Heres an alternate top for the Maple Workbench thats easier to build and less expensive Its built up from layers of high density particleboard and hardboard

Start building the top by cutting a core layer (V) of W'-thick high density particleboard 23 V2 wide and 63 V2" long (Fig. 1). (Or, you could use plywood or MDF.)

Cut a second core layer and a VV' hardboard cover (W) slightly larger than the first layer (24" x 64").

Glue the second layer and cover on top of the first layer with contact cement. They should extend beyond the first layer on each side.

Use a flush trim bit to trim the overhang so all three layers are the same size. (For more on this technique, see page 16.)

To get the desired thickness (2 WO, glue % "-thick particleboard spacers (X, Z) around the bottom perimeter of the benchtop (Fig. 1). If any of the spacers are not flush with the edges of the benchtop, trim the excess with the flush trim bit.

Note: It may seem easier to add another full-size layer instead of using the spacers. But using spacers limits the amount of :W particleboard needed to one 4' x 8' sheet.

I^iy out a large notch on the edge at the left front corner of the top (Fig. 2). This will form a pocket for the rear face of the vise (refer to Fig. 5).

Note: The size of this notch will depend on the vise you use. Always have your vise in hand before you start laying out the notch.

Though the depth and length of the notch is not critical (lay it out slightly oversize for your vise), the height of the notch needs to be more precise. Leave Vs" covering the top edge of the vise.

Rout out the notch using a router and a straight bit (Fig. J). Clamping an extra block to the side of the benchtop helps support the router. Rout close to the layout lines and then finish it up with a chisel. Since the notch will not be visible, it doesn't have to be precise.

Cut end aprons (AA) from W'-thick stock to width (height) to match the easy-to-^uild workbench top thickness of the benchtop (2'A"), and the same length as the benchtop's width (23 V2") (Fig. 4). Then glue and nail the end aprons in place.

Cut front and back aprons (BB) the same width (2l/->") and to length to cover the side aprons (65") (Fig. 4). Then glue and nail them in place.

Drill four "dog" holes in line with what will be the center of the vise (Fig. 4)- The size of these holes should match the dogs you will be using. I used a 74" cut-off hex head bolt as a dog (Fig. 4(0- To make it easier to

RIGHT END SPACER

FRONT/BACK SPACER

VISE END SPACER

BOTTOM VIEW

V4" HARDBOARD COVER

VISE END SPACER

BOTTOM VIEW

V4" HARDBOARD COVER

RIGHT END SPACER

FRONT/BACK SPACER

insert the dog, rout Vs" chamfers around the top edges of these holes.

With the benchtop turned upside down, set the vise in the vise pocket (Fig. 5). The top edge of the vise should bottom out in the pocket. If there's space between the benchtop and the mounting platform on the vise, cut a spacer (M) to fill this space. (I used W hardboard as a spacer.)

Tighten the vise to the apron to keep it in position and drill and bolt the vise (and the spacer) down with V/-? lag screws and washers (Fig. 5).

Glue two layers of3/}" stock face-to-face to make a vise face block (N) (Fig. (>). Cut to finished size (3" x 9") and trim a 45° bevel off each end. Open the vise, position the block flush with the top of the bench, and screw it in place.

The only difference in the base of the workbench is that you do not need a special vise arm (P) for this alternate top. The left arm is now the same as the right arm (O) (refer to Fig. 7).

Before gluing the legs (Q) and arms (O) together, drill two counterbored holes in each arm to mount the benchtop to the base (Fig. 7).

Turn the benchtop upside down and center the base (front to back) on top of it (Fig. 8). But offset the benchtop (right to left) so there's 8:i/t" from the left (vise) end of the bench to the left arm of the base.

Mark through the holes in the arms into the bottom of the benchtop. Then install Vifi" threaded inserts at each mark (Fig. 7). Finally, attach the base to the benchtop with machine bolts.

CHANGES TO MATERIALS

easy-to-build workbench top

M Vise Spacer (1) 1/4 hdbd. - 4 x 7V2 n Face Block (1) 1 V2 x 3 - 9

v Cores (2) 3/4 ptbd. - 23V2 x 63V2 w Cover (1) '/4hdbd.-23V2x63V2 X Vise End Spcr. (1) 3/4 ptbd. - 10V4 x 23V2

Y Rt. End Spcr. (1) 3/4 ptbd. - 5V4 x 23'/2 Z Fr./Bk. Spcrs. (2) 3/4 ptbd. - 3V2 x 48 AAEnd Aprons (2) 3/4x2V2-23V2

Do not need A, B, C, D, E, F, G, I, J, K, L, R S, T, U

hardware

(4) 5/is" x2V2" machine bolts w/washers

(1) 3/4" x 4" hex head bolt (cut off for dog)

(1) Record 42ED vise

LAG SCREWS

WITH WASHERS

VISE SPACER

POCKET ACCEPTS REAR FACE OF VISE

LAG SCREWS

WITH WASHERS

POCKET ACCEPTS REAR FACE OF VISE

VISE SPACER

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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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