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QUESTION: Exposed drawer slides to save money?

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Forum topic by Jim posted 10-15-2015 02:52 PM 1219 views 1 time favorited 32 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Jim

104 posts in 1127 days


10-15-2015 02:52 PM

Topic tags/keywords: workbench ras radial arm saw miter station construction help idea plans

Hey everyone, I’m in the design and planning stage of making a 10’ long miter / RAS bench for my workshop. I need some help with the majority of the design. I have two options, one is nicer, but more expensive, the other saves money, gets the job done, but leaves my drawer slides underneath exposed to sawdust.

Here is the first:

Based off traditional cabinet designs. Made from 3/4” hardwood plywood costing more, but creating an actual cabinet for the drawers and to support the workbench. This would inhibit dust from everyday working to get into the tool drawers as well as gumming up the drawer slides.

Here is an image (not showing drawers or workbench top)

The second idea:

built from clear pine studs planed square in my planer. Cost is WAY less, basically just creating a frame to support the workbench top and miter / RAS saws, and a frame to attach slides and drawers to. This would inevitably allow sawdust into the drawers and into the mechanics of the slides.

This image shows a basic frame construction with pocket holes or maybe biscuit joints, and the drawer slides are in green.

I know this is an obvious question, and a LOT of it is based on cost, inevitably leading to loss of useful lifetime of drawer slides. It may be a hard one to answer for you guys, since you aren’t me… but any new ideas, thoughts on saving money through other construction methods etc would be greatly appreciated. I’m leaning towards the cabinet style, though the cost will be 4X as much probably…

Extra Notes:
Garage / floor is uneven, so leveling feet will be needed either way
top will be 2×3/4” MDF with hardboard replaceable surface
whichever method I choose, i’ll trim it all out in soft maple or clear pine
also considering leaving space behind drawers or above on the wall for Dust Collection ducting.

thanks!

-- Jim from Rivertown Woodcraft | Grand Rapids, MI | www.YouTube.com/user/RivertownWoodcraft


32 replies so far

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

826 posts in 1194 days


#1 posted 10-15-2015 03:29 PM

What’s the problem, Jim? You are the one that will be using this cabinet. Spend more to make it look good? It’s just a garage cabinet built to support a saw. Ok, I’m done on that….......

As far as keeping the slides clean, spend the extra money saved by using 2×4’s and use undermount drawer slides. They’ll stay cleaner longer than side mounts unless you blow dust from the inside of the cabinet. If you instead used side mount slides, you could use that fuzzy stuff some people use as a barrier around loose openings to keep bugs and other obnoxious things from gaining entry to sensitives areas, such as drawer slides. Unfortunately, I’ve gained access to your thread. Good luck. ................. Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

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Jim

104 posts in 1127 days


#2 posted 10-15-2015 03:59 PM

Thanks for your input Jerry, under mount slides is a great idea, and you can always unsubscribe if you think this is too novice for you.

Welcome to the internet.. .... ..........

-- Jim from Rivertown Woodcraft | Grand Rapids, MI | www.YouTube.com/user/RivertownWoodcraft

View joey502's profile

joey502

487 posts in 982 days


#3 posted 10-15-2015 04:28 PM

I began woodworking in 2007, my shop fixtures have been built and rebuilt since that time. I am in the planning stages of a new wall of base and wall cabinets for a miter station myself. It should be the end of the shop makeovers for the foreseeable future. When I build items for my shop cost is near the bottom of my considerations. I don’t get too out of hand but my shop projects go over time and budget every time.

Woodworking time is limited for me due to the amount of business travel required. I want my shop to look good, feel comfortable and function well.

I know most folks will say that it is just a bench to hold a saw, quick and cheap. They would be right but your dresser is just a box to hold your clothes, why spend so many resources there?

I would say to make what you want. If the stand is only utility so you can move on to project that you want to make then quick and cheap. If not spend the time and money.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

22021 posts in 1802 days


#4 posted 10-15-2015 04:30 PM

I am cheap. I would go with the open design.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Jim's profile

Jim

104 posts in 1127 days


#5 posted 10-15-2015 04:33 PM



I began woodworking in 2007, my shop fixtures have been built and rebuilt since that time. I am in the planning stages of a new wall of base and wall cabinets for a miter station myself. It should be the end of the shop makeovers for the foreseeable future. When I build items for my shop cost is near the bottom of my considerations. I don t get too out of hand but my shop projects go over time and budget every time.

Woodworking time is limited for me due to the amount of business travel required. I want my shop to look good, feel comfortable and function well.

I know most folks will say that it is just a bench to hold a saw, quick and cheap. They would be right but your dresser is just a box to hold your clothes, why spend so many resources there?

I would say to make what you want. If the stand is only utility so you can move on to project that you want to make then quick and cheap. If not spend the time and money.

- joey502

Beautiful response Joey, thank you

-- Jim from Rivertown Woodcraft | Grand Rapids, MI | www.YouTube.com/user/RivertownWoodcraft

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

4032 posts in 1816 days


#6 posted 10-15-2015 04:40 PM

I take the opposite view, I think a drawer full of sawdust is unappealing and fumbling through saw dust to find the sharp objects that are likely to be stored there is not my idea of a good time. It only hurts once to do it right the first time. You’re the one who will have to live with it either way, so of course it’s your call.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View Richard's profile

Richard

1898 posts in 2155 days


#7 posted 10-15-2015 05:07 PM

You could always make it with the 2X4 frame and then skin it with 1/4” plywood so it is strong enough t hold the RAS and also closed in to enclose the drawers . I would half lap the horizontal 2X4’s into the vertical ones.

