Popular Woodworking 2001-02 № 120, страница 53

Popular Woodworking 2001-02 № 120, страница 53

For about the cost of a quality jigsaw

you can build a bench that will retire from woodworking long after you do. And by the way, the price includes everything — wood, hardware and even the vise.

by Christopher Schwarz

I've hauled my grandfather's workbench across snow-covered Appalachian mountains, down narrow stairwells and into a dirt-floored garage that should have been torn down during the Eisenhower administration. I've built a lot of good stuff on that bench, but now it's time to retire the old horse.

For starters, the bench is too low for the way I work. And the top is pockmarked with three different shapes and sizes of dog holes. And during the last few years I've become fed up with the tool tray. The only thing it seems designed to hold is enough sawdust for a family of gerbils. So I need a new bench, but there's no way I'm going to spend $1,200 to $1,400 for a high-quality bench from Hoffman & Hammer or Ulmia.

Enter Bob Key from Georgia. He and his son have been building benches using off-the-rack pine for a few years and have even built a website showing how quick and easy this is to do (visit them at www.mindspring.com/~bobkey/ beginners.htm). I was impressed with their idea. So I spent a week reading every book on benches I could find. I pored over the woodworking catalogs. And after a lot of figuring I came up with a simple plan: Build a bench for

less than $175.

Believe it or not, I came in 92 cents under budget and ended up with a bench that is tough, sturdy and darn versatile. I made a few compromises when choosing the hardware to keep the cost down, but I designed the bench so that it can later be upgraded with a nice tail vise. However, I made no com-

8 2 x 8 x 12' Southern yellow pine boards @ $9.57 each

8 3/8" x 16 x 6" hex bolts @ 51 cents each

8 3/8" x 16 hex nuts @ 7 cents each

16 5/l6" washers @ 3 cents each

Veritas Bench Dog

(see Supplies for ordering information)

Veritas Wonder Dog

(see Supplies for ordering information)

Veritas Front Vise

(see Supplies for ordering information)

76.56. 4.08.56' .488.95' 19.95' 63.50

Total Cost

plus tax and



53 Popular Woodworking February 2001

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