Need help with building a workbench top with glued 4x4s - Page 2 - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
post #21 of 57 Old 01-15-2012, 12:13 AM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: So Cal
Posts: 36
View blue sky's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by cabinetman View Post
If you want the butcher block look, you will have to have the 1.5" edge on top. I won't repeat removing the rounded edges, as that has been suggested a few times already.

I will say that wider boards, like 2x6, or 2x8 usually are more select than 2x4's. If you orient the wide face for the top, you don't need too many. If you buy 10' lengths you'll get two per length.

IMO, whichever way you orient the lumber, i.e., on edge or flat, and try to do a glue up with all thread, it won't work like using clamps and cauls. I know because I've tried to do it that way. By the time you drill all the holes, get the glue applied, get the rod in, washers, and nuts, and start to tighten them up, your glue will start to kick. You may not have enough time to line everything up, as the nuts on the thread don't turn that fast.








.
So unless someone tells me something better, this is my plan: I'll use 2x10s and rip them in half and rip the rolled edges. Then do a quick sanding of the board faces so they butt up clean, I'll make a jig to line up 3 dowel holes on each piece and I'll chamfer the 1/2" dowels too. Doing a dry run will help me to see how things will line up. If everything checks out, I'll glue, clamp, and let sit for week. Then I'll clean up the ends on the table saw, then run a sander over it (I don't have a planer or joiner). Finished with a urethane to protect it going forward. It'll be a lot of work, but I looked online for butcher block tops and they go for at least $250 for this size. No way I'm paying that much!
blue sky is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #22 of 57 Old 01-15-2012, 08:44 AM
Old School
 
cabinetman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: So. Florida
Posts: 24,027
View cabinetman's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by blue sky View Post
So unless someone tells me something better, this is my plan: I'll use 2x10s and rip them in half and rip the rolled edges. Then do a quick sanding of the board faces so they butt up clean, I'll make a jig to line up 3 dowel holes on each piece and I'll chamfer the 1/2" dowels too. Doing a dry run will help me to see how things will line up. If everything checks out, I'll glue, clamp, and let sit for week. Then I'll clean up the ends on the table saw, then run a sander over it (I don't have a planer or joiner). Finished with a urethane to protect it going forward. It'll be a lot of work, but I looked online for butcher block tops and they go for at least $250 for this size. No way I'm paying that much!
For a glue up, IMO, the dowels are unnecessary, just glue and clamps and cauls. For a workbench top, you might want to rethink the finish. A film finish will get damaged, and it's a PITA to refinish. So, the question is...do you want a conversation piece, or a work top?

You could throw on a sheet of 1/4" tempered Masonite. It's cheap, hard, and will protect the top. Replace when needed.






.
cabinetman is offline  
post #23 of 57 Old 01-15-2012, 10:39 AM
I run with chisels.
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: AZ
Posts: 913
View joesbucketorust's Photo Album My Photos
If you have a router then it is very easy to flatten the top once you've got it glued up, so I'd just skip the dowels and clamp them boards up in pairs, then glue up the pairs, and then the pairs of pairs and so on until you have a top as big as you want. Let it dry, put it in place, and flatten with the router. (I like handplanes, but all the glue-lines make router easier.)
I'd also forgo the tempered hardboard or 1/4" masonite or all the other fake tops that are used to protect the bench. Tops get dinged, scratched, gouged etc. When it gets too ugly for you to look at, screw the rails on the sides and route off just enough to make it flat. That's one of the advantages of starting with a thick slab.

Insert witty signature line here.
joesbucketorust is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #24 of 57 Old 01-15-2012, 06:36 PM
Member
 
Backyardhack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 43
View Backyardhack's Photo Album My Photos
If it helps to offer another alternative I built my work bench using a recycled 4' bath vanity. I then added two 2x4's and some wheels from a HF dolley and put a top on it. I corner braced it to reinforce it and I can tell you that it will easily hold 400+ lbs without a problem. The upside is you get additional storage that you don't have to build.

Name:  image-3585435471.jpg
Views: 2514
Size:  32.7 KB

Bill
Backyardhack is offline  
post #25 of 57 Old 01-16-2012, 06:03 PM
Senior Member
 
HandToolGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: La Grange, Kentucky
Posts: 284
View HandToolGuy's Photo Album My Photos
There are some excellent resources out there to use. Almost all of the woodworking mag's websites have plans available.

