More benchtop advice, please

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Forum topic by sikrap posted 12-18-2009 05:02 PM 907 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1121 posts in 3533 days

12-18-2009 05:02 PM

Okay,I have the base for the new workbench done and I’ve glued the 2 layers of MDF together for the top. The next steps will be to:

1- Attach the top to the bench. I’m using S clips here so there’s no issue
2- Glue a piece of 3/4” plywood to the bottom of the top for a vise
3- Pre-drill for the lag bolts to mount the vise
4- Mount the vise
5- Glue the hardwood edging

If I’ve missed anything or I’m doing something wrong, PLEASE let me know. I do have questions on whether the MDF is strong enough to hold the vise. The vise is an oldie but goodie and probably weighs 20-25 pounds. Is that going to be too heavy for the MDF? Would I be better off using carriage bolts instead of lag bolts to mount the vise? Will the weight of the vise be too much for gluing the plywood spacer to the MDF? Thanks!!

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

2 replies so far

View davidpettinger's profile


661 posts in 3374 days

#1 posted 12-18-2009 05:25 PM

When you apply the edging, raise it up 1/4” so you can drop a piece of tempered hardboard as a replaceable top. You can drill a 1” hole through the MDF and plywood so you can push up the hardboard to replace it. this way you can refresh your bench every time the top gets too worn.

-- Methods are many,Principles are few.Methods change often,Principles never do.

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

6241 posts in 3368 days

#2 posted 12-18-2009 05:30 PM

Morning sikrap: Sounds like you got things going your way. One thing I would do is put the edging on first before I mounted the vise. The 3/4” ply should bring the vice up flush with the top—no problem. Yes—the MDF is plenty strong enough to hold the vice. Lag screws will work just fine. Just be sure to get them long enough to go through the vice, ply, and MDF. I’d say 2 to 2 1/2” lag screws will be fine. No problem on the weight of the vice. One thing I might suggest—- I don’t think it’s necessary to glue the ply to the bottom of the MDF, but that’s up to you. If you ever changed vices(?), the holes may not line up. If not, you’re good to go.

-- " It's a rat race out there, and the rats are winning....!!"

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