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Thread: Recession/Depression low cost workbench...UPDATE June 13 2010 progress report

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Recession/Depression low cost workbench...UPDATE June 13 2010 progress report

    Hi all, well i am at a stage of woodworking where pretty much have the big tools and most of the little tools but every time i start a project i find myself needing some other jig i dont have.

    This week its a workbench. I had to stop work on my Walnut project (to be posted another day) because i found myself working on the edge of the table saw fence. Thats when i said enough.!

    So when Matt started on about workbenches i decided to build one of the plans i sent him from Popular Woodworking. Its called the $175 woodworker workbench but i hope to come in even less since i was given a nice old vice (pic later) to put on my bench.

    This bench is a clever design using plain old pine from the borg (HD) and using a size where you get no waste. Total number of lengths required is 8 lengths of 2x8 12ft long. Pic out the best and cut to size. Glue up and voila workbench.

    So part one here are the pictures to prove.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Will update as progress I have just glued up slab no3 hope to get this done by the end of the weekend.
    Last edited by Rob Keeble; 06-13-2010 at 08:47 PM. Reason: add to title
    cheers

  2. #2
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    falcon heights, minnesota
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    hmm, for $175 i could build 7 of the ones that i built, granted they would be without casters...
    benedictione omnes bene

    www.burroviejowoodworking.com

    check out my etsy store, buroviejowoodworking

  3. #3
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    Progress Update

    Hi All

    Well after a little detour down idiots lane, I am back at it with the bench. As you can see from my vise post i did not stop progress while i sorted the jointer issue out.

    So here are all the slabs all planned and jointed and waiting glue up.

    I plan on making a drilling jig to drill and place a few dowels in each slab to try and keep them in line when gluing up.

    Any comment to that idea being worthwhile or fruitless excercise? This is what i thought out not part of the budget plan.

    See pictures of progress of slabs all stacked together.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Hopefully I get to make some real progress this weekend. This was supposed to be a 30 hour project...Not!
    cheers

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Rob, that is one designed by Christopher Schwarz, so it will be a good bench, I'm sure you will get years of use out of it.

    A couple of very simple mods I'd make to that bench, make sure you put dog holes in the clamping caul that will go on the traveling face of the vice you use, and make sure you have a set of dog holes that line up with the holes in the vice caul.

    Then, buy at least two of theses............
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    >> Holdfasts By Gramercy Tools <<

    and maybe a couple of these......
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    >> Wonder Dogs <<

    You bench will become your favorite tool in your workshop!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  5. #5
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    Dec 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Keeble View Post
    I plan on making a drilling jig to drill and place a few dowels in each slab to try and keep them in line when gluing up.

    Any comment to that idea being worthwhile or fruitless excercise?
    What, no mention of possible using biscuits for this? What is the matter, afraid you will get the whole 'Biscuit Joining" thread started again? Coward!

  6. #6
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    Thanks Stu

    And Bill you just gave me some real good Friday . Thanks.

    Oh yes i thought about biscuits....but i prefer the ones i eat with choc chips in them....yes (cookies to you) biscuits in real english.

    Seriously I thought the dowel would be more stable than a wobbly low depth biscuit.
    cheers

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Delton, Michigan
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    rob if yu use square dowels or pegs it wont roll around on yu while tryun to glue up the top....
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Alpharetta GA ( Metro Atlanta)
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    I really want to build one of these so keep the pictures coming.

    The last picture of the top looks REALLY GREAT !!

    Now I understand the post about the jointer.

    This is going to get really heavy.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    ABQ NM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bartee Lamar View Post
    ...The last picture of the top looks REALLY GREAT !!...
    My thoughts exactly. I've got an old rolling cabinet with a similar "butcher block" benchtop on it, but the top is old (it was my granddad's) and in need of replacement. I may just have to see how affordable a few 2x4s would be and try something similar myself.

    As far as the glue-up, if the slabs are decently flat, I'd skip the dowels or biscuits and just use cauls at both ends to keep things aligned long enough to clamp it all up.

    This is not drawn to the right scale for your project, but it'll give you the general idea:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I use wax paper under the cauls to keep them from sticking to the glue-up.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  10. #10
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    Nov 2006
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    I think I agree with Vaughn.

    I have the Christopher Schwarz workbench book. I just looked at the Roubo bench. He gives no advice on how to glue the intermediate slabs. Just make sure you leave the clamps on some extra time.

    So I think you need to get something under them that is FLAT. that would be two 2x4's that you sight in like winding sticks. ( Not sure if winding is correct word. ) Then use cauls like Vaughn's picture.

    Good luck and let us know that you do.

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