My workbench build

The following story is taken from a work in progress thread I made on UKWorkshop Forum when I originally built the bench so remarks or names I might have made may not make sense as the post replies have been edited.

Work bench build

So I’ve started it, some may recall I asked what to build it with, beech was the most popular so beech was ordered.

No it’s not all for the bench, next on the books is a table.

This is the top I designed as a guide for building it, the front vice will be the Record 53 I picked up for £10, no design just yet for the legs.

So I sized some of the planks from the stock to 2″ x 4″ and a little over 6ft long and started glueing up the centre part of the top.

Half of the top in clamps, half already glued.

Here’s an update on the latest work

Shoulders were cut to take a breadboard end.

Then a side was added with square 3/4″ dogholes.

The agenda for tomorrow is add a length to finnish off the side for the dog holes. Then cut the shoulders on the other end.

So pieces were added finishing the side with the dog holes.

Clamped two long sash cramps down each side to act as rails for a jig to carry the router.

The jig just sits on the rails, the gap in the jig guides the router that’s fitted with guide.

Nearly done routing

and with very little sanding, one perfectly level top. 😆

Next step is to fit the end pieces.

Didn’t have time to do anything yesterday, but today I managed to make up the end piece where the tail vice will be fitted.

Bottom of end piece and side is already routed ready to take bottom and back of bench.

Poly glue on first third of top only. Six dowels will allow for any movment.

The left hand end bread board is fitted

I might rout the area where the record vice will be positioned to make the face of the vice (including wood jaw face) flush with the front face of the bench. Would anyone here recommend it being flush?

The tail vice components have been added, now just a matter of making up the box to fit it.

Even though I cut the support block that holds the threaded flange perfectly square, I had to add shims because of the poor casting, because when I screwed it tight it tried to jam up the screw action.

The bottom of the trough was sized up using offcuts when I sized the top, the first pic shows the bottom glued and clamped up. (note the bench top is upside down)

Pic 2. With the top the right way up shows the bottom in and one of the angled end pieces cut ready to insert in the tool trough.

Pic 3. A close up of the piece fitted.

Pic 4. Shows the trough finnished.

Next tuit job is finnish the Tail vice and then fit the old Record 53.

The tail vice was added today

Pic 1 shows the top and retaining slide.
Pic 2 shows the top in place and the side piece about to be fitted.
Pic 3 With the bench upside down the bottom is ready to be fitted, the slide retaining piece is already fitted to the bottom. In the far right of the pic is the end piece which will be fitted in the jaw.
Pic 4 Finnished except for cutting a dog hole.

Started to fit the Record 53 today.

Pic 1, Cut a large hole for the back of the vice to fit into.

I know it looks odd but the pic was taken with the bench on its side, the clamp is its self clamped to another bench so it can’t be knocked over.

Pic 2, Is just a close up of the same routed hole.

Pic 3, With the back in position I can now cut some beech to fit the void, remove the vice back, screw the wood to the vice and then refit the vice to the bench top. 😀

Apart from a light sanding all over, these last few pics conclude the work on the bench top.

Pic 1, Piece of wood cut to fit over the vice front and will be the rear jaw.

Pic 2, Corners cut off, more for aesthetics than real need.

Pic 3, Holes bored through to take the front jaw and a little planning.

Pic 4, All bolted in, Planed and sanded.

That concludes the work top. 😀 😀 😀

Now for a start on the base.

Pic 5, Ripped planned and glued, four legs ready for sizing.

My first design looks to short, but I tried sitting on the ends of the top (i’m 19 stone) with a timber where the legs would be and it didn’t budge, so it would be ok.

Then I came up with the idea of lengthening it on the face vice end and instead of making the area a drawer, I could have a top swing open compartment with a 4″ extractor fitting to suck up chippings and saw dust. What do you think?

Ok it’s not going to collect all the dust, but I think it would help.

(Pic 1) All the rails now have tennons cut.

(Pic 2) The lower front & back rails have been cut with a curve on the lower face.

(pic 3) 8 morices done, 8 to go. Here is one end dry fitted.

I don’t know if to make the end panels up out of beech or to go and buy some beech 1/2″ ply, what would you do?

Well I did make up the panels from beech as Andy (Dedee) suggested.

Here the right hand panel gets glued up.

You may not have noticed I chamfered all the arrises to within 2″ of the corners.

The second pic shows the chamfers better but is only dry fitted prior to drilling dowel holes through the joints.

Finally both ends panels are complete, glued up and with dowels fitted.

The base is completed just a light sanding to go.

This pic is viewed from the back (the back panel is just 1/2″ ply).

This is the view from the front.

I did think about having cupboards but I’ve now decided to put in three long drawers using full length pull slides.

The drawers are next on the agenda.

Ordered six draw runners yesterday afternoon from screwfix, this morning they duly arrived, bravo for screwfix. 😀

I didn’t want any glue or fixings on the end panel so I attached the draw support with glue on the ends only and pocket screws.

Pic 1 shows the supports and one runner in place.

Pic 2, The three drawers dry fitted and waiting for bottoms.

Hopefully tomorrow the draws will be glued up and fitted.

I finished the drawers and fitted them.

Pic 1, Just one draw front to go.

Pic 2, The front is flush with bench top and handles would get knocked off, so no handles.

Pic 3, Just a close up of the chamfer detail.

Managed to finnish the drawers this morning, and so it’s upside down time to fit the base to the top.

Pic 1 Positioning the base with bench base sitting on the tennons on the legs.

Pic 2. Making sure its spot on in position.

Pic 3. marking around the tennons (sorry for the fuzzy pic)

Well this morning has seen a big shift around moving stuff to find some more room (been there before got the tea shirt) and finally the top goes on the base.

Next and final thing is to fit the Record 53 on.

And so folks the show comes to an end, It is finished maybe a light sanding and then some teak oil, but the woodworking is finished.

So here are the final pics.

Pic 1, The vice face is fitted and I was careful enough to leave the 3 degree angle on the face to match the Record face.

Pic 2, Even though I’ve lost 2.1/2″ of jaw depth in total because of how I fitted the vice in, it’s still IMHO a whopper. 😀

Pic 3 & 4. The Final Pics.

Pic of the Bench in it’s final position under the tool cabinet which was under construction when I took the pic.

Well that’s it Folks, and for a finally (sp?) we all sing “It ain’t half heavy it’s my brother” 🙂

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