LumberJocks

Flip Top Workstation - width/depth vs height w/o being top heavy

  • Advertise with us

« back to Designing Woodworking Projects forum

Forum topic by Underdog posted 06-03-2015 07:06 PM 1019 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Underdog's profile

Underdog

904 posts in 1501 days


06-03-2015 07:06 PM

In an effort to avoid all the lifting and shifting I’ve been subjecting my back to….

I’m designing a couple of flip top workstations for my 12 inch Delta planer, Delta scrollsaw, Rigid oscillating spindle sander, and Craftsman disc/belt sander. (They all currently reside on the floor – darnit!)

I’m contemplating possibly putting my Hitachi sliding miter saw and CarveWright on flip tops (not necessarily together), but that needs more thinking about.

My main question is how narrow (width and depth) can I make it without it being too tippy at 36 inches high? The first Sketchup Plan I looked at had it at 36×36x36. For my little shop (16’ x 20’) that’s just too gargantuan. Obviously I need to accommodate the width/depth of the tools, and the thickness of the ends and axle bearings, but beyond that, what kind of base dimensions vs height ratio should I maintain?

The other question I have is whether I need to try to balance the weight of the tools on top/bottom of the flip top. I’m guessing that if you have a lightweight tool on one side, and a heavy one on the other, that it could pose a bit of trouble when flipping the top….
Also, other than the weight, any other considerations as to what combinations to put together on the flip tops?

-- "woodworker with an asterisk"


7 replies so far

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

16243 posts in 3684 days


#1 posted 06-03-2015 07:28 PM

Last question first: I don’t think the relative weights of the tools is a big deal. I made one with a miter saw on one side and nothing but a work surface on the other, and flipping it is really no problem at all.

As for dimensions and stability, again, I don’t think it is a big issue, especially if you are going to have a tool on each side. The tool underneath is going to act as ballast to help keep things steady. (Just my gut feeling.)

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Underdog's profile

Underdog

904 posts in 1501 days


#2 posted 06-03-2015 08:52 PM

So you think I could get away with 28”w x 28”d x 36”h plus about 4” high casters?

-- "woodworker with an asterisk"

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

16243 posts in 3684 days


#3 posted 06-03-2015 10:25 PM

I would think so.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View nkawtg's profile

nkawtg

204 posts in 717 days


#4 posted 06-03-2015 11:03 PM

I’ve noticed some flip top plans call for a compartment on the bottom for ballast sand. Some have built from these plans and skipped the sand without any trouble.
Worst case is if you feel it may be top heavy you could opt for the sand compartment.

View Holbs's profile

Holbs

1378 posts in 1495 days


#5 posted 06-03-2015 11:48 PM

FlipTops… what a fantastic engineering design! Anything is possible. I have my lunchbox planer / 6” jointer on a fliptop, and I have my Bosch Miter Saw / nothing on other side…at the end of my table saw. In same picture as my table saw, you can see my Delta 10” drill press / grizzly 9”x48” combo sander on it’s own fliptop as well.
I find no problem to flip over my miter saw with nothing on the other side of the fliptop. Even if un-even weight, such as my drill press / sander combo, it’s no big deal.

-- Yes, my profile picture is of a Carpenter Bee! The name is derived from the Ancient Greek "wood-cutter"

View JeffP's profile

JeffP

573 posts in 857 days


#6 posted 06-04-2015 12:22 AM

For the sanders, you will sometimes be “pushing” a workpiece against the disc or the spindle to get more aggressive material removal.

For those, I would be tempted to make a slightly larger cabinet. I also think lowering the center of gravity with some sand at the bottom makes a lot of sense. The other two tools you mentioned one does not typically apply lateral forces to, and for that reason I would say they can be a bit smaller/lighter. (although the planer is really heavy all by itself.)

BTW, don’t forget to use locking casters for both cabinets!

-- Last week I finally got my $*i# together. Unfortunately, it was in my shop, so I will probably never find it again.

View JeffP's profile

JeffP

573 posts in 857 days


#7 posted 06-04-2015 12:30 AM

For the planer/scroll-saw combo, why not consider just making a slightly taller cabinet that does not swivel.

I would put the scroll saw on top, and put the planer “inside” of an elevated shelf that gets it a couple feet off the ground. As long as you can feed stuff in one side and get it out the other (and get to any adjustment knobs and the power switch), you really don’t need it to be “on top” when you’re using it.

Since the planer is probably the heaviest of the tools you mentioned, I would be tempted not to try to “rotate” it.

I would also probably look for a way to have removable extension “tables” for the planer part. Some way you can pull some extra pieces off of the side of the cart and insert them as extension tables for the planer when you’re using it. A lunchbox planer works a lot better with some good in and outfeed tables on it.

(and kudos to holbs for using the same set of extension tables for both the planer and the jointer with his nifty rotator)

-- Last week I finally got my $*i# together. Unfortunately, it was in my shop, so I will probably never find it again.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com