English-Style Workbench

  • Advertise with us
Project by PittsburghTim posted 07-22-2012 05:34 PM 13214 views 9 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is my completed (almost) English style woodworking bench. It’s southern yellow pine with walnut dowels (Miller 2X) finished with boiled linseed oil. The top is 2.5 inches thick. It weighs a ton and it’s rock solid. I put virgin rubber treads (made from the soft material used under rugs to keep them from sliding on hardwood floors) under the legs so it won’t slide on the smooth floor.

I’ll have to add a leg vise and an end vise and drill a series of holes in the top and apron sections for some forged iron holdfasts. I hope no one gets in a snit because I have things to add still. I am very happy with the results and may not be able to purchase the vise hardware fo a while. For now, I will have a very solid bench for upcoming projects.

-- She asked me, "Who are you going to please with that?" I said, "Me."

11 comments so far

View Bagtown's profile


1739 posts in 4212 days

#1 posted 07-22-2012 07:42 PM

Hey Tim, looks like a great working work bench.
Is that from Paul Sellers book?

-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View PittsburghTim's profile


232 posts in 2804 days

#2 posted 07-22-2012 07:54 PM

No. I have seen some here at the lumberjocks site and in one of Roy Underhill’s books. I just purchased some 2×10s and 2×6s, planed them to a standard 1.25 inches thickness and did my best to produce a bench of that general style. The top and the one side apron are 2.5 inches thick.

Thanks fir the post.

-- She asked me, "Who are you going to please with that?" I said, "Me."

View bandit571's profile


23608 posts in 3165 days

#3 posted 07-22-2012 08:01 PM

And the next step, a leg vise, maybe???

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View Tedstor's profile


1678 posts in 3115 days

#4 posted 07-22-2012 11:17 PM

Thats a great, beastly looking bench.
Until you get around to the vises, you might consider adding a jam-cleat and some dog holes to the front apron. Then add a bench stop and some dog holes in the top. These are good features to have with or without vises. Used alone, or in conjunction with some F-clamps, a bench like that offers an infinite number of clamping options. Minimal cost and time.
Like this:

View PittsburghTim's profile


232 posts in 2804 days

#5 posted 07-22-2012 11:37 PM

Tedstor, you read my mind. I ordered a 3/4 inch brad point bit (the local Rockler store only had a Chinese one and I refuse to buy that stuff if at all possible) and plan to place a series of holes in the front apron and in the top. I plan to make two simple jigs so they line up and are attractive. I love the simplicity of holdfasts and and can use bench dogs once the end vise is installed. I plan on using a Lake Erie Leg Vise and Veritas twin screw on the one end. They will be added in time. Thanks for the friendly comment.


-- She asked me, "Who are you going to please with that?" I said, "Me."

View RGtools's profile


3372 posts in 3136 days

#6 posted 07-23-2012 04:01 PM

That looks rock solid. I like your idea on the rubber feet. I look forward to seeing what you build on it.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Mauricio's profile


7163 posts in 3633 days

#7 posted 07-24-2012 07:20 PM

Sweet bench Tim!

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

View PurpLev's profile


8551 posts in 4130 days

#8 posted 07-24-2012 07:34 PM

looks great

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Brandon's profile


4152 posts in 3433 days

#9 posted 07-24-2012 07:47 PM

That’s a very nice bench, Tim. I like how you took that dimensional lumber and milled it to look very sharp. I’m sure it’ll last you a long time to come. And we’re all looking forward to more posts from you.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View corpmule's profile


57 posts in 2659 days

#10 posted 09-10-2013 10:14 PM

PittsburghTim, I just ran across this post. I noticed the Lumberjocks wet site says you originally posted it 415 days ago. So, I’m wondering, how’s that bench working out?

It looks like you used two layers of 2-by material for the top. How did you put the top together and, attach it to the base?

Has the top stayed flat?

View PittsburghTim's profile


232 posts in 2804 days

#11 posted 09-10-2013 11:30 PM

Corpmule, I have since added an end vise and a leg vise.

Overall, I am still extremely happy with its performance. It is rock-solid and yes, the top has stayed very flat. I picked up a pair of Gramercy holdfasts and made my own bench dogs. The dogs allow me to use the twin-screw end vise as a tail vise too. My only complaint about the twin-screw vise is that it takes a lot of turns to move. That being siad, the speed knob makes it ok to use. I have thought about adding some extra rows of dog holes to minimize the amount of movement needed when using it as a tail vise.

The top is two rows of 2x southern yellow pine. Each row was edge-glued and doweled and the two resulting panels were then glued. together. The apron pieces overlap the bottom layer of the top and were glued and doweled to the top from the side.

I have not experienced any warpage or cracks to date and it’s been through all seasons now. If you have any specific questions or would like some close-up pics, let me know.


-- She asked me, "Who are you going to please with that?" I said, "Me."

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics