White Oak Wood Working Bench

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Project by Doug posted 06-21-2009 11:13 AM 10347 views 9 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I just recently finished this work bench, I know it’s not the traditional wood to make something like this from but there’s a story behind why. I’m 55 and my father just past away a year ago, he planted this tree from a single seed, so after he passed away my mother wanted this tree removed because it was so close to the utility building and it’s root system was busting the concrete floor. It measures 28” W X 66” L X 34” H.

I wanted to make it Larger but it took alot of figuring as of how to get the structure the size it was, being the amount of wood was limited, After the wood was air dryed ( One Year )i took and stood every board vertical side by side and said ok these 4 boards will build this part, these 5 boards will build that part and so on and so on,And it took sometime to figure this out with minimal waste, I didn’t want to use any other specie of wood because this was a sentimental project if you will. But i was able to create this size of a work bench from the amout of wood im had to work with. I’m a retired machinist by trade but have always had a passion for wood working all my life, I custom made the vise parts, screw threads, nuts, guides, rods and bearing slides from brass and steel. Everything is mortised and tennoned, with box joints in the corners of the table top.
Hope you guys approve of it.

Doug Ross
Lady lake, Florida

-- Use your imagination ! you'll be suprised

20 comments so far

View Mike's profile


391 posts in 4125 days

#1 posted 06-21-2009 12:04 PM

Looks good to me.

Good size, like the vise.

In fact you might list the vise materials and sell the plans for it.

-- Measure once cut twice....oh wait....ooops.

View JimBuchanan's profile


27 posts in 3857 days

#2 posted 06-21-2009 01:52 PM

Great story and a beautiful bench.

-- Jim

View stefang's profile


16730 posts in 3842 days

#3 posted 06-21-2009 01:56 PM

That’s a fine job you did there Doug. Our benches tend to be near and dear to us anyway, but yours will be even more so with it’s connection to your father. I think you were smart to make it so you could disassemble it when you wanted.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Splinterman's profile


23074 posts in 3869 days

#4 posted 06-21-2009 02:12 PM

Hey Doug,
I think your Dad would be very happy and proud of your fine effort….well done.

View patron's profile


13654 posts in 3849 days

#5 posted 06-21-2009 03:02 PM

realy well done , doug !
i think some forget that we do what we can with what we got .
it’s nice to get that perfect wood for that perfect piece ,
but you did it with some wood that was from your dad , and it helped your mom , and it gives you something that
keeps the connection going ! and i bet your kids will do this also .

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View cabinetmaster's profile


10874 posts in 4066 days

#6 posted 06-21-2009 03:05 PM

Great story and a great looking workbench. Your dad would be proud of you on this Father’s Day.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View CharlieM1958's profile


16284 posts in 4726 days

#7 posted 06-21-2009 03:45 PM

Beautiful bench, Doug.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View a1Jim's profile


117722 posts in 4085 days

#8 posted 06-21-2009 04:02 PM

Hey Doug
Very well done plus the use of the special wood great bench.

View PineInTheAsh's profile


404 posts in 3776 days

#9 posted 06-21-2009 04:06 PM

A perfect story on this Father’s Day.

Doug, you did a fabulous job!

As Mike suggested above you should list details on the vise. In fact, I would beg to you to tell us more. I would safely say your vise is among the finest, most unique I’ve ever seen. As your post has a chance to be seen by additional LumberJocks they too will ask about the wonderful vise.

You obviously called on your years as a skilled master machinist in creating, not only a functional working tool, but an exquisite thing of beauty.

My genuine thanks for a wonderful story and a superb project.


View John Stegall's profile

John Stegall

528 posts in 4024 days

#10 posted 06-21-2009 04:13 PM

I agree that it is a terrific looking bench and I too have had workbenches that were made from what I had not what I desired. They certainly got the job done and my one maple workbench was no better (or worse) than my red oak bench.
It is good that it has a link to your dad.

-- jstegall

View douginaz's profile


220 posts in 4510 days

#11 posted 06-21-2009 07:02 PM

Outstanding tribute to your Father and a nice piece of craftsmanship. I can appreciate the time and trouble you took to assign the boards to specific jobs and I think you did an excellent job of it. Well Done!
Doug in AZ.

-- If you need craft books - please visit our small business at

View blackcherry's profile


3343 posts in 4331 days

#12 posted 06-21-2009 07:29 PM

Priceless story and a great heirloom to pass along to family members…The bench look beautiful and stout. May you enjoy plenty of project with your new bench….Blkcherry

View BTKS's profile


1989 posts in 3972 days

#13 posted 06-21-2009 08:20 PM

Fabulous story and great job, keep up the good work, both in wood and metal. BTKS

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

View Jeff's profile


95 posts in 3806 days

#14 posted 06-22-2009 01:43 AM

That’s a great story. You should somehow make a brass plaque or a nice scroll of some sort that tells the story so those that use it in generations to come will know how special it is and how much care went into making it from a single seed. I really wish I had access to metal working to be able to make such wonderful tools as you have with the vice. Although, working with wood is more than enough to take my time without learning a new craft. Beautiful bench.

-- - In the end, everything will be okay. If it isn't okay, it isn't the end yet.

View Karson's profile


35201 posts in 4908 days

#15 posted 06-22-2009 04:00 AM

A great memorial to your father. And on Fathers Day.

A fantastic job and a great looker.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

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