Removable Bench/Outfeed Table Top?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Designing Woodworking Projects forum

Forum topic by weathersfuori posted 10-12-2017 03:17 PM 723 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View weathersfuori's profile


96 posts in 1902 days

10-12-2017 03:17 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question lathe shop design workbench

I am essentially starting from scratch rebuilding my shop space after Hurricane Harvey. I work out of my garage and space is limited, so I am trying to plan things so that everything is mobile and can fit together to save space when not in use.

One thing that I didn’t really have before was a suitable workbench/assembly table like I’ve seen in many of your shops. I had a bench on one side of the shop but it was too high (long story, but there was a reason I built it that high) and had a back to it. I want something that I can put in the middle of my shop for assembly/etc. and that can be used as an outfeed table for my table saw. This is the easy part I guess.

The hard part starts with a lathe that my dad will be bringing out here to Texas sometime in the next month. The lathe belonged to my grandfather, who passed away in June. All I know about this lathe is that it is an old Foster Line from I guess the 40s or 50s from what I can find, and it is mounted to a board that is 25.5”W and 53.5” long, so it is pretty sizable. I know next to nothing about lathes, woodturning and especially old machinery, and we are busy rebuilding after this storm, so the lathe won’t see any use until I can figure out how to use it and until I have the time to try. Even then, it will probably only see occasional use at most, but it is obviously going to be pretty special to me to have and use in my shop.

So my idea is to design a workbench that would allow for storage of the lathe underneath the table surface, but which would allow me to remove the table top in order to use the lathe. Given the size of the lathe, it’s not something I will want to store and move whenever I want to use it, but then again I won’t use it often enough to give it a dedicated, open stand or table given my space restrictions. As for the workbench, it will probably be used for as an assembly and outfeed table more than anything else; I don’t need anything overly fancy.

Does anyone have something like this they could share a picture of or plans for? Does the idea seem feasible? Any help is greatly appreciated!

-- Weathersfuori, Texas,

5 replies so far

View Rich's profile


5613 posts in 1362 days

#1 posted 10-12-2017 03:46 PM

Wouldn’t putting it under a table top make it too low to use when you removed the top?

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View weathersfuori's profile


96 posts in 1902 days

#2 posted 10-12-2017 04:39 PM

Yeah that’s one of my concerns… My thought was that I’d have to sit or maybe lean back on a stool to use the lathe.

-- Weathersfuori, Texas,

View Dustin's profile


707 posts in 1513 days

#3 posted 10-12-2017 04:57 PM

Have you thought about mounting the lathe on a swing-up bed? I’m fairly certain I’ve seen some folks on here do that with their outfeed tables.

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

View weathersfuori's profile


96 posts in 1902 days

#4 posted 10-12-2017 06:51 PM

Have you thought about mounting the lathe on a swing-up bed? I m fairly certain I ve seen some folks on here do that with their outfeed tables.

- Dustin

So something that swings up on a hinge? That’s a thought. If it was attached to the outfeed/work table I’d imagine I would need some counterweight on the other side of the table.

I could perhaps do this on a wall, too, but then it wouldn’t be mobile, which I’m thinking is going to be necessary. I will probably need to wheel the lathe to the garage door opening or even outside so that chips don’t end up everywhere in my shop.

-- Weathersfuori, Texas,

View Woodknack's profile


13391 posts in 3153 days

#5 posted 10-12-2017 07:09 PM

I think a flip top bench could be in your future. You don’t want the lathe too low or it will hurt your back. Something like this:

The problem is having something relatively heavy like a lathe on one side only is going to make flipping more difficult unless you counterbalance with springs.

-- Rick M,

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

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