I can personally recommend "The Workbench Design Book" by Christopher Schwarz and the Popular Woodworking Staff as a book that actually discusses why some folks do it one way and some another and the plusses and minuses of each design. In the end, I built Bob Lang's design, and it has worked out great for me.
Attached Images
 
HandToolGuy is offline  
post #26 of 57 Old 01-16-2012, 08:02 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: West Texas
Posts: 291
View Firewalker's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by woodnthings View Post
Go and sight down one of those 20 footers and then see how much you want them. !0 ft 2xs arent that expensive and will bend to clamp pressure easier than a 4 x 4 if they are a little warped. And you will not want to rip the 4 x 4s they will curve like crazy after they're cut and to top it all off a 10" saw blade will cut up at most 3 1/4" and the 4 x 4 measures 3 1/2". All this is free advice of course is based on experience. bill
It's free advice but it's solid advice. I agree with everything you said here.
Firewalker is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Firewalker For This Useful Post:
woodnthings (01-16-2012)
post #27 of 57 Old 01-16-2012, 11:42 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: So Cal
Posts: 36
View blue sky's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by cabinetman View Post
For a glue up, IMO, the dowels are unnecessary, just glue and clamps and cauls. For a workbench top, you might want to rethink the finish. A film finish will get damaged, and it's a PITA to refinish. So, the question is...do you want a conversation piece, or a work top?

You could throw on a sheet of 1/4" tempered Masonite. It's cheap, hard, and will protect the top. Replace when needed.









.
My thoughts on the urethane was to simply protect it from moisture and any oils that get spilled on it. I don't want to put masonite or other surface on it. I like the butcher block look. Is there a finish I can put on it that would do what I'm looking for?
blue sky is offline  
post #28 of 57 Old 01-17-2012, 12:08 AM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: So Cal
Posts: 36
View blue sky's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by HandToolGuy View Post
There are some excellent resources out there to use. Almost all of the woodworking mag's websites have plans available.

I can personally recommend "The Workbench Design Book" by Christopher Schwarz and the Popular Woodworking Staff as a book that actually discusses why some folks do it one way and some another and the plusses and minuses of each design. In the end, I built Bob Lang's design, and it has worked out great for me.
Thanks for the recommendation. I built the frame yesterday (I tried to attach a pic, but I couldn't get the pic size small enough to upload here) and will build the top next weekend.
blue sky is offline  
post #29 of 57 Old 01-17-2012, 12:14 AM
Trytore Member
 
Shop Dad's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Central New Jersey
Posts: 2,764
View Shop Dad's Photo Album My Photos
Danish Oil

Going back to Christopher Schwartz, in his "Rules for Workbenches" article he says:

Quote:
Rule No. 9: No Fancy Finishes
When finishing a workbench, less is more. A shiny film finish allows your work to scoot all over the bench. And a film finish will crack when struck by a hammer or dead-blow mallet. Choose a finish that is easy to apply, offers some protection and doesn’t build up a thick film. I like an oil/varnish blend (sold as Danish Oil), or just boiled linseed oil.
Shop Dad is offline  
post #30 of 57 Old 01-18-2012, 03:52 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: So Cal
Posts: 36
View blue sky's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by joesbucketorust View Post
If you have a router then it is very easy to flatten the top once you've got it glued up, so I'd just skip the dowels and clamp them boards up in pairs, then glue up the pairs, and then the pairs of pairs and so on until you have a top as big as you want. Let it dry, put it in place, and flatten with the router. (I like handplanes, but all the glue-lines make router easier.)
I'd also forgo the tempered hardboard or 1/4" masonite or all the other fake tops that are used to protect the bench. Tops get dinged, scratched, gouged etc. When it gets too ugly for you to look at, screw the rails on the sides and route off just enough to make it flat. That's one of the advantages of starting with a thick slab.
What do you mean by "flatten the top" with a router? (I have a router but haven't used it much). Are you saying that there's an attachment I can use to sand the top using my router, instead of using a belt sander? I was planning on using a belt sander with 100 grit paper to get everything smooth, but I'm open to suggestions for a better way.
blue sky is offline  
post #31 of 57 Old 01-18-2012, 04:11 PM
I hate tools
 
cocheseuga's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Kennesaw, GA
Posts: 578
View cocheseuga's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by blue sky View Post
What do you mean by "flatten the top" with a router? (I have a router but haven't used it much). Are you saying that there's an attachment I can use to sand the top using my router, instead of using a belt sander? I was planning on using a belt sander with 100 grit paper to get everything smooth, but I'm open to suggestions for a better way.
It's easier to show a picture for explanation.

http://lumberjocks.com/projects/23386

The router sled (or skiis, your choice) rides on known flat rails and the depth of cut remains the same on the router to achieve a dead flat surface.

It takes awhile, but it's a known solution and not too expensive assuming you own a router.
cocheseuga is offline  
post #32 of 57 Old 01-18-2012, 05:32 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: So Cal
Posts: 36
View blue sky's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by cocheseuga View Post
It's easier to show a picture for explanation.

http://lumberjocks.com/projects/23386

The router sled (or skiis, your choice) rides on known flat rails and the depth of cut remains the same on the router to achieve a dead flat surface.

