My version of the Short Block V8 bench

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Project by isotope posted 04-28-2015 02:32 PM 3836 views 7 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is my version of the Short Block V8 workbench. Before going any further I would like to give many thanks to Shipwright for not only designing a very sturdy and useful bench and sharing the plans with the LJ community, but also for being extremely willing to help answer questions and provide advice. He was also generous enough to send me a marquetry V8 logo! How cool is that? It’s awesome and I love it! Thank you.

For more information on the design of the bench and instructions on how to build one, please refer to Shipwright’s posts.

My story: I actually built 90% of this bench over a year ago, but house renovations and a new baby girl caused me to put the build on hold for a while. Though unfinished, the bench, with its wagon vise, still proved very handy. I just now finished the leg vise along with the “wrapping” (a little lipstick never hurts).

The bench was made out of 2 sheets of poplar plywood from the orange box store. The vises, along with the front facing boards were made out of some red oak that I had on hand. I used a stain called black cherry for the bench. It came out more purple than red, not like I was expecting at all. I didn’t like it at first, but it’s growing on me. I sealed it with some water-based poly. The oak was finished with Watco Danish oil.

I only made one significant change to the design. I modified the right front leg to accept a board which could be used as a deadman (eventhough I’ve never even used one). The most difficulty I encountered was making the mortises in the thick oak of the leg chop. First, I made a layout error and cut the hole too big, and needed to glue in a block. Second, my jigsaw blade wandered a lot on the underside of the cut, so the walls aren’t very straight. Nothing that will significantly affect use, but I think I should have explored other methods. Pre-drilling out most of the mortise, like Shipwright did, definitely would have helped (I should have read his instructions more carefully).

Overall, I have to say I love the bench. The wedge powered vises give it a lot of character and enable many clamping options that I’ve never had before. The marquetry logo is pure icing on the cake!

Thanks for looking and sharing.

9 comments so far

View ClaudeF's profile


997 posts in 2222 days

#1 posted 04-28-2015 06:48 PM

Nice looking bench!



View Northwest29's profile


1681 posts in 3005 days

#2 posted 04-28-2015 08:32 PM

A very good looking bench and it should last you quite a while. You did a fine job.

-- Ron, Eugene, OR, "Curiosity is a terrible thing to waste."

View Ken90712's profile


17752 posts in 3703 days

#3 posted 04-29-2015 08:46 AM


-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View AESamuel's profile


98 posts in 1737 days

#4 posted 04-29-2015 10:38 AM

Never seen a vice like that before, is that a pin system in the back? Old fashioned quick release!

Given me some inspiration as I will be building a similar sized bench in the future.

View shipwright's profile


8381 posts in 3312 days

#5 posted 04-29-2015 01:08 PM

Very nice work my friend. Thanks for the mention.You get all the credit for this fine build but I get to smile :-)

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View isotope's profile


177 posts in 2139 days

#6 posted 04-29-2015 01:44 PM

Thank you all for the comments. Very much appreciated.
And glad that the master approves of the bench!

AESamuel: yes, there are 2 wooden dowels/pins used in the leg vice. One to keep the “log” from sliding forward and the other to keep the bottom of the leg from pivoting backwards, as you drive the wedge. If that makes any sense. More info in Shipwrights blog posts.

View Tim Royal 's profile

Tim Royal

314 posts in 2001 days

#7 posted 04-29-2015 04:10 PM

Great work… currently working on my own “V8”, unfortunately I have no room for a standalone bench. Wish I could use his plans! This bench will serve you extremely well!

-- -Tim Royal -"Pride makes us artificial and humility makes us real." -Thomas Merton

View siavosh's profile


674 posts in 2385 days

#8 posted 04-30-2015 01:45 AM

Great looking bench! What kind of work do you plan on building on it?

-- -- Discover the most interesting woodworking blogs from around the world

View isotope's profile


177 posts in 2139 days

#9 posted 04-30-2015 01:27 PM

Thanks again everyone.
Siavosh, you ask a good question. I built the bench mainly because I wanted a sturdy bench with vises for clamping work pieces. I chose this design because I didn’t want to buy vises, which can be expensive, and because it was interesting/different. I’ve started learning how to use hand planes, and the wagon vise is great for this, for small or medium sized pieces. The bench top is only 4’ long, so it does have some limitations. I’m planning to make a few picture frames, whenever I get the chance to “play”.

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