Workbench plan refinements - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 Old 03-31-2015, 04:17 AM Thread Starter
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Workbench plan refinements

So ive pretty well decided my next project will be a nice, solid wood workbench, now that i have room for it. Ive got a few things narrowed down so far, but id like to see what other people think, preferably who have built a bench like it before.

There are a few things ive fairly solidly decided on. The raw wood is going to be construction grade SPF lumber, instead of the more traditional hard maple, to keep costs way down. The plans dont show it yet, but im going to go with a face vise and a wagon/tail sort of vice, along with a row of dog holes.

There are a few things ive yet to decide on. The base i plan on M&T joining, but ive hit a little snag on attaching the top. I bounced back and forth between bolting the top to the base somehow or a through tenon. At the moment im leaning to through tenon, for rigidity, but as the same time i cant decide if i want to wedge and glue it or think up a way to make the top a little more removable. The reason for that is so if later down the line i have a little more money and decided to make a hardwood top, i could reuse the base.

Any input on the attacked plans is much appreciated. Mostly, im wondering what other people wouldve done different or included on their benches so i dont make the same mistake. Theres a few random things ive been kicking around, like running t-track along the length for more clamping options, but i cant decide on practicality
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post #2 of 6 Old 03-31-2015, 07:01 AM
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If you are going to use construction grade lumber I would recommend you use yellow pine for the top. It would be harder than SPF. I can't get the sketchup image. As far as mounting the top you might run a dado in the skirt and make wooden blocks with a rabbet on them to take the place of table top clips like you would use on a table top.

As far as the design I would put as many drawers in the bench as you can.
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post #3 of 6 Old 03-31-2015, 04:47 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post

As far as the design I would put as many drawers in the bench as you can.
I considered that, but honestly I'm not too fond of drawers. Too many things to break, too many places for things to get lost.

I did also consider SYP, but its hard to get around here. The lumber yard nearest to me only stocks radiata pine instead of southern yellow, and even that's $4.80bf. If I were wanting to pay that much, I'd bite the bullet and go with maple or hickory

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post #4 of 6 Old 04-03-2015, 08:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post

As far as the design I would put as many drawers in the bench as you can.
+1. I agree totally to the drawers. A good use of space. Tools at your bench where you need them.
I would also put the whole thing on locking rollers. It will be really heavy.
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post #5 of 6 Old 04-03-2015, 11:55 PM
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A workbench is a very personal item and the more you use it, the more personal it will become. That's why some will advise you to put in as many drawers as possible. They did and they use them all the time. I'm thinking of adding a couple but so far my open bins have served me well to store my jigs and bench support items.

I think it's a great idea to ask the forum what has worked for us but realize your asking me about my workshop baby. I really like my workbench and there is nothing bad about it - it works well for me. As a matter of fact, I want to share it with you for reasons mentioned in you open. In order, you mentioned cost and end vise. I have an end vise system that works very well and is low cost compared to the expensive dual crank systems out there. I use pipe clamps!

The other point is you questioned "practicality" of t-tracks on a workbench surface. I use t-tracks on my bench with no dog holes... and my bench can do everything those very expensive fancy European benches can do plus more. You've probably seen my post in the past, but since you question in general the "practicality" of t-tracks on a workbench - here is my bench

http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f2/ve...-unique-40361/

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post #6 of 6 Old 04-04-2015, 02:52 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BernieL View Post
A workbench is a very personal item and the more you use it, the more personal it will become. That's why some will advise you to put in as many drawers as possible. They did and they use them all the time. I'm thinking of adding a couple but so far my open bins have served me well to store my jigs and bench support items.

I think it's a great idea to ask the forum what has worked for us but realize your asking me about my workshop baby. I really like my workbench and there is nothing bad about it - it works well for me. As a matter of fact, I want to share it with you for reasons mentioned in you open. In order, you mentioned cost and end vise. I have an end vise system that works very well and is low cost compared to the expensive dual crank systems out there. I use pipe clamps!

The other point is you questioned "practicality" of t-tracks on a workbench surface. I use t-tracks on my bench with no dog holes... and my bench can do everything those very expensive fancy European benches can do plus more. You've probably seen my post in the past, but since you question in general the "practicality" of t-tracks on a workbench - here is my bench

http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f2/ve...-unique-40361/
I agree on all points, and figured that I'd get a lot of conflicting opinions. I'm okay with that, its what I wanted actually. I like hearing what everybody thinks is a good idea, because it gives me some of my own. Drawers, for example, are a fantastic idea, just not for me. I'd spend far too much time making them and even more time trying to dig tools out, so it just isnt feasible.

I'm still toying around the idea of t-tracks. On one hand, I know a lot of people use them in work benches with fantastic results, but on the other I question how much use I'd get from them, especially with the dual vise setup.

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