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Work bench smack down

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After a comment on my bench about a bench off, I thought its a great idea. There all the threads about planes, braces, powertools of your dreams, etc. How about it on benches.
Pic of your bench or one you are going to buy or build and Why its best. The topic should provide some info for the woodworking getting ready to build or buy as well as give us a place to gloat.
Plus even though I'm not building another bench, I still love looking at others.

I haven't been on in a while but I just seen a pm when i got on today. It appears the tag "smackdown" is being added to the benches shown here, so you can click here and see em all.
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Hi, my first post, can't figure out how to get photos posted. When I do I'll share photos of the bench I just about finished. It has twin leg vises. The right one has the traditional pin in the beam for easy removal if it will be in the way. The left one has a chain devise to keep the jaw parallel and it works great. Can someone give me some help with the photos? Thanks.
Just thought I'd try and post a pix again.


This is the chain vise finished and working. If I had the cross I would not be able to feed that curved piece between the screw and the beam.
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Well that didn't work. Is it really that hard to post a pix?
One more time.
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This is a great thread.
Sylvai… That vise with the curved piece has no pin to begin with, but if it did I would not need one as long as part of whatever is being clamped extends down below the screw. That counteracts the clamping forces above the screw.

Steve… I like the Zyliss vise, infect a lot aft the dimensions of my bench were chosen to accommodate that vise. I am often working out of the shop and it can hold stuff just about anywhere. It is true a lot of the accessories just stay in the box. I have several, mostly bought off eBay or Craigslist, I'll use two in tamdem to hold oars for varnishing.
Scott, they have to go somewhere.
I will be building a drawer box for storing tools with the bench but that wont happen till the fall or next winter. I am overwhelmed with work for the Nast couple of months.
I was scanning this whole thread last night and there was some talk about splayed legs on a bench. I built this about 14 years ago for working off site at different boatyards. It folds and transports easily, but is rock solid when set up. For portability it depends on clamps and a Syl is vise for work holding.

I think I've got this photo thing down thanks to all for their help.
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Let's see if I can catch up on my brief lunch time.

Mauricio…dog holes would be a nice addition, I can't remember if the wonder pups were on the market when I made this. It gets used very little lately, but I would not hesitate to drill the holes if the need arose.

Scott… That was my iPad trying to correct my spelling of Zyliss vise. Apparently if I type two l's that's what you get.

Smutty… The hinge for the center truss is offset from the front, and the two top planks are attached by a 3"x3" piece of oak. You can see them in the first photo. Those go just outside the legs and lock everything open. I was going to drill for a cross bolt but never felt the need. The once or twice I did I just threw a clamp on it.

Sylvain…yes hand planing was it's first need. I was making two 50' long rub rails for a boat. The were about 4"x5" triangular shaped and clamping that to a bunch of saw horses proved just too wobbly. So I built this and put it in the middle and it worked great. The bench is low, saw horse height so perfect for hand planing.

The leg are cut off scrap from a deck job a contractor friend was going to throw out and the top is two 2×8 I believe maranti it was cheap at the time, and I wanted something stiffer than fir. It all could be built from construction wood. The basic design that I adapted to fold was as a site built bench at a construction site. The gap between the top pieces is just wide enough to get a clamp thru.

Feel free to build or change as you see fit. I would not have shared if I didn't want that to happen. Post what you come up with.
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Sorry Smitty did not mean to miss spell your name, but the I and the u are next to each other.
Sorry Smitty the I and the u ARE right next to each other.
What I have found out with leg vises after using them for thirty years, is they can wrack if you clamp on the edge of the chop or it is overly wide, the beam on the bottom should be in line with the screw and a close fit in the leg to help minimize wracking. The taller the chop is above the screw the the less clamping force for a give screw pressure, and more flexing of the chop. The further the lower beam is from the screw the less pressure on the pin and beam/chop mortice. If the chop was 12" above the screw and the beam was 12" below the screw the force on the workpiece and the beam would be equal. I have the LN screws on my vises two are 5" wide ( to match the leg width), 6" above the screw for clamping and 18" from screw to the top of the beam. Another vise is the same except that it is 6" wide.
Mauricio.. Yes I think you would need a wider chop just to have enough wood on either side of the screw for strength and stiffness. Maybe I should start a thread just about vises and clamping. I've had to be quite creative at times and have several unique ones, homemade and old.
Yes when the chop is tilted like that it moves the centerline of the jaw to the right of the screw in a vertical plane. So even though you might be clamping a panel to the right of the screw, at bench height it is on centerline.
Ryan, with regards to the top to leg connection, keep in mind that in most cases the leg vise will be pushing all it's force on to the edge of the top. I would recommend something like a stub tenon from the leg into the top to counteract those forces. You can still use a screw as described above to hold the top down and make the top removable. I just don't think the shear strength of a screw alone is enough to resist the clamp force.
Not to derail the current discussion but I just organized my photo bucket album of my workbench build. There are captions for most photos explaining the thought process at the time. Any questions just ask. Jim
I did some testing on my leg vise today, and thought I'd share the results. The screw is from Lie-Nielsen. The gauge is set about 5" above the screw. This reading is more than needed in use based on handle torque. It can actually go higher but I'm not fond of destructive testing.

This photo is at the lower beam 18" below the screw.

This photo is 12" below the screw. I took this measurement because several people I've talked with have their beam that close.
Yes the gauge is measuring pounds per square inch. And shows what the vise is capable of. The camping area of the jaw for practical purposes is 5×5" or 25 square inches so if I was clamping a big panel that 1600 pounds works out to 64 pounds per square inch over the whole jaw. What I was also interested in sharing though was as the beam gets closer to the screw the pressure on the mortice and pin goes up. Also on at least one Shwartz bench I think he has 12" above the screw, so has PSI will be lower the further he is from the screw. Not to say that it doesn't work, just some numbers for informational purposes. You wood screw builders, make sure the nut threads fit well and there are enough of them. The pressure on the screw is even higher (I think it should be twice what the jaw shows) if I remember my physics of levers correctly.
I agree they look good to me also.
That's a nice looking bench Mauricio
I don't think they ever get done! I've been using mine for months now and I still need to chamfer the legs and put some kind of finish on it. Plus there are all the accessories like bench hooks and things. Jim
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