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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Took a bit to get this done on my own, but it's now ready for use. It's a lefty bench. The slab is 6' long 5 1/2" thick red oak. Legs are red oak as well. Benchcrafted hardware and some beefy 1" Crucible holdfasts. Just some boiled linseed oil finish, a little leather to line the vise chop, a toothed planing stop, and I'm all out of excuses to not make something. Got plenty of help from the Chris Schwarz workbench book and a video that he and Will Myers put together. Thanks for looking!


Dan
 

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Dan...I've made many of these of over the years...!!!...I can't begin to share with you what an outstanding job you have done with this bench...!!!...It is speaks to our craft and art of it in a single piece...both utilitarianly functional and aesthetically beautiful at the same time...Simply outstanding!!! :grin:

If I may ask...(as a greed woodworker myself)...where did you get the slab for the top and how long (*if you know?) was it from tree to bench?

Did you draw bore the joinery or clamp and drill the trunnel holes?

What is your next adventure in traditional woodworking going to be?

Thanks in advance and again...great job!!!

j
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks very much for the kind words, Jay! I got the slab from a guy here in North Carolina named Leslie Caudle ([email protected]). He sells roubo 'kits' of varying lengths (mine started just over 8' before I cut it down). Shipping is usually prohibitive for those out of state, but I'm lucky enough to be only a couple hours away. The slab had been drying for about a year and a half and it was/is plenty moist in the interior. I oriented the slab heart side up so that further movement would curl the slab downward onto the legs. I expect I'll be flattening it every 6-8 months or so for the first couple years.



I used draw bore joinery for the stretchers. I didn't have to get it perfect because thankfully all the strength is in the mortise and tenons of the leg and top, as you know.



Next up is likely a tool cabinet, or perhaps a shave horse if I can settle on a design.


Thanks again!


Dan
 

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Very nice! Oak, Benchcrafted hardware, Crucible holdfasts...you definitely didn't go cheap! Should last a couple of lifetimes!

Just an observation - are you a lefty or is it just more comfortable to have the leg vise on the opposite end? I'm also a lefty, but I kept my vise in the traditional location because it felt weird when relocated.
 

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...Thanks very much for the kind words, Jay! I got the slab from a guy here in North Carolina named Leslie Caudle ([email protected]).
Hi Dan,

Thanks a lot for the link...LOL :vs_laugh:

It's a small world we work in when doing this kind of wood craft...LOL...:vs_laugh:

I actually have given Lesly's info out to folks, as I have a dear friend in Asheville who is an Arborist (Smart Feller Tree Service) who is also a timber framer and traditional woodworker himself, lots of contacts there in NC in general from my days in the Marines!

...I oriented the slab heart side up so that further movement would curl the slab downward onto the legs.
Dan, this is an academic question you could help me with...If you don't mind. Grain orientation within historic application and cultural context is a very esoteric subject I am rather interested in, and always take not of.

Was this selection of yours to orient the cant (aka slab) pith side up based on an "I think" perspective, or was it taken based on something you read or advise you received?

Thanks in advance for sharing!

... The slab had been drying for about a year and a half and it was/is plenty moist in the interior. I expect I'll be flattening it every 6-8 months or so for the first couple years.
What method(s) will you employ to resurface the Cant...power, hand or a combination of tools? What is this choice based on and why?

...I used draw bore joinery for the stretchers. I didn't have to get it perfect because thankfully all the strength is in the mortise and tenons of the leg and top, as you know...
And...!!!...I might add, you did an incredible job of it...I can not imagine that you hadn't made many of these before with that type of fit...!!!

If you have close-ups of the joinery or shoots during the fitting I would love to see them.

...Next up is likely a tool cabinet, or perhaps a shave horse if I can settle on a design.
Cabinets are a blast...for sure, but I simply can not get enough of Shaving Horse!!!! :vs_OMG::vs_laugh::grin:

Do you have a design yet?

Will this too be a traditional build?

Will you use Lesley again for the wood source, or get your own bolt (aka log section) this time to work from scratch, and of what species?

Have you considered trying your hand at riving out your stock from a rough bolt?

Again thanks for posting your project here!:laugh2:

j
 

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WOW BEAUTIFUL !!!!!

I'm with Jay on all the curiosity questions, please detail them....

Shaving horse....I have interest in that build myself (as if I have extra time :vs_laugh::vs_laugh::wink:) . IF you don't have a plan maybe Jay can help us both with details!!!!

Your take on the pithe interests me also....I normally see a crown towards the closer side BUT also the crack/relief of natural shinkage. The true deep readings and views I've heard of traditional work/craftsman is place/orientate it in the direction it would stand or fallen.

ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL !!!!! I LOVE the traditional joinery and look !!!!
 
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Discussion Starter #11
Very nice! Oak, Benchcrafted hardware, Crucible holdfasts...you definitely didn't go cheap! Should last a couple of lifetimes!

Just an observation - are you a lefty or is it just more comfortable to have the leg vise on the opposite end? I'm also a lefty, but I kept my vise in the traditional location because it felt weird when relocated.

I am a lefty and so put the new vise on the right side. Probably more so I could have it on the same side as the planing stop (which for a lefty does need to be on the right side. It'll take getting used to and I'll have to change a few habits, but if every righty does it the opposite way, there must be something to it!


Thanks,

Dan
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hey Jay,

In answer to your questions...


Orienting the slab heart side up:
This was was 'historical' advice from A.J. Roubo himself. It also was reiterated in the Lost Art Press video. It also allowed some fun oak figure to be present on the top.


Flattening the top:
I surfaced the top mostly with hand tools as I was lucky to not have much warping. I did take an initial pass with a powered hand planer though, as one end was about 1/4" thicker than the other. Honestly, I'm not sure how much time it saved. I found a cambered iron in a Stanley #5 plane took plenty of wood out with each pass.



More photos of joinery:
I did put all my photos up on instagram if you're interested. @crowworkswood should get you there.


Shave horse build:

1. "Traditional"? Not sure. I'll be using dimensional lumber though. I'm using some plans out there by Mark Hicks at Plate11.com. I've been spending a lot of time on making work shop benches and tools so I allowed myself this 'shortcut' so I can get back to making something ASAP.

2. I'll try to use what wood I have lying around or some SYP from the lumberyard.

3. I'd love to rive some wood, especially once I get the shavehorse setup to work it after it's riven. One step at a time, though. :)


Thanks!
Dan
 

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I really like the Chris Schwarsz book and have been fantasizing over a Ruobo bench for a few years now.

The masterpiece you put together might be the shove I need to get going on my own. How much does the slab weigh?
 

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I've been there gj13us! I bought the first edition of Schwarz' book, then sold it, then bought the second edition, then was paid in Benchcrafted hardware by a client, then bought the Lost Art Press workbench video, watched it a few times, then finally got off my butt to make it. Probably 5 years from when I first thought I'd like to make one of those things.



I'm not sure how heavy the whole thing is, but it's gotta be north of 300lbs. My old MDF bench was so wobbly and frustrating, the stoutness of this design is one of it's greatest strengths. You will need some friends to help move it a couple times, though! Good luck.
 

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This joint .... how?

A partial split dovetail thru tenon ...... ?




I can envision the dovetail being cut and chiseled out the full depth, but the adjoining mortise seems like it may have difficult to keep straight and get the waste removed. How did you do it and is there an easier way now that you have finished it?


Very impressive craftsmanship. :vs_cool:

I'd rather not take 5 years to build one .... just sayin'. :wink:
 
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