It takes awhile, but it's a known solution and not too expensive assuming you own a router.
I've never tried this method before. What kind of bit do I use? And with the sled in place, do I just sink the bit to whatever depth I need and trim the entire top? If I'm picturing this right, this will take quite a while to level this top.
blue sky is offline  
post #33 of 57 Old 01-18-2012, 07:31 PM
I run with chisels.
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: AZ
Posts: 913
View joesbucketorust's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by blue sky View Post
What do you mean by "flatten the top" with a router?
They all beat me to the answer! I just used a regular 3/4" straight bit. My benchtop is about 7' x 2.5" and I screwed the rails to each side. The entire top took less than a half hour and a lot of that was making sure the rails were parallel to each other. I then found the lowest spot on my bench and set the router bit depth so it just barely touched that spot, moved the sled to one end, turned it on and started moving. If you're not removing half an inch at a time and you've got a decent router, you can do it one handed with no pressure and it just flies - just cover the entire bench from one end to the other and when you're done it's flat.

Insert witty signature line here.
joesbucketorust is offline  
post #34 of 57 Old 01-18-2012, 08:07 PM
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 9
View Rich M.'s Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dominick View Post
Gorilla wood glue works good for me. It has a good initial tack, and drys clear. You might want to double check to make sure that the glue joint is square 90 deg before glue up. Yes clamps will be fine, no need for spline.
JMO
Gorilla glue set much faster than Tight-bond. You will need the extra working time for that glue up.
Rich M. is offline  
post #35 of 57 Old 01-23-2012, 04:50 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: So Cal
Posts: 36
View blue sky's Photo Album My Photos
So I ripped the 2x8s into 2x4s last weekend and have started gluing those boards together two at a time. Once those are ready, I'll put the pairs in clamps for final glue, then I'll need to trim the ends...and this leads to my next question. Since this bench top is 30" x 60", I'll need to build a crosscut sled to make an accurate 90 degree cut. Does anyone have any plans or 2 cents for an easy to build sled to cut a piece this size? If it helps, my table saw is a Ridgid R4510. Thanks.
blue sky is offline  
post #36 of 57 Old 01-23-2012, 06:49 PM
Trytore Member
 
Shop Dad's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Central New Jersey
Posts: 2,764
View Shop Dad's Photo Album My Photos
I wouldn't try to do that with a table saw. A circular saw with straightedge should do the trick.
Shop Dad is offline  
post #37 of 57 Old 01-23-2012, 07:01 PM
where's my table saw?
 
woodnthings's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: SE, Michigan
Posts: 27,623
View woodnthings's Photo Album My Photos
Yup

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shop Dad View Post
I wouldn't try to do that with a table saw. A circular saw with straightedge should do the trick.
My rule is when the piece is larger and heavier than the table saw, use a circular saw. Things can go ugly when the saw tips over while running. Sometimes I tip over and I'm not even running, just sitting in my chair.....

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
woodnthings is offline  
post #38 of 57 Old 01-24-2012, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: So Cal
Posts: 36
View blue sky's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shop Dad View Post
I wouldn't try to do that with a table saw. A circular saw with straightedge should do the trick.
My bench is 3" thick and the circular saws I've looked up have a max depth cut of 2 1/2". So the only way to use a circular saw would be to make one cut, then flip over the piece, hope that I line up the straightedge exactly right, then make the second cut. Is this doable...yes. But I was hoping for a more foolproof way to get a clean edge. Any advice?
blue sky is offline  
post #39 of 57 Old 01-24-2012, 12:43 PM
where's my table saw?
 
woodnthings's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: SE, Michigan
Posts: 27,623
View woodnthings's Photo Album My Photos
You can do it that way or...

You're not gonna make a through cut in a 3" piece in one pass anyway. It should take 2 or even 3 shallow passes. The sawdust has no place to exit and will build up in the kerf as you go, so take it easy, just bear hard against the guide. Then you can take a hand saw and complete the cut. Support the cut off so it won't splinter, tape the back side first since the saw will be pushing through. bill

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
woodnthings is offline  
post #40 of 57 Old 01-24-2012, 02:09 PM
Trytore Member
 
Shop Dad's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Central New Jersey
Posts: 2,764
View Shop Dad's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by blue sky View Post
My bench is 3" thick and the circular saws I've looked up have a max depth cut of 2 1/2". So the only way to use a circular saw would be to make one cut, then flip over the piece, hope that I line up the straightedge exactly right, then make the second cut. Is this doable...yes. But I was hoping for a more foolproof way to get a clean edge. Any advice?
Yes, that's what I'd do. Cut one side to 2" then flip it and cut the other side. Hopefully your glue-up left the board ends a reasonable distance from each other so you shouldn't have to cut off very much. Just clean up the edge. You should be able to get close enough that any evidence can be erased with a sander. I've also seen this done with a router in a build from one of the WW mags.
Shop Dad is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
I am planning on building this workbench Redneck chan Design & Plans 46 08-23-2017 10:26 AM
Guidance on building a workbench. Too many considerations. m2244 General Woodworking Discussion 5 12-27-2011 11:51 AM
Laminated 2x4s better than 4x4s for bench legs? mikeintexas Tips, Tricks, & Homemade Jigs 21 12-04-2011 10:29 PM
workbench plans that don't require a workbench? Abuela Design & Plans 17 06-12-2010 01:07 AM
Building a new workbench - questions... scottsh General Woodworking Discussion 6 01-15-2010 06:45 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome