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Interlocking Plywood Workbench

2476 Views 7 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  runswithscissors
OK, I'm new to this. I'm making a new workbench. My job is such that I move often and I'm not able to always have a large enough garage to ensure I have a space for a work bench.

I'm making a work bench that's on wheels, collapsible, and somewhat lightweight.

I looked heavily into the Paulk style workbench, but I could not figure out how to attach wheels to the bottom of the plywood sawhorses the bench sits on top of without it being unstable.

My solution is a square, interlocking work bench base where the four sides of the base essentially secure themselves together by locking into grooves cut out of the other pieces. I'm looking to use probably 3/4 ply.

Does anyone have any thoughts or expertise to help a feller out?

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A sketch of what you have in mind would help.
I'll work up a sketch shortly! It may just be a hand drawn something - my sketch up skills aren't up to snuff yet. Thanks for the interest.
Here is a folding tool table I designed and built some years ago. I built it from 1/2" Baltic birch, but of course it could be built of other, perhaps heavier, material. The top requires 270 deg. hinges to work as I intended. I bent these myself from T hinges, but Rockler has a 270 deg. hinge that would work. Theirs is for 3/4" material, I believe. A remarkable feature of this table is that it is self leveling. You can even put a block under one corner, then sit on the table, and it will level itself. That only works because the top is secured at only one side. If you hold down the top in such a way that there is no diagonal movement, you lose the self leveling aspect.

It's very strong and rigid. Of course it could be sized any way you want. Fact is, it hasn't been a great miter saw table because I haven't figured out a simple way to put extensions on it for longer material. Yet I continue to use it, with makeshift extensions when needed. I may work something out that works better. By attaching wedge shaped pieces at the bottom of the legs on one end, I was able to put in an axle and a pair of wheels for convenience in moving it.

Another way to do the top while obviating the need for 270 deg. hinges would be to split the tops lengthwise and hinge it to fold up in the middle. You can get little stools at the hardware store now that are designed that way, and use exactly the same principle as this table.

Also, I used the same design, with different dimensions of course, to make a folding router table. It worked very well for this, and I did fold it up when not using it. I never bother to fold the miter saw table, but leave it where it is. Use the miter saw too much to not leave it always in place.

This is only intended to offer you some alternatives. Your "tab A into slot A" method may work as well or better.
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That is an outstanding design - I appreciate the assistance with a pretty good option, either for my work bench or for a future router table.
For a router table, of course, you couldn't use the split top. I made my own top using a couple of layers of plywood, with a hardboard surface. Formica would have been better, probably. I actually had in mind being able to have the table in a vertical position, so one could use the vertical panel raising bits with the work lying horizontal. That required an auxiliary table, of course. I did make that, but don't remember ever actually making any raised panels that way. That was a good router table, and I only sold it with the router because I bought a shaper instead.
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