Split Roubo Workbench #25: Workbench Bling Yo

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Blog entry by lysdexic posted 11-10-2012 01:12 PM 24473 reads 7 times favorited 25 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 24: Flattening and finishing Part 25 of Split Roubo Workbench series no next part

Every bench needs some bling. Check this.

It is all in the way we accessorize.


I have used a holdfast in my deadman and it works OK but I wanted a more controlled clamping mechanism. Thus, inspired by Smitty, I bought a Stanley #203 from Patrick Leach. THis requires some modifications to the deadman. First, the #203 requires a 1” hole where mine were 3/4”. Also, the depth of the hook is 7/8” where as my deadman is 1 1/2” thick.

This makes me nervous. Re-drilling a row of holes.

Routing the back. Note that my first pass was to deep and I had to “repair” it by gluing in a 1/8” shim.


My bench weighs exactly a bejeezus load. I have a small shop and WILL need to move it from time to time. Thus, I gots me some rimz. My neighbor does metal fabrication and he made these brackets from a sketch. The casters are from Lowe’s.

They ended up being a bit too big so I sawed them down with a hacksaw, beveled off the sharp corners and drilled a new hole.

I did a test fit and run on my sacrificial, pine, leg mock-up.


I really like Derek Cohen’s idea of using a guide bracket to dampen the play in parallel guide. It also limits racking. However, it is not a perfect fit and allows about 1/16” of play.

Before when you spin the hand wheel bringing the chop rapidly in or out the chop gave that clunck, clunck, clunck as the inertia of your hand shakes the chop back and forth. That is eliminated. It is a small thing but results in a much smoother operation.

Making the bracket….....

Employed the technique used through out the rest of the bench. Drilled and tapped a hole for a 1/4” -20 hex head screw.


The plan calls for leather on the chop and the corresponding face of the bench top. However, in my semi-military mind, this compromises this clamping plane of the leg and benchtop the we have worked so hard to achieve. Thus, I put suede only on the chop using spray adhesive.


Back to the dogs. I decided to make the longer dogs as per the plan. They just work better than the short dog.

  • To the galoots out there. If I can avoid pulling out, hooking up, and setting up my jointer, planer, and chop saw I will.

I had a scrap wide enough to get dogs out of each piece.

Milled to thickness with a jack and smoother…................

The prototype dog was traced out and I let the dogs out using the band saw. A little finish, brass screws and leather. Bling yo!

Note to self: an impact wrench will rip the head off a brace screw – illustrated for remembrance.

The final fit of the dog in the bench top…......


While I am at it, I decided to trick out the holdfasts. I used two pieces of cardboard to form a “templet” to conform to the contour of the tip.


A sticker on the wagon vise…...

and one on the chop.


And with that – this bench is complete.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - nobodhi_here

25 comments so far

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


17825 posts in 4076 days

#1 posted 11-10-2012 01:48 PM

Glue leather to the face of the round of the #203 as well; it helps prevent marks on what’s being held.

Beautiful stuff, Lysdexic!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. - OldTools Archive -

View sb194's profile


197 posts in 4476 days

#2 posted 11-10-2012 01:56 PM

I am jealous. That is all I can say. The bench turned out great and will last for generations.

Excellant work.


View GrandpaLen's profile


1652 posts in 3730 days

#3 posted 11-10-2012 02:32 PM


First I’d like to say your Craftsmanship on the Bench is superb.

Next I’ll have to say how much I’ve enjoyed the Tutorial Blog and your strength of character in sharing your errors, but more so how you overcame them.
You have shown us that it’s not how badly we err, it’s how well we can recover and every mistake doesn’t necessarily end up as firewood.

Your bench is a ‘benchmark’ in your “Projects Gallery” to be proud of, for sure.

Thanks for taking us through your build and the extra effort of putting together such an intricate Blog, it’s been inspirational.

I beleive ‘Mother Nature’ should be Proud of what you have done with her Trees.

Work Safely and have Fun. – Grandpa Len.

-- Mother Nature should be proud of what you've done with her tree. - Len ...just north of a stone's throw from the oHIo, river that is, in So. Indiana.

