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Is vintage Work bench top worth $60, update: reclaimed

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Forum topic by bubinga posted 05-25-2011 07:12 AM 2801 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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bubinga

861 posts in 1357 days


05-25-2011 07:12 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question maple workbench shaping carving veneering finishing joining sanding sharpening woodburning

I ran across this workbench top on CL,http://detroit.craigslist.org/okl/tls/2391474361.html
VINTAGE HEAVY SOLID MAPLE WORKBENCH TOP
MAPLE TOP. IT MEASURES 6’ X 20 1/4” WIDE X 2 13/16 THICK.
My main bench that I’ve had for a long time, is a Oak solid core door, that has been fitted with skirts, and a nice 10 inch record vise.
I’m thinking I may replace that, with this.
If it is fairly flat I think it would be a good deal, what do you think ?
Also, how much do you think this thing weighs ?

-- E J ------- Always Keep a Firm Grip on Your Tool


14 replies so far

View childress's profile

childress

841 posts in 2231 days


#1 posted 05-25-2011 08:20 AM

Seems like a good deal to me. About 40 bd ft. already laminated together! just resurface, refinish and go.

probably weighs in around 150# I would guess…

Edit: offer $45 first and see what happens. Anyone who posts on craigslist that knows how to sell on there will post higher than what they will take knowing people will try to offer less.

-- Childress Woodworks

View David's profile

David

196 posts in 1353 days


#2 posted 05-25-2011 04:52 PM

According to http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/wood-density-d_40.html, dry maple is 39-47 lb/ft^3.
(72×20.25×2-13/16)/12^3 = 2.37 cubic feet of wood, therefore somewhere in the 92-111lb range if it were solid wood.

I have an old maple lab bench top that’s 8’x30”x2” that I converted into a workbench (see my workshop page) and I love it. There were a couple of burns on it so it’s not perfect, but I got it for free from my grandfather, who actually worked on it back when he was in school, so the history is priceless.

I’d say it’s worth it, even if you can’t bargain the price down.

-- Perilous to all of us are the devices of an art deeper than we ourselves possess. --Gandalf the Grey http://davidwahl.org/category/woodworking/

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1382 days


#3 posted 05-25-2011 05:02 PM

Nobrainer for me, Bubinga. I’ve spent $60 on steaks before and I don’t even remember what they tasted like. I say do it.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Loren's profile

Loren

7736 posts in 2337 days


#4 posted 05-25-2011 05:07 PM

Totally worth it.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View Dan's profile

Dan

3543 posts in 1569 days


#5 posted 05-25-2011 06:15 PM

I don’t live too far from Detroit so you better grab it before I do! haha

I would say its worth it.

-- Dan - "Collector of Hand Planes"

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

5515 posts in 2065 days


#6 posted 05-25-2011 07:03 PM

Worth it IMO. I’d guess it weighs 60-70#.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View bubinga's profile

bubinga

861 posts in 1357 days


#7 posted 05-26-2011 02:47 AM

Thanks !!! for the input ,just waiting for the person to reply to my email
Looks like Maple is selling for about $3.75 a BF around here,so it would cost more to buy the stock to build it.
Being almost 3in thick ,there is plenty to work with ,to flatten it out, if it is not
Dan , you stay away from my bench top :)

-- E J ------- Always Keep a Firm Grip on Your Tool

View Cosmicsniper's profile

Cosmicsniper

2199 posts in 1848 days


#8 posted 05-26-2011 03:12 AM

You just cracked me up, Al! That’s both funny and true. I know that that benchtop would last a lot longer than the $60 worth of gas I put in my Toyota this morning! Unfortunately, I probably know what that still tastes like!

-- jay, www.allaboutastro.com

View bubinga's profile

bubinga

861 posts in 1357 days


#9 posted 06-04-2011 05:50 AM

OKAY ! After three new tires, look at this post to find out why, Dewalt RAS Worth $70 ? : and several e-mails back and forth, to find the time to hook up, I finally went and picked up the vintage benchtop. Any time you can reclaim wood it’s a good thing.
Have you ever walked into a really old (like 100 years or so ) building, that hasn’t been in use, like an old farmhouse with lots of woodwork, an old schoolhouse full of old wooden desks, and it has a weird smell, the vintage wood. Or, am I just weird ? Well ! That’s what this top smells like. It is old .The guy said it came out of a abandoned Air Force Base. Having been seasoned that long it should be stable I would think.
Well ! when I eyeballed it, it looked pretty good to me.
In one of the pictures below you will see, I stuck a basic straight edge on it, and it looks pretty darn flat to me.
I’m sure this old chunk of wood has a lot of history behind it, unfortunately I will be taking away some of its patina, while resurfacing it, so what do you think the best way to do this would be ?

-- E J ------- Always Keep a Firm Grip on Your Tool

View BobTheFish's profile

BobTheFish

361 posts in 1241 days


#10 posted 06-04-2011 06:09 AM

resurfacing? Ehhh… It’s so beautiful. And if it’s straight as can be, I’d just sand it down a bit to get rid of the worst (leave some of the character. Scars and marks are war wounds!) and oil it. I don’t care much for work surfaces with a heavier finish on them, and when it comes time to refinish later, it’s just another light sand and some more oil.

View bubinga's profile

bubinga

861 posts in 1357 days


#11 posted 06-04-2011 06:28 AM

I looked close ,and did not see any oil, as of yet, just paint ,and scuffs

-- E J ------- Always Keep a Firm Grip on Your Tool

View Loren's profile

Loren

7736 posts in 2337 days


#12 posted 06-04-2011 06:34 AM

I just plane out the weirdness (usually at the corners) until it’s
flat enough for working boards flat, put some oil on it and get
back to using the bench.

The bench does acquire a lived-in patina this way as there’s plenty
of tearouts and stuff, so you won’t have an immaculate bench.

Two schools of thought on bench immaculacy: make it look like
fine furniture to impress clients (Frank Klausz) or let it look like
it’s getting hard use (old school).

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View ShedPlans's profile

ShedPlans

3 posts in 1238 days


#13 posted 06-04-2011 11:12 PM

Bubinga, I am not much of a woodworker, don’t even have a work bench myself, that being said I can remember many times helping out older family members who did have a shop. That work top to me looks awesome as is, full of rich looking history. In my opinion I liken it to how many people today are afraid to get a scratch on their truck, why even have a truck if you are not going to use it as a truck? Same applies here, as long as it’s level I say keep it looking as close to tattered and torn as you can, makes it look real. If I walked in your shop and there was a perfect looking brand new work top personally I wouldn’t take you or your woodworking word as seriously as I would if I saw that beauty in there.

-- Time for that firewood drying additon? http://hubpages.com/hub/Are-You-In-Need-Of-Firewood-Storage-Shed-Plans

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1382 days


#14 posted 06-04-2011 11:15 PM

BubbieBuddy, if you ever want to unload that top. PM me. It’s glorious beyond words.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

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