Work Bench Build #2: Workshop and Tools

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My workshop has served my family well. Now it is time to dedicate some space to woodworking. It can accomidate about 10 people in comfort watching a big screen with full 12 speaker surround sound and cable.

Complete with fridge and microwave. So I have been moving things around and built a bench to build a bench.

My wife is wondering why that bench won’t just do? Specially after my very first bench in our first home that was a hollow slab door attached to a wall in the furnace room some 29 years ago. A friend had cleaned out a barn and gave me some things. A 150 yr plus old leg vise and #7 plane. Both of which were barely recognizable from rust, and (2) 10’ long 6″×6″ posts that were quite weathered and half covered in dried mud from being buried. This bench was a snap by adding a few 2×4′s and a sheet of plywood doubled up, it was up and running. Next was the leg vise and plane, both needed a lot of rust removal. The leg vise had peg holes in an attached board at the bottom, but i made a criss cross out of wood so it wouldn’t rack and I wouldn’t have to bend over.

I used a 2″×6″piece of pine for the chop and painted the metal black, installed the wooden crisscross. I mounted one of my new benches vises on the end temporarily to work with. The plane turned out ok but I have no idea what brand it is and the blade is very thin after the rust is gone. I plan on using it on the top. The handle is glued together but not all their.

I moved my saw/bench to make room for the new Roubo and mocked up the layout all around. I positioned the mock Roubo and am quite pleased with the layout.

Next was to add supports to the mitre saw and replace the fence on the table saw so I could do more precise cuts.

I sharpened all the saws, planes, chisels, checked the alignment on all the tool, and, bought another 10 clamps. The vises I had bought a few weeks ago are 2 screw types, 1 to act as a leg vise and the other to act as a wagon vise. And a 9" single screw front face vise. I still want to buy a 10" record style quick release so each corner can be used on the bench. With the shop in shape I’m starting to lay the boards for the top out to see what’s warped and straight. Thanks for following so far.

-- CHRIS, Charlottetown PEI Canada. Anytime you can repurpose, reuse, or recycle, everyone wins!

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Full speed chief. I am really interested in what you will build. I have the feeling it’s going to be different from the traditional benches.

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA

Any tools you wanna throw my way Ian….the CMS is relatively new. I have gone thru 4 of the cheaper ones over the years and this one deserves a proper fence. It was a x-mas present from my kids last year, and my son picked it out. He is a master gold seal carpenter, man I am so proud to say that! And yes Mike the shop has and does double duty as a family room at times, as well it is a lobster restaurant, general storage for distant relatives, card party marathon Texas hold ’em weekends, etc etc etc. From now on it is going to be a carpentry workshop. The point is to take my time, follow my ideas, and hand build from scratch a workbench / Alter to the woodworking gods, that will be a showcase as well as a tool. If I wanted to save money I would have just stopped at the bench to build a bench on like my wife suggested. This may be costly but it is what I want to spend my time at for the next while anyways. I do really love your bench mike, and making it your own to do what you need it to do was fantastic. Saving money is always a good thing specially with the cost of wood. For me this build is about doing what I want to do for the first time ever so it may scare most people what I am willing to do to get it my way. The workshop preparations completed now I am cooking with gas!

-- CHRIS, Charlottetown PEI Canada. Anytime you can repurpose, reuse, or recycle, everyone wins!

I have to admit that I’m a little confused. Is this a workshop cum family room? Anyway, I’m looking forward to your bench build.

My own bench started life as heavy duty trestle table 20 or 30 years ago eventually winding up in a thrift store (without accompanying chairs). I paid the equivalent of $100 for it and made a very solid workbench that I love. I only had to raise the top a few inches to a good working height and mount some vises on it. If I had purchased the materials for it, it would have cost me at least $300 and a whole lot of work. Just an idea if you are still in the planning stages. Here’s a pic.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway

Interesting use of the space.
I love “I built a bench to build a bench”.
You are definitely taking the time to prepare for the build. My CMS have been crying for a fence since I bought it 5 years ago.
Will be following along. Whenever I see all the bench building blog, I feel a wakeup call to dump the harborfreight bench and build a solid one. I will not be a roubo as I need storage space.
I have not come to term that many of the tools I bought when I started needs to go as they are barely used.

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA

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