View ShaneA's profile


7085 posts in 4056 days

#4 posted 11-10-2012 03:16 PM

Yeah Scott, thanks for the efforts and guts to share. Obviously, it looks amazing. I was wondering what you meant when you previously mentioned stickers, I was fearful of something else….but now I get it. You have done a great job, you should be proud, and confident to tackle the next build knowing you have a great bench to help you on your way. Bravo!

View Boatman53's profile


1089 posts in 3654 days

#5 posted 11-10-2012 03:17 PM

Thanks for doing all the posting and documenting (the good and the bad). You have one great bench there and much better than you can buy. You will enjoy it every day.

-- Jim, Mid coast, Maine home of the chain leg vise

View Mosquito's profile


11757 posts in 3750 days

#6 posted 11-10-2012 05:07 PM

It all looks so great! Those casters are almost exactly what I had in mind for my bench, except I was going to use those style hinges, and a board, because I don’t have access to a welder lol

Bet it feels great to have it done. Can’t wait to see it in use!

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN - -

View Jorge G.'s profile

Jorge G.

1537 posts in 3933 days

#7 posted 11-10-2012 05:20 PM

I hate to break it to you, but this seems to me a better option and you could have kept your 3/4 inch holes. In any case, good job on the dead man.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

View Brit's profile


8508 posts in 4300 days

#8 posted 11-10-2012 06:05 PM

I’m working today, but when I saw there was a Scoty B Yo bench update, I dropped everything. Not sure I would have done that to the deadman if it was my bench, but I like the rest of what you’ve done. The absence of this great blog will leave a gaping hole in the blogesphere that will be difficult to fill. Thanks Scott for taking us on the journey.

-- Andy - Old Chinese proverb says: "If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it."

View lysdexic's profile


5353 posts in 4080 days

#9 posted 11-10-2012 07:44 PM

Well, I didn’t realize that I was ruining my deadman. Smitty told me that if I used the vintage #203 everybody would like me. He said that I would finally be one of the guys.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - nobodhi_here

View ShaneA's profile


7085 posts in 4056 days

#10 posted 11-10-2012 08:02 PM

That is why you have guts…you went for it. Put it out there for all to see/comment on. It was a brave move. I am glad you did it. I know I couldn’t. If you don’t like how it looks/works. You can adapt it later. No harm.

View lysdexic's profile


5353 posts in 4080 days

#11 posted 11-10-2012 09:06 PM

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - nobodhi_here

View Mauricio's profile


7170 posts in 4609 days

#12 posted 11-10-2012 09:25 PM

•Scott you should patent your hinged caster idea.
•How does the vise grip with leather on only one side?
•The color of the bench top really looks awesome, I really like it.
•I like how you didn’t skimp on any details before calling it done. I would have left a bunch of stuff to finish later. The leather on the holdfasts look great. I have to do that one.

It all looks amazing and I can just imagine the sense of satisfaction and accomplishment you must feel. At the same time I bet your just a little sad that that journey is over. It’s like, “now what”, “what can top that sense of accomplishment”. But now you can enjoy using it and having the perfect clamping solution to any hand or power tool operation.

This bench will be a source of awe for centuries to come. Hopefully it never ends up in some yuppies house as a sofa console. If it does, may Al’s ghost come back and throat punch that yuppie. ;-)


-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Don W's profile

Don W

20384 posts in 4025 days

#13 posted 11-10-2012 09:44 PM

I’m with you on the dead man Scott. I’ve been looking for a 203 for a while. Nice job on everything. I like your dogs to.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View Jorge G.'s profile

Jorge G.

1537 posts in 3933 days

#14 posted 11-10-2012 10:22 PM

He said that I would finally be one of the guys.

You haven’t been one of the guys, you have been THE guy after you built this bench so well… :-)

I think Smitty was jealous and thought of a way to have you mess up something in your bench… ;-)

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

View bhog's profile


2238 posts in 4148 days

#15 posted 11-10-2012 11:36 PM

Awesome Scott.Now go make some crap and get to know it…. LOL.

-- I don't drive a Prius.

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