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I have been working on the workbench for about 6 weekends and a few nights.  If I added up all the actual time of physical labor I would say maybe 20 – 40 hours.  The Workbench is not pretty but it is utilitarian solid and very heavy.  I do not plan on keeping this workbench for more than a couple of years until I can actually afford to build a bench of solid hardwood and top of the line hardware.  Right now I have a good solid workbench.

I constructed this bench out of construction lumber; southern yellow pine and white pine.  I needed to build this on the cheap and fast so to speed up the build I used 14mm x 140mm dominoes for the joinery.  I have a leg vise which utilizes a Yost bench screw.  The leg vise works pretty good but will refine it in the very near future.  The workbench is based on the split-top Roubo style of bench.  The two slabs are not permanently attached to the base and can be easily removed; this is done with a tenon on the top of the legs and lag screws trough the top stretcher into the bottom of the slab.  This is the only time I did not use dominoes.  This bench is for chopping, hammering, sawing and planing.  The workbench is not perfectly flat but flat enough for what I will use it for.

I made a couple of mistakes when building this bench and mostly because I rushed this build.  First mistake I made is when gluing the leg assemblies.  I glued the two lower stretchers to one set of legs and the upper stretchers to the other set of legs.  This mistake is due poor organization and marking the stretchers with numbers.  I used lines to mark the alignment of the stretchers to the legs; because they where all marked with the exact spacing they lined up.  I know your thinking whats the big deal?  The upper stretchers are narrower then the lower stretchers, so to hide that fact I was placing them on the top of the legs so the bench top would hide that.  Now I have one leg assembly with flush stretchers and the other with 1/8″ offset stretchers.

Second, the front and rear stretchers are not parallel to each other.  This occurred during glue up when I put the rear stretcher in backwards.  I had a hard time reading my marks / numbers and the glue up is very involved and I had to work quick so each end of the stretcher went into the wrong leg which raised the rear stretcher about an inch.  So even with numbers and marks I still goofed.  It is nerve racking to do a large extensive glue up when you are doing it yourself.  The lower stretchers consisted of 16 Dominoes and Titebond III doesn’t have a long an open time as advertised especially with a relatively dry environment.  I did pin all the tenons.

All in all the bench turned out decent.  I wasn’t expecting a show piece so the mistakes are not a big deal, I just wanted to bring my experience to the table.  I didn’t use plans or measured drawings I shot from the hip measured and cut as I went.  I knew what I wanted to do and how to do it.  It is time consuming when laminating wood to make large pieces.  I have a fair amount of clamps but not enough for more than one big glue up at a time, so laminating are at a minimum 12 hours.  This is one main reason it took so many weekends to get this bench built.  If you have any question please leave it in the comments.

Thanks for reading this post and I will put pictures up as soon as I can.