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Woodworking Bench Detail Image:

Work benches for craftsfolk

Workbench closeup - click for full article
This bench is a cross between my "dream" bench and wood benches I had built in the past. This bench was quickly designed to suit a musical instrument building project with two young children (thus the two vices).

Nominal
Trade
Actual
Inches
Metric
mm
2x4 1.5 x 3.5 38.1 x 88.9
2x6 1.5 x 5.5 38.1 x 139.7
1x6 .75 x 5.5 19 x 139.7
2x10 1.5 x 9.25 38.1 x 235
2x12 1.5 x 11.25 38.1 x 285.8
The materials used in this project as in all the wood benches I have built in the past is common framing lumber. In the U.S. lumber is described by its "nominal" size. This nominal was once the actual size but tolerances were added and the saw mills took some of that tolerance. Tolerances changed and mills took ALL the tolerance so that a two inch board is actually one and a half. Lumber over eight inches has a 3/4" tolerance and they take 100% of that as well. So U.S. lumber is considerably less than it used to be.

This chart has the actual size of the lumber given to reduce duplication of converted values.

This is a large bench. It was designed for two to work at as well as support large musical instruments like a harp. The top of the bench is three 2x12's plus a sliding 2x4, plus a .75" facia board covered with a .25" maple face. This results in a depth of 38.25" (972mm) and the back edge extends another 12" (305mm). The width is 72" (1820mm) and it is 36" (910mm) tall.


The vice jaws are faced with 3/4" (19mm) hard maple that extends 5/8" (16mm) to the top and sides. The trim strengthens the top edge and partially encloses the vice dog.

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