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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I built my first woodworking bench back in 2016. Pretty much a hybrid split top Roubo made from DF, left over cedar 4x4s, a couple of scraps of walnut and some pallet wood for the lower shelf. It has an Eclipse quick release face vise (Record clone) and a shipwright wedge wagon vise. Total cost at the time was 48 bucks for the lumber. Don't recall the cost of the vise. It's served the purpose pretty well, but it's a bit on the light side for hand tool work. Building it was my first attempt at a few things - a large glue-up and first dovetails cut. However I think it's time to build something heavier and substantial with a bit more craft. I've been debating on the style, but have settled on a Shaker bench using the Benchcrafted design and hardware. Not sure why or what it is about the style, though it does provide some of the aspects I would like such as storage and a closed base that reaches the floor so the small screws and bits don't get claimed by the dark recesses under the bench.

My present bench in my old shop in Brooklyn. *It has battle scars after the many battles it faced. This was just after completion ;)

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Some of my stash for the project - sugar maple - old stash on the right and new kiln dried boards for the top on the left. I'll be adding some other woods as well for various components of the bench - some walnut for a dog strip and QS sycamore for the vise chop (maybe) :)

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The Benchrafted bench design.

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The bench I I'll be closely mimicking. I wonder if this is a WWT member bench? I have some questions if it is lol Really pretty bench by the way!

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Well it's a start. The Benchcrafted design calls for the inside structure of the bench to be built from 3/4" multi-ply. I anticipated using BB but Rockler only had 1/2" on hand. So it was off to Lowes for some maple ply which is basically junk, but it will serve the purpose. Voids and pithy wood in the core. Not sure why we have to get this stuff foisted on us. But it will be hidden behind panels of hard maple when the bench is complete. This is all I could achieve after the running around for materials.

The Benchcrafed prints are pretty thorough with helpful detailed drawings. However, I guess the drawings were based off of the original build with some odd dimensions that seemed unnecessary for something of this nature where the rest of the components will be made to fit what is built. They give dimensions of components with 1/16" increments to final cut, making calculations for other simple components unnecessarily tedious. Just make them whole numbers or numbers easily divided, which is what I did. It doesn't change the design.

The carcass for the cabinet, they suggest glue and screws for assembly with no dados. I chose to make shalow dados for the center panels simply for locating them easily. The bottom of the cabinet rests on cleats the same height as the kick area. So dados for that were unnecessary.

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Junk hardwood plywood.

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
A little progress today. Since I'm not building the bench exactly as per the BC plans, I had to make some guestimates and transpose my dimensions to the BC plan. In many ways their plans are very detailed and in some ways very poor in terms of dimension information. In some instances the provided dimension is not pertinent or even real - a dimension for a component where some of that component is hidden but the dimension line is not projected to the terminus of that component, but to the component in front of it in the elevation drawing. This may be a function of CAD and its operator. I basically had to leaf back and forth between the section drawings and the elevation drawings to decipher what was what.

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Next up was breaking down the 10 footers into manageable pieces for milling. No slogging around 10 foot 5/4 maple boards for me. So it was time to make a cut list and then begin cutting to rough.

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Then it was time to take this guy to the park for a walk or he pouts for the rest of the evening lol

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Got home, had some lunch and then ran the boards thru the Minimax.

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Later, I may rip these to width and get ready to start building the Shaker panels that will clad the sides of the bench.
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