work bench is the principal tool of the cabinet maker and
where he spends the majority of his time. This is the second
work bench I have designed and built. Mark 2 has some (I hope)
innovative ideas that I would like to share with anybody who
is interested in building their own bench. It is built from
workshop off-cuts, the only bought items are the vices. The
top is 4" thick iroko, the legs are iroko and oak, the
slatted frame work is ash.
on the images to enlarge.
image shows how the legs are bolted onto the rails. You can
just see the metal bar in the rail. This has a threaded hole
in it. The bolt locates in the bar and pulls the rail tightly
up to the leg. This gives me the option of dismantling the bench
if I need to. The legs are oak and the bottom stabilising piece
decided to have bench dogs that I could set to whatever height
I needed depending on the thickness of the work piece. This
image shows all the bench dogs in the down position.
close up (underneath the top) view of a bench dog sitting flush
with the bench top. The slot enables me to set the dog to any
height, the wing nut holds it in position.
the bench dog is in the fully up position.
bench dog in the fully up position on the top of the bench.
is called an "end vice". I have added one to both
ends of the bench. I have never been happy with any of the end
vices I have used so spent some inventing these. The general
principal is that the work is supported by the bench top when
it is cramped up.
have various sizes off inserts which slot in to the end vice
depending on the thickness of work piece, I mark the height
on the insert. This insert protrudes 10mm.
end vice in action. Clamped up is the side of a walnut jewellery
turned the bars for the end vices on my metal working vice for
accuracy. The smaller pieces were turned on my Myford woodworking
lathe. Made from off-cuts of purpleheart.
is the classic quick release record wood working vice. Originally
bought for the mark 1 bench.
have added rebates to the edges of the vice cheeks. I can slot
auxillary boards onto the cheeks if needed. Here are boards
with carpet glued on them to protect the work piece.
with most wood working benches the top is one solid mass of
wood, I decided that for my type of work I only needed to have
the front part of the top as solid. Any pounding work such as
chopping out dovetails is done at the front of the bench. The
back is made up of a number of mdf panels which I can remove
when required. I never use a bench top as an accurate flat surface,
I always use a cast machine bed.
is an adjustable support shelf which fits in holes in the front
legs of the bench.
support shelf in action.
made this vice to hold wider stock. There is a metal block "let
in" to the front of the top. There are a number of threaded
holes in the block so that I can vary the width between vice
screws to suit the work piece.
wider board sitting on the support shelf and being held securely
in the vice.
support shelf is bolted through the front legs.
have carved my name, the year it was made and my logo on the