Work Bench design

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Forum topic by Handidad posted 03-05-2009 07:28 PM 940 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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27 posts in 2795 days

03-05-2009 07:28 PM

I’m in the process of building a work bench out of mainly recycled materials. The top will be an office door that is 3’ x 7’ x 1.75” thick. The legs are recycled 3’ long 6×6 pressure treated.
I’ve bought 2 pieces of 3/4” spruce sheathing that I am assembling into a 2’ x 2’ x 6’ carcass. The legs will be fastened to the carcass with 2×4’s and the top will be fastened to the 2×4’s.
I’m planning on having the top supported only at the ends so that there will be a space between the carcass and the top.
The question: What is the recommended space between the carcass and the top? Would 3.5” be a good dimension?
I’m planning on putting some MDF on the top and possibly some banding around the sides. hopefully the 1.75” door won’t sag since it is very heavy. It is solid, but I don’t know if is wood or chip board in the centre. There is arborite on both sides of the door.

3 replies so far

View Francisco Luna's profile

Francisco Luna

936 posts in 2814 days

#1 posted 03-05-2009 07:48 PM

A small drawing (by hand on a tissue!) will be helpful to give any advise

-- Nature is my manifestation of God. I go to nature every day for inspiration in the day's work. I follow in building the principles which nature has used in its domain" Frank Lloyd Wright

View jeh412's profile


129 posts in 2796 days

#2 posted 03-05-2009 07:51 PM

My workbench is somewhat similar. I got some drawer units from an old drugstore—think apothecary cabinet on a large scale—and used those for the base. The legs and stretchers are 4×4 and the top is a 6 foot section of bowling alley. I left about 6 inches open between the cabinets and underside of the top. That gives me space to store some hand tools and drill/drivers.

I think you’ll need some center support for your bench, Handidad. Seven feet is a long span, and may be prone to “bounce” in the center. I have a support arm in the center of my bench and it’s very solid. Best of luck with your project.

-- John, co-owner Sawdust 'n Stitches

View Handidad's profile


27 posts in 2795 days

#3 posted 03-06-2009 04:14 PM

Sorry I don’t have adrawing, I’ve been trying toget going with sketchup, but still no success.
THe carcass is a box for drawers or shelves. There are 3 compartments meaning that there are 2 bulkheads that hopefully will keep it solid.
After reading John’s response I went and weighed the door and legs. The door is 100 lb and each leag is 20 lb. SO they problably won’t bounce but the door might flex a bit in the centre. It will have 6’ between the legs.
So I guess I’ll use 2×6 on edge between the carcass and the top. They will also fasten the legs to the casrcass.
Because the door is only 1.75” thick I’ll add a couple of 2×6 in the cnetre as well.

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