My New Workbench #4: Finishing the Base and Installing the Vice

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Blog entry by mramseyISU posted 08-05-2015 04:21 PM 1943 reads 1 time favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Chopping the Leg Mortises Part 4 of My New Workbench series Part 5: The Home Stretch »

Ok so I’m getting behind on this but I’ve been working away at the bench I swear.

After I got the main mortise and tenons done for attaching the top to the legs I moved on to getting the stretchers done. The legs don’t fit on my little benchtop drill press so I’m chopping mortises again. I might be getting good at this before I’m done. I had already cut the stretchers and I found a nice screw-up. The long stretchers were the correct length but I took a 1/4” too much material away when I cut them on my table saw.

As an old boss of mine used to say that’s not a screw-up it’s an opportunity. So after asking for some advise from the Unplugged Group I’m in on Facebook I decided to do an inlay or sorts. I had some nice walnut laying around and that did the trick.

That’s a case of having a screw-up end up better than the original plan I think. With that sorted out I got the bottom squared and glued up. After the dry fit I’d done I was pretty comfortable when I got started but nothing will put the fear of god in you like having a bunch of glue joints that need done in a hurry. In the end I wasn’t too bad.

While that was drying I went to work on the vise. I’d already glued up some chops a few days prior so all that was left was to start poking holes in them for mounting everything. I had a Veritas twin screw vise on the old bench and I took it off to re-install on the new one. The parts for this thing ended up being massive. I started out with the mounts for the screws on the bench. The vise is going to straddle one of the legs to I had two chops to make with 4 holes in each; two holes for the lag bolts, one for the screw and one for the dowel pin that keeps the work off the screws.

The lag bolts I used were pretty long too. I ended up using 1/4” x 4.5” lag bolts, two in each side of the vice. Then I glued the chops down before tightening the lag bolts.

From there I drilled matching holes on the front vise chop and installed it. I wish I would have taken a couple more pictures of the install. I was in a hurry and didn’t have time. This vise takes time to install but it’s not hard, just a lot of steps to get it right.

Once I got the chain on and the cover on it was time to flip it over. I even managed it by myself somehow.

Finally 3 weeks after I got it flipped over I had time to pull the old bench out and put it where it was going.

Still need to build the shelf for the bottom. Planning on some more white oak and doing a tongue and groove on it.

-- Trust me I'm an engineer.

2 comments so far

View Notw's profile


740 posts in 2356 days

#1 posted 08-05-2015 06:16 PM

Very nice looking bench, looks like it should serve you well for a lifetime.

View Hammerthumb's profile


2991 posts in 2578 days

#2 posted 08-06-2015 08:43 PM

Looks good ramsey.

-- Paul, Duvall, WA

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