Harbor Freight 60" Workbench

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Review by JohnGreco posted 03-21-2010 04:42 PM 48315 views 0 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Harbor Freight 60" Workbench No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I saw this workbench on sale from Harbor Freight and figured at the price of $159, it was worth a shot.

Note- At the time of writing this, the bench is on sale further, costing just $129.

For the price I paid, I think it was pretty good, but for the even lower sale price you can’t go wrong. The top is Oak, about 1” thick with a thicker edge (so the edge you see in the picture isn’t the thickness of the entire table). It comes with an end vise (mounted to the right, you don’t get to choose which side it mounts to), 4 felt lined MDF drawers (each drawer is 21”w x 12 3/4”d x 3”h) and 1 MDF shelf. The legs appear to be Oak stained Pine, and the table top has 16 dog holes drilled for use with the 4 wooden pegs and 4 metal bench dogs.

Putting it together I had a few alignment issues with screws/bolts not lining up exactly, but nothing too bad. By myself it took about an hour and a half to put together, but mostly because I chose to use a hand held screwdriver assembling the drawers rather than my power drill. I just didn’t want to over tighten and ruin the drawer since the MDF is fairly thin.

The drawers ride on metal slides and are pretty smooth. A little too smooth for me, in fact. My shop is in my garage, and with the drawers facing the garage doors, vibrations from working on the bench have the drawers slowly opening from the slight down-grade pitch. If you have a similar set up, plan to either shim the legs or flip the bench with the drawers facing up-grade.

The bench has a 250 pound capacity, but I suspect you could reinforce it a bit and increase that limit.

The box was pretty beat up when it was delivered to me (via FedEx). I was expecting to have to call for several replacements, but the packing was really done well. Nothing inside was damaged at all.

Overall, you can’t go wrong for the price. I would have given it 5 stars if I didn’t feel the picture was misleading about the table top thickness.

-- John

View JohnGreco's profile


284 posts in 4218 days

14 comments so far

View DragonLady's profile


298 posts in 4170 days

#1 posted 03-21-2010 06:31 PM

the base looks a little skimpy for any heavy hand tool work. Have you tried planing on it? It looks like it would wobble like crazy.

But then, I’m biased. making my own workbench, and the legs are a massive 4.5×5 :)

-- A woman's work is never done-but power tools help!

View dustbunny's profile


1149 posts in 4458 days

#2 posted 03-21-2010 06:48 PM

I have this bench, the base is different than the one pictured. It is heavy and solid, there is NO wobble.
The only thing I do not like about the bench is the dog holes. The two top drawers are open underneath the holes which are through the top. The top drawers fill with saw dust and stuff that falls through the holes.
My intention is to have a dust tray under the top and above the drawers, pull out and sweep off.
Other than that this is a good work station, and I have contemplated getting another one.

Thanks for the review John.


-- Imagination rules the world. ~ Napoleon Bonaparte ~

View JohnGreco's profile


284 posts in 4218 days

#3 posted 03-21-2010 07:18 PM

It’s fairly sturdy, but a bit on the narrow side (only about 20” wide). It’s good for general purpose, I’d say more than just as a catch-all, though. I make toys and fiber tools, so it suits my needs well. Your mileage may vary :)

-- John

View velo_tom's profile


123 posts in 4179 days

#4 posted 03-21-2010 07:36 PM

I bought this bench for $129. There was a coupon in a woodworking magazine that I used to get the special price. I bought the bench as a temporary till I build my permanent shop. I’ve done a fair amount of hand planing with it and initially had problems with is sliding on the floor. I bracketed it with concrete screws to the basement floor figuring I can patch them later if I move the table. The brackets hold the table quite stable now.

There are other minor problems with the bench such as the dog holes allowing dust into the drawers but I just put some duct tape underneath them to plug it up. Covered the adhesive so chips wouldn’t stick and vacuum them out when needed. The screws for assembling it we so cheep I was twisting off the heads by hand with a screwdriver so started using drywall screws instead.

It’s certainly not my dream bench but at least got me up and running at a low price so in general I’m quite glad I bought it.

-- There's no such thing as mistakes, just design changes.

View b2rtch's profile


4921 posts in 4212 days

#5 posted 03-21-2010 08:52 PM

I have the same bench for several years, and as with all other HF tools I have , I am happy with it.
On mine the drawers also open by themselves and the top cracked because I live in Utah and the weather is extremely dry, if I were living by the sea most likely I would not have had the problem.
Someday I shall build myslef a sturdier and heavier bench but for right now it help me to get by.

