Download Fine Woodworking's Best Workbenches (Gnv64) PDF

TitleFine Woodworking's Best Workbenches (Gnv64)
Tags Tools Wood Industrial Processes Woodworking
File Size26.9 MB
Total Pages179
Document Text Contents
Page 1

W Best
Workbenches

From the Editors of
Fine Woodworking

Page 89

a small workbench th at works 83

How it’s used and what it holds
This benchtop’s small size (321⁄4 in. by 591⁄4 in.) belies
its versatility. The author’s most-often-used hand
tools fit compactly but comfortably in storage under
the top. Layout tools, chisels, planes and spoke-
shaves, saws, rasps, files, scrapers, sanding blocks,

hammers, and carving tools all have specific homes.
There’s even a spot for one very essential tool—a
clipboard to record billable hours of time spent on
jobs in the shop.

The vise is an adjustable clamp.
A series of benchdog holes in the top

line up with the center of the vise for

clamping workpieces of varying lengths.

Securing the workpiece without
clamps. A hardwood batten thinner
than the workpiece butts against two

benchdogs in the top to serve as a stop.

Out of harm’s way. When it’s not
needed, this 3-ft. Starrett® straightedge
lives in a slot under the benchtop.

Drawers do more than hold things.
In combination with the vise, they also

support workpieces such as this large

mahogany carcase piece.

Every tool has its place. The
contents of each drawer are

custom-fit.

Page 90

84

John W h i t e
A New-Fangled

Workbench

For five years I worked as a cabinetmaker in a shop that used only hand tools for the simple
reason that electricity wasn’t available that
far back in the woods. One lesson that I
came away with was the importance of a
good workbench—and lots of windows. I
now work in a shop that is, if anything, over
electrified, but a functional workbench is still
important. Just because you’re driving a car
instead of a buggy doesn’t mean you don’t
need a good road to get where you’re going.

On a perfect bench, the various vises and
stops would hold any size workpiece in the
most convenient position for the job at hand.
Traditional workbenches are adequate for
clamping smaller pieces, a table leg or frame
rail for instance, but most benches can’t han-
dle wide boards for edge- and face-planing or
frame-and-panel assemblies.

Recently, I moved my shop and needed to
build a new bench. I began by researching
traditional American and European designs.
I found that although our predecessors had
many clever solutions to the problems of
holding down a piece of wood, no one bench
solved all or even most of the problems I
had encountered in 25 years of woodwork-
ing. Frustrated, I finally decided to design a
bench from the ground up.

At first I had no success. A design would
address one problem but not another, or it
would be far too complex. I was about to give
up and build a traditional German bench
when I came up with a design that incorpo-
rates pipe clamps into the bench’s top, the
front apron, and even the legs.

Planing beam slides on pipes
On the front of the bench is an adjustable,
T-shaped planing beam that runs the full
length of the bench. It is supported on both
ends by the sliding tailpieces of Pony® pipe
clamps. The 1⁄2-in. cast-iron pipes on which
the clamps slide are incorporated into the
bench’s legs. I used Pony clamps throughout

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Page 179

Learn How To:

• Choose, build, and customize
a workbench

• Select and install useful clamps
and vises

• Use benchdogs, stops, holdfasts,
and bench hooks

• Add built-in tool storage to
a workbench

• Repair benchtops, bases, and vises

Look for other Taunton Press books wherever books
are sold or visit our website at www.taunton.com.

The TaunTon Press

63 south Main street, P.o. Box 5506
newtown, CT 06470-5506
www.taunton.com

Pp

Visit www.finewoodworking.com, the single
best source of woodworking ideas and
information anywhere, to learn about other
Taunton Press woodworking books and
Fine Woodworking magazine.

Every woodworker needs a bench to hold and support work, for everything from stock preparation to finishing. Whether you
need a simple workstation, want a sturdy bench that will last for
decades, or are looking to enhance an existing or ready-made bench,
Fine Woodworking Best Workbenches offers the best projects and
designs, ranging from traditional to special-purpose workbenches and
those sporting the latest innovations and hardware. You’ll also find a
host of tips and jigs that will expand your workbench’s capability.

The Most Important
Tool in the Shop

Taunton Product #077621

CraFTs & hoBBIes

Also AvAilAble

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