Workbench

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  • #20524
    Jay
    Participant

    My workbench project is finally under way. It’s based on Paul’s design on YouTube, but due to space restrictions in my shop area, it’s going to be smaller. I’m planning on a 50×14 front bench section with a 6in well, possibly just an apron behind the well.

    I just finished gluing up the main bench top tonight. So far, so good. The biggest challenge, honestly, was finding decent boards. We have a Lowe’s and Home Depot here, but it took me a long time to find good pieces.

    Has anyone else made a small bench like this? I thought I saw some in the pictures section. If so, how is it working out for you?

    #20525
    Ken
    Participant

    Jay did you have a look at these

    Workbench Gallery

    #20527
    Jay
    Participant

    Ken, thanks for the link. I saw those and was wondering about the dimensions on some of them and whether they were close to what I was going to end up with. A couple of them did list the dimensions in the captions.

    #20528
    Ken
    Participant

    Jay I think a bench with the sizes you have quoted will work just fine.
    Mine has no well, and is about 21inch wide and is more than big enough for me.

    I’m sure it will be a fine bench when its finished, so get her done. ๐Ÿ™‚

    #20529
    Jay
    Participant

    Haha… ok sounds good. I’ll be working on it some more tomorrow. ๐Ÿ™‚

    #20530
    George Bridgeman
    Participant

    Hi Jay,

    My bench is 60″ long and has a width, including the front apron, of 14.5″, so it’s only a bit bigger than the one you’re planning. The only problem you’ll have with a smaller bench is that it becomes difficult to work when building larger pieces. Assembling the coffee table was a bit of a struggle, although it’s probably an awkward project to assemble on most benches.

    For general joinery you’ll probably have enough space but you may need a bigger surface for assembly – use a dining table or something similar.

    George.

    "To know and not do is to not know"

    #20545
    BarryB
    Participant

    Take look at these blog posts from Paul, i think you’ll find what you’re looking for there:

    http://paulsellers.com/2013/01/bench-build-for-baltimore-woodworking-show/

    http://paulsellers.com/2013/01/two-days-at-the-baltimore-woodworking-show/

    Take these links for the smaller bench size combined with the youtube videos on how to build and you’ll be all set!

    Barry

    New Brunswick, Canada

    #20574
    Jay
    Participant

    George… that’s a good point. When I first decided to take on woodworking, and convert the small shop I had been using to restore antiques, I rushed out and bought a bench at HF without doing much research, and, of course, it turned out to be not very good. Fortunately, my plan is to use this bench for gluing, assembling, sharpening, etc… freeing up my new bench for the serious work. My shop is a small utility room, and I have knocked the shelving out of a wide closet in there, which fits the HF bench perfectly… painted the inside, put up some smaller overhead shelves… it’s going to be a useful little cubby.

    Barry… thanks for those links, that is exactly what I was wondering about. Mine’s going to be even slightly smaller than that, but now I’m feeling more confident about it.

    The gluing went pretty well and I’m going to be planing the bench top soon. ๐Ÿ™‚

    #20576
    david o’sullivan
    Participant

    hi jay i built from pauls book a 12″top 9″well and two aprons at 14″ if i were to make changes i would narrow the well like you said and increase bench top .the one aspect of the build which i believe is important especially with soft wood .would be enough weight for stability i had to add weight between the stretchers underneath ,best of look with it any way

    "we can learn what to do, by doing" Aristotle

    #20628
    Jay
    Participant

    David, Thanks for the advice… I may add some more width behind the well… not sure yet. Gonna see how it goes.

    I finished planing and flattening the bottom of the bench top today, and I already cross cut the top, so I’m on to the well, apron and legs soon. I feel like the toughest part is behind me.

    #20638
    Frankie Lee
    Participant

    I’d need to start thinking about what bench to build. Some nice builds on the link in post two.

    #20871
    Jay
    Participant

    I started my mortise and tenons today and had a bit of trouble. It looks very easy when Paul does it, but mine are taking a very long time and I feel like my work is not very elegant at all.

    I’m getting the hang of cutting the tenons… mainly the trouble is not having a good vise set up yet. The mortises are giving me quite a tough time though. I’m wondering if I should pick up a mortise chisel and try it that way?

    #20872
    Ken
    Participant

    Jay you only have the price of a mortice chisel to loose. I use Narex morticeing chisels, great chisels great price.

    #20873
    Jay
    Participant

    Ken, I actually just ordered a set of the Narex chisels a few days ago. I should have added one of their mortising chisels as well. I will have to do that soon.

    #20971
    Jay
    Participant

    My Narex bench chisels showed up today and I sharpened one and tried the mortising again. It was night and day. I can see that the chisels I had been using were too small. The Narex really digs in and I can get this done so much faster now.

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