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Discussion Starter #1
I have read debates on this topic and primarily it sounds like if you are using hand tools 3" or greater is preferred. I am in the process of building my bench out of recycled ash used as a farm wagon beams. In milling the stock for the top getting all the twist and split wood out I will end up with 2 5/8 top before glue up. Assuming I will only lose another 1/8 for final flattening (if my glue up goes as well as I hope!)

My question on this topic is will 2 1/2" really be enough for hand tool use? The base is ash as well with 3 3/4 legs and will be 7 or 7 1/2' long.
 

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Just remember a heavy top doesn't mean much if the base is weak. I used a 3/4 top for many years and recently acquired a 8/4 hickory top which sounds better but the foundation is key to me:yes:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the feedback. I really was hoping to get 3" (or more) out of it but I had a lot of twist and cracks that had to be addressed when doing the originally milling.

At this point what do I have to lose as the lumber only cost me $50 😜 I love finding deals and recycling lumber.
 

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Glue your top upside down on wax paper... gluing upside down will ensure you the truest flat surface with the least amount of planing to get your perfect flat top. The wax paper will prevent your top bonding to the temp workbench.
 

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The top of my primary bench is several 2x6 laid flat. Plenty of strength and bounce free surface for pounding.

George
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I got a Veritas double screw vise for the face vise. I will be glueing an additional piece on the bottom of the bench for the the faceplate. I got a generic single screw vise that I am going to use as the tail vise. I am making my version of Robert Lang's 21st Century workbench.
 

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Wood Snob
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Lang's got a nice bench but I'm not sure I'd like the tool tray in the middle of the bench. I have a tool tray on the back side and couldn't do without it for about a hundred reasons.

Glad to see guys still building woodworking benches.

Al ImageUploadedByWood Working Talk1441926873.587450.jpg

Al
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The tool trays in the middle are removable and can actually be flipped upside down make it a flat top. I like the idea for a number of different reasons or at least in theory at least.
 

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Wood Snob
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The tool trays in the middle are removable and can actually be flipped upside down make it a flat top. I like the idea for a number of different reasons or at least in theory at least.

I'm betting you put a few things in it and get tired of taking them out to rotate. Then you either stop using the tray or quit rotating. At any rate, it's a great way to do woodworking. So many sell out when it comes to the work bench and never know how much better the work gets done and what a joy it is to have. It's my number one tool and they would have to "pry it from my cold dead hand".

Get crackin and start a thread on your build and be an inspiration to us all.

Al
 

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Al Thayer,
In your bench pic the left end appears to have a foot that is suspended. Is it just. My old eyes or is something else going on?
Thanks for your info. :)
 

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DRTYBYRD
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Al Thayer,
In your bench pic the left end appears to have a foot that is suspended. Is it just. My old eyes or is something else going on?
Thanks for your info. :)
LOL..I saw the same thing. I think you are seeing a shadow from the vice. The floor is playing tricks on us.
 

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I'm in the process of planning my new workbench, and was wondering if the top could be too thick? My current plan is to use a bunch of 2x4s, so it would end up being roughly 3.5 inches thick.
 

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I'm in the process of planning my new workbench, and was wondering if the top could be too thick? My current plan is to use a bunch of 2x4s, so it would end up being roughly 3.5 inches thick.
I would go with the 2x4 with a 1.5" thickness... Hold-Down clamps should work fine... IMHO, would be thick enough, etc.

Like Fine Woodworking's New Fangled Workbench...
 

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My Roubo is 4" thick, with 5" square legs. It's really good at staying put. Not so handy if you need to move it often.

Made from box store 2x12 SYP and a half gallon of Titebond II Extend:
 

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