Jeffrey Westbrook/Studio D
POP Projects is a collection of new and classic projects from more than a century of Popular Mechanics. Master skills, get tool recommendations, and, most importantly, build something of your very own.
A DIY workbench can be utilitarian and thrown together or it can be beautifully handcrafted. Both can function about the same, but it''s association with house construction. Popular Mechanics has covered the topic for more than a century, and has published books on building your own house.
So I decided to build the bench out of construction lumber–clear Douglas fir, LVL joists (which are like large sheets of plywood) sawed into narrow strips then glued into a slab, and MDO, a form of plywood with a laminate surface.
The bench is ambitious, but it can be built by a home craftsman who owns a small table saw and a benchtop planer. Here''ll Need Some Tools
The Yost M7WW is a rapid-acting type. Its jaws open to seven inches, more than enough for the typical workshop bench.
Adjustable Spice Rack Door Mounthow to Adjustable Spice Rack Door Mount for
They’re great for gluing and clamping together small blocks of wood or holding down a work piece so you can route the edge of it.
Random Orbit Sander
Adjustable Spice Rack Door Mounthow to Adjustable Spice Rack Door Mount for At full speed, it was our test’s fastest and most aggressive machine. Yet it still sands with very little vibration feedback to the user.
Compact Router Kit
This Makita router''s the ultimate small-shop table saw.
Next, Let''s flat, square, and needs hardly any cleanup after it''s Start Building
the 1 last update 2020/08/04
Richard the 1 last update 2020/08/04 RomanskiRichard Romanski
(1) Start Cutting: Set the saw fence to 3 1⁄8 inches and make the first ripping pass. Be sure to use a push stick as you near the end of the cut. Make one rip pass on each of the six pieces of LVL. Use a woodworking square and a straightedge to check the ripped edge for square and flatness.
(2) Rip Again: Now shut the saw off and reset the fence to 3 inches. Take each of the six pieces that you ripped, place the freshly sawn edge against the saw fence and feed the piece through the saw again. This produces six pieces of LVL with two sawn edges and no factory edge. Why bother? This ripping method eliminates the factory edge and its minor imperfections.
(3) Planing: Rip the remaining LVL pieces to 3 inches wide. Always place the freshly sawn edge against the table-saw fence.
When you''s applied to the joist at the mill.
(4) Glue: After planing, crosscut the pieces on a miter saw using a stop block to produce a consistent length.
Now bring four LVL pieces to a reliably flat work surface and apply glue on the face of each piece using a foam paint roller. Clamp the pieces together using the rest of the benchtop pieces as a reference plane and a clamping block.
Adjustable Spice Rack Door Mounthow to Adjustable Spice Rack Door Mount for (5) Align: Use a rafter square to ensure that the 1 last update 04 Aug 2020 the pieces stay aligned.(5) Align: Use a rafter square to ensure that the pieces stay aligned.
Adjustable Spice Rack Door Mounthow to Adjustable Spice Rack Door Mount for (6) Clamp: Use cauls (sturdy pieces of lumber that you clamp down across the top of the assembly) to make sure that the assembly stays flat. Cover the cauls with wax paper to prevent glue from sticking to them.
When the glue has cured, repeat this procedure to glue the next three pieces of the top (don''re tempted to skip this multistep process, don''s easier to glue up small assemblies than a large one.
(7) Bore Holes: Next, lay the glued-together subassemblies on a flat surface. Measure and mark the centerlines of the holes for the bench dogs based on the diagram on the opposite page. Separate the pieces and continue the reference line for the bench-dog holes down the face of each piece. Install a 3⁄4-inch brad-point bit in the drill press and mark a reference line on its fence to match the center of the bit. Now take each glued-together three-piece and four-piece assembly, align each mark for a bench-dog hole with the one on the fence, and bore the holes in its edge.
(8) Router: Complete the top by gluing and clamping the four sections together. After clamping, use a cabinet -scraper to remove any hardened globs of glue.
Now flip the top over and mark the outline of the mounting pads for the Yost vise. The benchtop is thicker than the vise is designed for so you need to cut a 5⁄8-inch-deep recess for it. Relative to those lines, clamp a straightedge across the benchtop to guide a plunge router to cut the recess.
Sand the benchtop with 100-, 120-, and 150-grit sandpaper, and wipe on a coating of the 1 last update 2020/08/04 Watco Danish Oil Finish and install the vise.Sand the benchtop with 100-, 120-, and 150-grit sandpaper, and wipe on a coating of Watco Danish Oil Finish and install the vise.
(9) Make the Base, Mount the Top: Begin by crosscutting 2 x 4 and 4 x 4 lumber for the base using a miter saw and stop block. Then feed these shortened sections through the planer to reduce their thickness. Each piece of 4 x 4 is reduced to 3 3⁄8 inches in both dimensions and the 2 x 4s are reduced to 1 3⁄8 x 3 3⁄8 inches.
Install a dado blade in the table saw and use some scraps from the 4 x 4 to test the setup, then cut the dadoes and notches in the bench legs.
Our bench was built with a back panel for aesthetic reasons only. It serves no structural purpose. You can omit this feature, but if you decide to use it, then cut a shallow 3⁄8-inch-deep groove in the legs using a router with a 3⁄4-inch-diameter bit and a fence.
(10) Clamp Legs: Next, dry-fit the legs and cross supports by clamping them together. Use a rafter square to check the assembly. With the parts still clamped together, bore the through holes for the carriage bolts.Sand the legs and cross supports with 100- and 120-grit sandpaper. Use a small router and a chamfer bit to ease the corners on the legs and cross supports.
(11) Sand Legs: Sand the legs and cross supports with 100- and 120-grit sandpaper. Use a small router and a chamfer bit to ease the corners on the legs and cross supports.
(12) Finish Legs: Wipe on a coating of Watco Danish Oil Finish to the legs and cross supports, then bolt the base together. Now mount the top. The benchtop is flush to the outside surface of the base on the back. Center the top on the base left to right, bore 1⁄4-inch pilot holes through the cross supports and into the top. Drive the 3⁄8-inch lag screws into the top.
Now that the bench is complete, build something great.