-- Bert

View WoodyWoodWrecker's profile


171 posts in 4415 days

#6 posted 03-21-2010 10:07 PM

Not being able to see the backs of the drawer spaces, would it be possible to use magnets to keep the drawers from opening? I ask this because I have considered on several occasions buying this.

-- You always have tomorrow to stop procrastinating.

View NormG's profile


6507 posts in 4167 days

#7 posted 03-22-2010 04:34 AM

I have been looking at this bench, was about to buy when the wife let me purchase a new floor TS. I do a fair amount of hand planing, scraping and sanding at times. I need a steady table and was hoping I could mount a vice to the front. Thanks for the reviews.

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View ElmoSr's profile


243 posts in 4190 days

#8 posted 03-22-2010 01:51 PM

well i looked and studied and i bought,,now waiting for delivery

-- ElmoSr,Ga. Life is Hard by the Yard,,,But a Cinch by the Inch

View JohnGreco's profile


284 posts in 4218 days

#9 posted 03-22-2010 07:22 PM

After some phone issues of being disconnected (3x, once while the customer service rep was in mid-sentence) I was able to get the credit today for the difference. So at $129 the 60” bench is the same price as their 48” bench.

-- John

View ElmoSr's profile


243 posts in 4190 days

#10 posted 04-01-2010 03:29 PM

OK the bench arrived yesterday swet it up without difficulty, it will work ok, couldnt have built it for the 129$ i paid, not sure how i will address the dog holes going into the drawers, might just put another bottom on it, also i will have to put a stretcher across bottom shelf to keep rails from separating and shelf falling it is very sturdy but over all i am pleased.

-- ElmoSr,Ga. Life is Hard by the Yard,,,But a Cinch by the Inch

View lashing's profile


111 posts in 3984 days

#11 posted 09-05-2010 02:15 AM

I bought two of these. They do wobble. The one in the store was rock solid. For this price though – its really unbeatable. I needed some bench space for multiple things on the go and while I could build a better, studier bench for less $ in material – the time it takes is another thing.

View Jenine's profile


148 posts in 2886 days

#12 posted 11-19-2015 11:55 PM

Just put this together as well, and made a few minor modifications to fix a few problems. I 100% agree if you are on a tight budget, this bench CAN’T BE BEAT. It’s very sturdy, no movement during some test run planing.

Mine looks like this (some look very different):

I added BIG rubber, screw on pads to the bottom to give it some added sticking power to the concrete floor. I also bought some concrete anchors and if it moves around, I’ll bolt it down. It will definitely work until I can build my own (sometime after I send my now 5 year old through college).

Giant feet…

Added a second vise to the left side (isn’t visible from the photo). Love that radial head drill press…adjusted the head WAY out front and it made drilling out a partially pre-assembled bench easy peasy ;)

The “dog hole dumping into drawers issue” was an easy fix! Get plastic jars made for face cream in the dollar area at target, they are small and come in a pack of three for airplane travel. Dill a 3/4” hole into the center of the lid. Apply epoxy to the remaining lid surface area, center under dog hole and clamp. To empty, just unscrew the jar from the underside and dump it out ;) they are very shallow, so they don’t interfere with the drawer. I couldn’t take a photo after they were in because it’s too dark (oops), but this is what the jars look like:

Finally, everyone I saying the instructions are poor and translated badly. I thought they were GREAT. Clearly nobody has ever assembled anything from Target…spent more time assembling a toy shelf from there than this!

-- - Montana sucks. Tell your friends.

View MontanaBob's profile


874 posts in 3847 days

#13 posted 11-26-2015 05:40 PM

That looks like a great buy…and I need one so bad!!!.... Now if I can get the wife to agree to leave the car out of the garage. I was reading this to wife while writing and all I heard was a No…...LOL…Bob

View hahcutt's profile


1 post in 1149 days

#14 posted 06-10-2018 02:25 PM

I bought this bench from Harbor freight. It has some good points but it has some fatal flaws. It comes down to “you get what you paid for”. Problem number one. There are 62 #8 wood screws. They are too short for almost every use. Even though this bench, when assembled seems sturdy, an eight year old could shake it apart because the screws are too short. Second problem : I had one drawer that would not go in. Then I discovered that none of the drawers would come out. Th plastic drawer releases will nor release the drawers. Third problem : the bench is very light. To be of any use for any work requiring pushing and pulling, the table will need to be secured to the floor. In hindsight, I would spend this money on a sturdy table.

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