I am currently reading the recently published Workbenches from Design & Theory to Construction & Use by Christopher Schwarz.
Most workbench books and articles describes plans for various workbenches and how to build them. Chris’s book is different and greatly altered my perspective on workbenches. Here are a few key points:
- Workbench feature selection should be based on what you want to do with the workbench. He does a great job describing specific functions and corresponding features.
- Workbenches can be made out of lots of different (sometimes cheap!) woods. For instance, Southern yellow pine is actually a pretty good workbench wood because it is a very stiff wood.
- Workbenches are really just sophisticated clamping systems. As such, they are just as useful to power tool junkies (for sanding, routing, etc.) as to hand tool Neaderthals.
I strongly recommend the book to anybody that is interested in workbenches!
-- Roger - Havertown, Pennsylvania