Woodworking in the great white north.

2012 is the year of the workbench

I’m not saying this just for me, look around the blogosphere and you’ll find plenty of buzz about workbenches.  Chris Schwarz, ever the woodworking barometer, has moved on past workbenches but has provided a great starting place for those of us currently suffering from workbench envy and repeated cursing at our current workbench that breaks almost every rule in the book…or books as it were.  Why is there some much buzz right now?  I think it’s because we’re all playing catch up to those who are proudly reaping the benefits of a great bench.  I am.

So, yes, I have been reading and drawing and sketchuping in an effort to figure out exactly what I want from a bench and how I’ll go about getting it.  More than a year ago I realized that I badly needed a new bench and was stuck for where the heck it was going to go.  That discussion can be found here.

I’m happy to say that I’ve resolved myself to a solution that will ideally give me most of what I was looking for without drastically rebuilding my workshop in the process.

I will trim down the outfeed/assembly bench that I have and open up space for the new workbench.  The old lab bench that makes up the back half of the assembly bench will be shuffled around with the shelves and an existing cabinet and go against the wall, freeing up an area that I hope will be more efficient for hand tool work on the new bench.

Now…what type of bench am I making you ask?  I’ll go into a lot more detail over the next few posts, but I’ll give it a title.  The bench borrows from many benches that I’ve seen and played around with at WIA and NEWWS over the last two years.  I’m calling it The Petite 21st Century Split Top Roubo Plus.  The ‘Plus’ is my own deviation from the commandments set out in Chris’s workbench books…yes, it is folly to do this, but as the Anarchist wrote….Disobey Me.  Done!

Now that that’s out of the way, let’s start working on a bench…

One response

  1. Ian,
    Sounds like you’re off to a great start on the bench. 2012 will certainly be the year of the bench. Mine is about 1 to 3 months from starting, but I’ve named it too: The Clockwork Bench. Read Anthony Burgess, study the 21st Century Bench, the LVL Workbench and my own crazy ideas (and Aaron’s prodding) and you’ll know what I mean.

    Good luck with the build. I can’t wait to watch it come along.

    January 17, 2012 at 10:51 pm

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