View Full Version : My Upgraded Workbench

Steve Eure
12-15-2016, 10:54 PM
I have been contemplating building a workbench for awhile. I have been using a metal office work table as a workbench. I really wanted a wood bench. I got the idea of taking the metal table and incorporating a hardwood top and shelf underneath. I looked for a suitable hardwood,(I wanted maple, but my budget said no), so I settled for some red oak flooring that I had access to, and only paid $1 a foot for it. It was salvage flooring, tongue and groove, .77” thick. Awesome find and a great wood. When I say salvage, I don’t mean reclaimed. This wood is brand new, never used.
I did not take any pictures while building it, but this is almost the finished table, sans the vise. The top measures 34” X 60”.
I had the vise, ready to install when I noticed the faceplate was broken. A cast iron plate and it broke in two. Chinese product, although it had great reviews. The company credited me and they are sending another. Just have to be patient and wait.
I drilled dog holes in it using a template that I had made.
The bottom shelf is made from reclaimed pine from a ceiling in an old building from the late 1800’s. This wood is in excellent condition also.
I glued the top panels together in stages so I could run them though my planer. The knives are fairly sharp, but my DW735 didn’t take to the oak too well. I ended up gluing the whole top up and doubling it to just over 1 ½”. Then took a hand plane to it to help smooth it out. Added two Rockler double tracks on the corner opposite the vise, and added a different set of casters so I could raise and lower it when needed.
Finish is a mixture of BLO, MS, and spar varnish, equal amounts with 2 coats.
Heavy and stable.

This is the picture of me holding the vise faceplate where it will be installed when it gets here.
Picture of the ¾” dog holes
This last picture is the bottom shelf from the late 19th century store ceiling made of pine.

Pete Janke
12-16-2016, 2:16 AM
Your bench looks great. Mine is made out of fir lumber from the big box store. I used cheap laminate flooring to cover the top.It is tough, easy to scrape off glue and paint, and easy to replace. This is an old picture. It now has dog holes.

glenn bradley
12-16-2016, 10:47 AM
Well done Steve. Good adaptation of the metal frame to meet your needs and available material.

Charles Biddles
01-27-2017, 10:51 PM
How strong is the tongue and groove flooring for a top though? It seems imo like it would be a bad choice due to the thickness.

Rich Riddle
02-02-2017, 11:50 PM
Both of you have nice benches. Yours are the types of benches that see years of use. Enjoy them.