt like they were supporting my task more than getting in my way of it’s creation. Once everything was planed I set my measures for the sawing, then 3 doses of grits for some good hand sanding.

The pieces were almost as smooth as silk once worked over, I was encouraged by my efforts and set my clamps up and rehearsed my glue up routine.

Once everything was set and dry I added screws underneath for extra strength. The final work would be some days of Danish and Tung oils.

I enjoyed the time put in on this, and yes I can attest that there was more pride and care put in on this “lil’ bench hook that could then probably were needed, but some good lessons were learned. Things I can improve upon in my future work.

Thank you all for taking a look and reading. I always feel honored to hear from all of you and look forward to being inspired by all of your great work.

Take care gang, have fun at your bench, and be well!

Joe

-- "Make something you love tomorrow...and do it slowly" JLB





13 comments so far

View Todd Barrone's profile

Todd Barrone

455 posts in 873 days


#1 posted 145 days ago

Very nice design.

-- "Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway" John Wayne https://www.facebook.com/BarroneContracting

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4089 posts in 1457 days


#2 posted 145 days ago

Joe and you enjoyed the time well spent
Handy wee things, at the moment mine might qualify for
the ugliest. Typical I hash a quick one fae the scrap pile
and it has outlasted all the others and is always where i need
it when I want it so I guess it will do a bit longer.

Jamie

-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

13305 posts in 939 days


#3 posted 145 days ago

Good job, nice design

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

View Woodwrecker's profile

Woodwrecker

3562 posts in 2176 days


#4 posted 145 days ago

Handy item for sure.
Yours looks really nice as well.

-- Having fun...Eric

View Robsshop's profile

Robsshop

807 posts in 1576 days


#5 posted 145 days ago

Thanks for posting your lil’ hook, I am in the throws of building a new bench hook myself and I had never seen that notch feature. I built a hook several years ago after learning of its simple but affective purpose and I think I use every time I’m down in the shop in some capacity. I will definitely be adding the notch now that you have shared your version of a well made work bench “must have” ! Good stuff !

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

View llwynog's profile

llwynog

282 posts in 1180 days


#6 posted 145 days ago

Very nice. The notch in the fence looks like a useful improvement on the common design.

-- Fabrice - "On est bien bĂȘte mais on sent bien quand on se fait mal" - my grandfather

View Roger's profile

Roger

14146 posts in 1405 days


#7 posted 145 days ago

Simple and very effective. Gr8 thinking.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View Dan's profile

Dan

16 posts in 550 days


#8 posted 144 days ago

Very nice. That was a very good read too.

-- Dear God, Thank You for wood putty...Amen.

View dougmk's profile

dougmk

9 posts in 202 days


#9 posted 144 days ago

Very nice, I will have to make one.

View Dave's profile

Dave

11142 posts in 1441 days


#10 posted 144 days ago

love it !

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com

View mafe's profile

mafe

9456 posts in 1690 days


#11 posted 140 days ago

Super sweet detail.
Love it.
Best thoughts,
Mads

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View stefang's profile

stefang

12588 posts in 1935 days


#12 posted 136 days ago

Good work Joe and a very handy accessory. I like your ‘V’ notch idea, which I haven’t seen before.

I use my bench hook all the time. I have found that it can be used with a Japanese pull saw too when hooked over the back edge of the bench or the the tool tray behind my bench top. I also have a flat piece the same thickness that I can place under a workpiece at the opposite end to keep it the same height as the bench hook while cross cutting.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11072 posts in 1706 days


#13 posted 135 days ago

Nice. It is such a simple but handy tool for the shop!!

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

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