I had decided it was time to ‘build a better bench hook,’ because mine had seen duty for many years and was looking a bit scruffy. But, upon considering it, I decided the one I’d found in a tips column years ago was doing everything I could want it to do!
So, here is a photo of the Ideal bench hook.
This is not my original design, but is too old for me to find a reference to in old magazines, so my apologies to the innovative woodworker who came up with this idea.
It has an added base layer on top, shy of the right edge by 1-1/2” so you can almost complete a saw cut in the middle, guided section of the back fence, then move the workpiece to the drop-off to complete the cut, keeping your bench hook unmarred on its top surface.
The four stored dowels can be fitted into randomly-drilled holes to secure odd-shaped workpieces. I also find it handy to stabilize rough-turned bowls or outside-turned bowls while I remove the lathe’s faceplate with a drill on the screws, which makes an amazing amount of torque if trying to hold the bowl by hand. This set up adds safety to that ‘simple’ operation.
I reach for this bench hook so often, I can’t imagine getting along without it. If you make one, you’ll see what I mean! I also blogged it at ” http://barbsid.blogspot.com/":http://barbsid.blogspot.com/