View Jim's profile

Jim

104 posts in 1127 days


#8 posted 10-15-2015 05:33 PM



You could always make it with the 2X4 frame and then skin it with 1/4” plywood so it is strong enough t hold the RAS and also closed in to enclose the drawers . I would half lap the horizontal 2X4 s into the vertical ones.

- Richard

Thanks Richard! Another great idea. I think I’m going price out doing it right. Then in future ships I can avoid redoing it”right”. Thanks everyone

Jim

-- Jim from Rivertown Woodcraft | Grand Rapids, MI | www.YouTube.com/user/RivertownWoodcraft

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3022 posts in 1262 days


#9 posted 10-15-2015 05:53 PM

I am definitely in the “my time is limited, I’m not going to make it on beautiful shop pieces” camp. I just built some drawers to fit under the middle of my workbench. The whole point of making drawers, for me, was to keep them neat and clean, so however I would construct drawers, I wouldn’t make them open to dust and dirt getting in. If I didn’t care about that, I’d just make some quick and dirty shelves.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

1767 posts in 603 days


#10 posted 10-15-2015 06:53 PM



You could always make it with the 2X4 frame and then skin it with 1/4” plywood so it is strong enough t hold the RAS and also closed in to enclose the drawers . I would half lap the horizontal 2X4 s into the vertical ones.

- Richard

+1 I was actually going to suggest skinning it with hardboard since your buying it anyway for your top but ply is a little nicer looking. If you really wanted to save $ and make it functional, skin it with pegboard and then you can hang blades and jigs on the sides.

For your leg levelers, I made some recently for a shop cart using 1/4” all thread, tee nuts and some MDF scrap. I cut 2” disks from the MDF and drilled & tapped for the all thread. Then epoxied the all thread into the MDF. I dipped the MDF disks in Plasti-dip to keep them from sliding around. Installed tee nuts in the bottom of the legs and threaded the all thread/ disks in. Use a jam nut to keep ‘em where you put ‘em if you have trouble with them backing out.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View Jim's profile

Jim

104 posts in 1127 days


#11 posted 10-15-2015 06:59 PM


For your leg levelers, I made some recently for a shop cart using 1/4” all thread, tee nuts and some MDF scrap. I cut 2” disks from the MDF and drilled & tapped for the all thread. Then epoxied the all thread into the MDF. I dipped the MDF disks in Plasti-dip to keep them from sliding around. Installed tee nuts in the bottom of the legs and threaded the all thread/ disks in. Use a jam nut to keep em where you put em if you have trouble with them backing out.

- HokieKen

I like the peg board idea a lot!

And yeah leveling mounts can get expensive, but I had considered something like that too. Making some 2” cubes from scrap, attaching that to the bottom of the cabinets and inserting a Tee Nut, then using a less expensive swiveling level mounts from the Tee Nut to the floor.

-- Jim from Rivertown Woodcraft | Grand Rapids, MI | www.YouTube.com/user/RivertownWoodcraft

View Richard's profile

Richard

1898 posts in 2155 days


#12 posted 10-15-2015 07:08 PM

The leg levelers are easy to make and their are a lot different ways to do them. A quick search on LJ’s or youtube should find a lot of examples. The pegboard can be good for storage but it will still let dust into the inside area but not as much as no covering at all.

View Jim's profile

Jim

104 posts in 1127 days


#13 posted 10-15-2015 07:10 PM



The leg levelers are easy to make and their are a lot different ways to do them. A quick search on LJ s or youtube should find a lot of examples. The pegboard can be good for storage but it will still let dust into the inside area but not as much as no covering at all.

- Richard

Agreed

Thanks also, checking Youtube for the levelers now!

-- Jim from Rivertown Woodcraft | Grand Rapids, MI | www.YouTube.com/user/RivertownWoodcraft

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

2853 posts in 2695 days


#14 posted 10-15-2015 07:13 PM

Jim, I built my miter saw station using cabinet design. On the other hand, I built the work bench with construction grade materials. So I have both of what you are considering. And I have full extension ballbearing draw slides in both cabinets. Three years and counting, and no dust problems. Yes, there is dust, just no problem opening or closing the drawers.

There are a lot of pictures and description in my blog…
Garage Makeover
http://lumberjocks.com/MT_Stringer/blog/series/6453

And my New Workbench…
http://lumberjocks.com/projects/68635

Hope you find this info helpful.
Mike

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View Jim's profile

Jim

104 posts in 1127 days


#15 posted 10-15-2015 07:26 PM



Jim, I built my miter saw station using cabinet design. On the other hand, I built the work bench with construction grade materials. So I have both of what you are considering. And I have full extension ballbearing draw slides in both cabinets. Three years and counting, and no dust problems. Yes, there is dust, just no problem opening or closing the drawers.

There are a lot of pictures and description in my blog…
Garage Makeover
http://lumberjocks.com/MT_Stringer/blog/series/6453

And my New Workbench…
http://lumberjocks.com/projects/68635

Hope you find this info helpful.
Mike

- MT_Stringer

Thanks for your input! I’ll check out your links in a bit!

I found this video very helpful and I like the design a lot. I think this is what I’m going to do.


View on YouTube

-- Jim from Rivertown Woodcraft | Grand Rapids, MI | www.YouTube.com/user/RivertownWoodcraft

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