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post #1 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 01:04 PM Thread Starter
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Rolling Workbench

Hey everyone. Brand new here and I wanted to get some thoughts on a bench i'm planning on throwing together. I plan on using 2x4's for the frame and 1/2 or 3/4 plywood for the shelving/wall panels. It is going to house a bench saw and a router, and then possible have a spot on the end to place and remove a drill press/band saw. The whole thing will be on locking casters.

I'll attach a drawing of it. Please don't mind the drawing, I know it's terrible but it's about the best I can do. Please let me know what you think! I'm also planning on doing something about a custom fence for the bench saw/router table.

Thanks!
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post #2 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 01:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ElRowlando View Post
Hey everyone. Brand new here and I wanted to get some thoughts on a bench i'm planning on throwing together. I plan on using 2x4's for the frame and 1/2 or 3/4 plywood for the shelving/wall panels. It is going to house a bench saw and a router, and then possible have a spot on the end to place and remove a drill press/band saw. The whole thing will be on locking casters.

I'll attach a drawing of it. Please don't mind the drawing, I know it's terrible but it's about the best I can do. Please let me know what you think! I'm also planning on doing something about a custom fence for the bench saw/router table.

Thanks!
Looks very similar to one I just built except I opted for a table top and one shelf at the bottom as opposed to shelving.

What kind of things do you plan to store on the shelves? I would be concerned for weight given a woodshop style application.
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post #3 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 01:18 PM Thread Starter
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I don't really have any plans for what I would store on it. I didn't know how else to set it up so I just thought I would put shelves. Maybe store my circular saw and various hand tools or something. I don't really know what you mean by a table top and one shelf. Thanks for the reply!
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post #4 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 01:22 PM Thread Starter
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I suppose maybe instead of shelving I could build a nice stand for the bench saw portion and just leave the other half open and store the band saw and drill press when not in use. Then I could maybe use 2x4s to reinforce the table top along the middle? I'm really new to woodworking by the way, if you couldn't tell :)
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post #5 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 01:23 PM
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Here's a link to how mine turned out - note that I have the table top and then one shelf at the bottom. Depending on the height of the table you may not get a lot of value out of multiple shelves because they'll end up being pretty small. My table is set to 35" tall which I believe is a good working height - that leaves very little in the way of usable space in between that and the floor.

http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f9/workbench-59929/
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post #6 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 02:42 PM
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Dimensions are a fairly personal decision, but I would find a bench 42" high and 36" deep to be awkward. I think my current bench is about 3' high, and it's just about right. Likewise, a 36" bench is hard to lean across, and you probably won't mostly need the depth. It looks like this won't sit against a wall, so at least you don't have to worry about reaching things hanging on the far side, but it still may be uncomfortably large when something rolls away from you.

That said, it mostly looks pretty good to me. I'd go with 3/4" ply for the shelving if you're going to do that, but I might also suggest just boxing in the spaces and not putting shelves in until you know what you need.

My only other concern is support for the top frame. It looks like you're planning on counting on screws or bolts to support the frame, and I'd be nervous about that. I'd recommend adding extra 2x4 in the corners, screwed to the existing verticals and touching both the top and bottom frames, to provide positive support for the top. I did a bench about 10' long that way, and it was incredibly solid.

For the top, I'd either go with 2x material (ideally 2x12, cut apart to provide lots of ~4-5" wide pieces with the rings running vertically top to bottom across the 1.75" dimension) or three or more layers of 3/4" plywood. My current bench uses three layers glued together, and a fourth captured by edging to keep it from sliding off that I can replace when it gets too battered. It's flat, it's solid, and it's heavy.
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post #7 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 07:23 PM
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Originally Posted by amckenzie4 View Post
Dimensions are a fairly personal decision, but I would find a bench 42" high and 36" deep to be awkward. I think my current bench is about 3' high, and it's just about right. Likewise, a 36" bench is hard to lean across, and you probably won't mostly need the depth. It looks like this won't sit against a wall, so at least you don't have to worry about reaching things hanging on the far side, but it still may be uncomfortably large when something rolls away from you.

That said, it mostly looks pretty good to me. I'd go with 3/4" ply for the shelving if you're going to do that, but I might also suggest just boxing in the spaces and not putting shelves in until you know what you need.

My only other concern is support for the top frame. It looks like you're planning on counting on screws or bolts to support the frame, and I'd be nervous about that. I'd recommend adding extra 2x4 in the corners, screwed to the existing verticals and touching both the top and bottom frames, to provide positive support for the top. I did a bench about 10' long that way, and it was incredibly solid.

For the top, I'd either go with 2x material (ideally 2x12, cut apart to provide lots of ~4-5" wide pieces with the rings running vertically top to bottom across the 1.75" dimension) or three or more layers of 3/4" plywood. My current bench uses three layers glued together, and a fourth captured by edging to keep it from sliding off that I can replace when it gets too battered. It's flat, it's solid, and it's heavy.
I just replaced 42" tall tables and yeah - that is really high and frankly not workable for most things I wanted to use the tables for. I'm tall (6 foot) and even I found that height uncomfortable.
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post #8 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 08:09 PM
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My workbench I use is about 42" tall an 24" deep. I find it great but I'm 6'2" so that may be why. I mostly use It for carving though. It would depend on what you find most comfortable.
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post #9 of 10 Old 02-20-2014, 08:22 PM
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I would do a couple of things...or actually, I did a couple of things that you might want to consider.
Double up the outside edge about 2 inches wide so you will have a sturdy area to clamp to. Just let your table overhang all the way around where possible.

Add some slots (1 1/4" wide) so you can slip in f style clamps to clamp stuff out in the middle of the table.
Add some dog holes sorta like the Festool type bench.

Google Ron Paulk and check out his work bench, miter saw stand and cut off jig for sheet goods.

Good luck. My workbench is a multiuse table because it is the only place I have to work. I have two Kreg tracks mounted for clamping. 7/8 inch dog holes. They don't work too well because my table is a 2 inch thick solid core door covered with Formica.

However, my mobile workstation works great.

Here are a couple of pics. Hope you see something you like.
Good luck. Post some pics when you get it built.
Mike
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post #10 of 10 Old 03-02-2014, 12:50 AM
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Why frame it with 2 x 4s if you're using 3/4" plywood to essentially build a cabinet box? With all of the partitions you show, it should be very structurally strong. Just build a cabinet box and if you really need a heavy duty top, use the lumber there. The lumber becomes important if you span far with the top, but your plan doesn't span far. You could add some hardwood stiffeners between partitions and be very stout.
I have several built this way, - some with only a 3/4" plywood top, a couple with solid doors on top, and one with maple butcher block style bench top. For most uses, the single layer of ply with some stiffeners according to the span is sufficient.
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