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Finally building a decent woodworking bench

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  • Finally building a decent woodworking bench

    For years I've been grumbling about the quality of the workbench I use. I finally ordered the vices and have started glueing up the bench top. The overall dimensions with be 30" wide and 10' long. The first 15" will be 4" thick and the back 15" will be 3" thick. There will be a tail vice and a leg vice. I hope to have it built by mid January.
    If you bat 1000 you're playing in the minor leagues.

    Warren Buffet

  • #2
    Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

    Looking forward to your bench build Keith. Take a bunch of progress pics for us guys too lazy to build a proper one for ourselves!
    Chuck Kiser
    Knollwood Construction Company
    Palos Park, IL 60464

    Knollwood Construction
    Kitchen Remodeling Chicago
    Bathroom Remodeling Chicago
    Building Repairs Chicago

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    • #3
      Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

      Keith, are you using a plan from a specific source or your own design?

      I am using a bench I bought at a lumberyard auction 25 years ago...4"x6" fir frame with 5/4 fir flooring for a top. The nice part is it's 4'x10'. I've always wanted to put one of my Emmert patternmaker's vises on it but I didn't want to cut into that nice, stout frame on the bench.

      About a dozen years ago I retrieved several 10"x12" American Beech girders from a demo. site and had a couple of them resawn into material for a bench but it still sits on the lumber rack. I will get to it one of these days. Perhaps your effort will be the motivation. Thanks.
      Last edited by calvert; 11-21-2013, 05:53 PM.
      "ALS IK KAN" - Stickley

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      • #4
        Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

        The bench will be very similar to the shaker bench from the company I got the vices from http://benchcrafted.com/shaker.html. The only real difference will be all drawers instead of a couple of door openings. I like to have things on racks behind the bench within reach which is why I opted for a 30" wide bench.

        The wood in the glue-up on the stands is wood I bought over 10 years ago to build a bench. I've got less than 10 years before I retire and I'm starting to contemplate how I'm going to go from a 5000 sq ft shop to a garage. The bench will likely be the main appliance at that time.
        If you bat 1000 you're playing in the minor leagues.

        Warren Buffet

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        • #5
          Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

          Really looking forward to your progress.

          What species are you using?
          www.jalvisllc.com

          www.facebook.com/JAlvisllc

          www.Instagram.com/JAlvisllc

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          • #6
            Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

            I am excited to see your progress too! After reading the <a title="Delta 1800-900 reviews" href="http://drillpresstech.com/delta-18-900l-drill-press-boss
            " target="_blank">Delta 1800-900 reviews</a> I broke down and bought one. My work bench is still an old one that does the job.

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            • #7
              Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

              Most of the top is now glued up. The first 10" is 4 1/4" thick, the next 12" is 2 2/3" and the back 12" or so will be 1". It is all quarter or rift sawn hard maple. The overall length has changed to around 12'. It's going to be massive and massively heavy.eddaccf61e44f9fe64a64e72178c22d3.jpg4cef8211a622fb9a0acbaff266d6c641.jpg
              If you bat 1000 you're playing in the minor leagues.

              Warren Buffet

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              • #8
                Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

                Today I finished the top and tomorrow it goes through the widebelt to flatten it. Next the tail vice gets installed. After the vice is mounted the doghole strip and face strip are glued on.

                There will have to be some changes to the design of the cabinets underneath. After searching for holdfasts I discovered that I will have to have them made. Fortunately Christopher Schwarz has done the heavy lifting and all I have to do is order them. Here is a link to the article http://www.popularwoodworking.com/wo...not-a-holdfast.

                I contacted Peter Ross and he sent an email of the holdfasts, but it looks like there will be a bit of a wait..... I'll attach the email In case others are searching for a quality holdfast.

                Keith,
                here are a couple of images. The "half" size model fits a 1" hole and is priced at $170 ea.(plus shipping). The full size fits a 1.5 " hole and is priced at $400 ea. As I mentioned, the full size model is dependent on finding wrought iron large enough to make the piece. It's not readily available so may take some luck to find. I'm looking, and can keep you posted.
                Thanks for the phone call,
                Peter


                Peter M. Ross
                Blacksmith & Whitesmith
                2232 White Smith Rd.
                Siler City, NC 27344
                919-663-3309
                If you bat 1000 you're playing in the minor leagues.

                Warren Buffet

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                • #9
                  Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

                  Keith,
                  What happened to those vacuum clamps you showed us some time ago.
                  Those will work great on your new bench if they have suction on top and bottom, which I think they have.
                  In case you want to sell it I may be interested.
                  Al

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                  • #10
                    Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

                    Al,

                    What I'm building is a joiners bench which is much different than a finish carpenters bench. The two are not interchangeable. The joiners bench, as the name indicates, is intended for hand-tool joinery work and the carpenters bench is more of an assembly table and track-saw cutting station.

                    I don't intend to sell the vacuum pods but you can make your own very easily and cheaply. In one of my Youtube vids it shows the parts to make one. If you have any questions about making your own please let me know.

                    Keith
                    If you bat 1000 you're playing in the minor leagues.

                    Warren Buffet

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                    • #11
                      Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

                      Keith,
                      I was familiar with the type of clamping you use but the use of vacuum to keep a jig in place was new to me or at least it never occurred to me. It's a great idea, thanks for showing it.
                      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YUJVL-k1RH8

                      The vacuum clamps you use on the other video are sold by this company
                      http://www.veneersupplies.com/produc...ping-Jigs.html
                      Al
                      Last edited by Albert C; 01-03-2014, 08:21 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

                        Keith, looks like a heck of a bench. Keep us in the loop.
                        ~Kent~

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                        • #13
                          Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

                          Assembled the rough carcass today and started the layout for the leg vise.
                          If you bat 1000 you're playing in the minor leagues.

                          Warren Buffet

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                          • #14
                            Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

                            Here is a pic of the bench dogs and the mortises for the dogs.
                            If you bat 1000 you're playing in the minor leagues.

                            Warren Buffet

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                            • #15
                              Re: Finally building a decent woodworking bench

                              Keith, starting to look too nice to ever work on!!!
                              "ALS IK KAN" - Stickley

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