Help design bench seating with storage

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Forum topic by JoeinJupiter posted 10-02-2016 08:25 PM 137 views 0 times favorited 1 reply Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 648 days

10-02-2016 08:25 PM

I’m looking for some ideas on a project I need to make. I need to make a L shaped bench seating with open storage bins (about 16” wide)below. This is for a gym so I need it to be durable and easy to clean/maintain. I was thinking of laminating it but thought it may be a pain. I prefer to join it with pocket screws but am open to other thoughts. The bench is going to be about 12’ x 7’ about 15” deep. I also thought about laminating sheets of plywood first then making cuts but that will be hard with the pocket screws. I am looking to make this with as little headache as possible lol. I’m also up for painting it but thought the laminate would be better?

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View JBrow's profile


743 posts in 338 days

#1 posted 10-05-2016 12:36 AM


Considering pre-finished plywood might solve some of your problems. It would be reasonably durable and pocket screw joinery could be use as with any wood. If pre-finished plywood is used, edge banding would be required. A router and a flush trim bit could flush up the edge banding unless veneer edge banding is used. If you can find the correct sheen, polyurethane would probably be a good match to the plywood finish. I would probably also edge band the plywood with solid wood where the bench meets the floor, using a water resistant or water proof glue. Otherwise, water on the floor could deteriorate the plywood. The only finishing required with pre-finished plywood is the edge banding.

I have a personal disdain for pocket screws, but then I am hobbyist so the time required to join materials with traditional joinery is not an issue with which I must contend. My personal preference is what I think is called locking rabbet joinery. I plow a 3/8” groove in ¾”plywood and the size the mating plywood tongue to fit the groove. It does take more time and I find that after cutting all the grooves and tongues, assembly can be somewhat confusing. I like to dry assemble the project and mark the joints with painter’s tape bearing a joint number and then proceed to glue up. If woodworking were my living, I would reconsider pocket screw joinery since I believe it is faster and easier than cutting tongue and grooves.

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