New Workbench part 2

I didn’t get much time to work on it, but I did tack the legs of the new workbench on test out the height, and start working on the top.  The legs are nice and solid, and add a nice character to my recycled materials “frankenbench”.  When all is said and done it will probably have 3-4 different sources for the wood used in the bench including the bedframe, an old Southern Yellow Pine bunk bed a friend carted up here from the south, and left over build materials from my neighbor.

I wish Yellow Pine was easier to get up here, it’s a great wood and the white pine we get around these parts doesn’t hold a candle to the Southern Yellow Pine that Christopher Schwarz is always advocating for workbench construction.  At first I discounted this, I mean, pine is pine right?  Then I acquired this bunkbed frame, and realized what it was.  I get it now, and that makes me all the more sad. Oh well, we must persevere.

Anyway, here is some shots of the legs being tacked on, and the bench standing up.  I used a couple drywall screws to tack to the cross bracing, and it’s remarkably solid for what it is.  I also spent a little time planing the top to get it a bit more flat, and discovered some terrible grain direction with awesome tear-out.  Sigh.  I knew it wasn’t going to be great, but it is annoying.

Tacking the legs on.

Testing for height and planing the top

Steps left to do:

  • add stretchers to the leg, and shelf underneath
  • carriage bolts for the legs (to make it able to break down)
  • reinforce the top with addition thickness (for dog holds and weight)
  • attach twin screw vise to the front (using screws from “book press”)
  • attach quick release vise to end
  • map out dog hole placement (line up with end vise)
  • drill dog holes for hold fasts on the top and sides
  • put some kind of finish on the top

But, I do like the top height, it’s low (31″) but I’m short, and it feels good with the wood jack plane at least.  I might need to add some risers to the legs if it’s too short for metal bodied planes, but I’m going to go with this height to see if I like it or not.

Hopefully some day soon I will be able to MAKE something on my bench.  Christmas time is coming, and I need to start planning out the family gifts.


* Man, I need to do something about the lighting down there.  Those pictures look TERRIBLE!

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