Workbench - mishmash of types.

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Project by hickeymad posted 03-22-2011 07:02 AM 5042 views 15 times favorited 21 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Mahogany base with plywood bottom shelf. Ash top edged with purpleheart (because of it’s hardness). Veritas twin-screw vise and shoulder vise. Hand cut all of the mortises and tenons. Resorted to a power drill for the bench holes. Realized once I was done that I’d gotten carried away with the holes – dang it! Still a great user. Glad I can move on to real furniture – but I’m afraid I’ll scratch my bench!
Design was my own after digesting all the usual web content as well as books like Schwartz’s. Legs are flush to top along the side with the shoulder vise so that large panels may be clamped. Wanted a shoulder vise for the extra surface it provides as well as for dovetailing by hand and clamping long boards lengthwise. All in all I’m pretty proud of this bench and can’t wait to see what I can build with it!
Second to last photo is bench in-progress as well as some of the tools I used and my own shop drawings.

21 comments so far

View rkoorman's profile


381 posts in 3426 days

#1 posted 03-22-2011 07:26 AM

I like it!! It’s looks solid and the purpleheart makes the bench pop out!!


View murch's profile


1380 posts in 3226 days

#2 posted 03-22-2011 11:08 AM

Great job. As you say, looks almost too good to use. This time next year it will be well settled in with plenty
of stains and scratches to give it character.
Hope you do great work on it. It’ll last a life time.


-- A family man has photos in his wallet where his money used to be.

View tenontim's profile


2131 posts in 4346 days

#3 posted 03-22-2011 01:25 PM

Very nice bench. That’s one of the more substantial shoulder vises that I’ve seen. This should give you a life time of use, if you can get past worrying about scratching it. Thanks for the post.

View jcees's profile


1078 posts in 4401 days

#4 posted 03-22-2011 02:05 PM

Lovely bench. Sweet execution. Bravo.


-- When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world. -- John Muir

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3717 days

#5 posted 03-22-2011 03:02 PM

don´t care about the holes , you will see that in time you will bee glad you have made them
they will bee handy to have when you glue up panels
the way you have build the bench with a shoulder vice and the endvice and a sliding jack
I think you are pretty the dreambench for many people , the only different I can I wuold change a little
is the length if I had to build it

congrat´s with the build of a beautyfull bench :-)

take care

View Rob W's profile

Rob W

434 posts in 4138 days

#6 posted 03-22-2011 03:28 PM

Very nice

-- Rob — I've cut it off twice and it's still too short!,

View SteviePete's profile


226 posts in 3905 days

#7 posted 03-22-2011 04:10 PM

It will be fun rearranging your shop for the new mistress. Great looking project. Enjoy it.

-- Steve, 'Sconie Great White North

View JPNpro's profile


39 posts in 3366 days

#8 posted 03-22-2011 04:43 PM

You did a nice job, the various woods give it character. Be careful with sharp chisels! (I bought a large Sjobergs workbench and a couple of months after I got it..whoops 6” gouge out of the top when I was carving something.)

-- [email protected]

View Bertha's profile


13569 posts in 3295 days

#9 posted 03-22-2011 04:55 PM

It’s absolutely spectacular and that’s some thick purpleheart stock! You won’t be dinging the corners on that thing anytime soon. I think the dog holes are completely appropriate! You can either drill them now or with every project that just…can’t….quite…reach. Might as well do it while the drill’s warmed up. I’ve been studying the benches for a couple of years now & I think I’m just about ready to start collecting lumber. Like yours, mine will have a massive shoulder for the same reasons. Deadman check. I’d like a wagon as well, I think. Excellent!

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View bobthebuilderinmichigan's profile


130 posts in 3633 days

#10 posted 03-22-2011 06:49 PM

Fantastic! Someday I will tackle something like this. I think the use of ash makes a lot of sense. It is relatively hard and very cost effective, at lieast it is here in Michigan right now. I’m sure you will get decades of use out of it.

-- Bobthebuilderinmichigan

View Will Mego's profile

Will Mego

307 posts in 4314 days

#11 posted 03-22-2011 11:45 PM

very nice! The purpleheart is a nice touch, congrats on a fine bench.

-- "That which has in itself the greatest use, possesses the greatest beauty." -

View kcrandy's profile


285 posts in 4034 days

#12 posted 03-23-2011 02:40 AM

Mishmash is the best mash.

-- Caulk and paint are a poor carpenter's best friends

View Matt Stauffer's profile

Matt Stauffer

110 posts in 3367 days

#13 posted 03-23-2011 07:12 AM

Very nice bench. Looks beautiful with the purpleheart trim.

-- Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. ~ John 5:24

View steliart's profile


2895 posts in 3290 days

#14 posted 03-23-2011 04:36 PM

very cool workbench

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions !!!

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 4275 days

#15 posted 03-24-2011 05:36 AM

Nice looking workbench.

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