The vise installations meant that the bench was nearly complete. I did some other minor preparation, such as plowing the grooves for the (as of yet nonexistant) sliding deadman and sawing the legs to length, and then I was ready to assemble. I’d never actually assembled the bench, and for a while, I wasn’t really sure how I’d do it. Thinking about it made my arms hurt.
Thankfully, I came to my senses at some point, and when I was ready, I set out two 2x4s to support the benchtop. With the help of SWMBO, I put the top upside-down on these boards:
Then I was able to put all of the legs and stretchers in for the first time. Everything fit perfectly:
Getting the bench right-side-up simply involved turning the bench on its side (there’s another board underneath the leg here to protect the roller bracket):
And one final lift to get it on its legs for the first time.
Next, I installed and fine-tuned the chops of the leg and tail vises. The description of that is in those preceding posts (meaning that, yes, I was done with this business before I posted those). It was fun to use the new bench for finishing itself! However, there was one little minor vise item that I hadn’t done, and that was to make a handle for the parallel guide pin. I’d considered making this completely spartan (basically, just a block of wood with the pin in it), but then I noticed that I had just enough wood in what remained of the piece of cherry that I’d used for the roller brackets, and made a really quick-and-dirty handle with my saw rasp:
Finally, I sawed off the uneven ends of the bench and it was done:
The front view, somewhat encumbered by the lack of space in the shop:
There are a few minor things left to do, such as the sliding deadman, the shelf, and maybe a tool rack. I can do those at my leisure.
Thanks again to Bill K. (who supplied the douglas-fir) and everyone else who helped me with this. Now it’s time to get back to making furniture.
- Dimensions: 72″ long, 18″ deep, 30″ high.
- Profiles: Top: 3.5″ thick. Legs: 3.5″x5″. Stretchers: 3.5″x6″ (approx).
- Wood: Old-growth douglas-fir (frame, most of top), beech (front of top, leg vise), yellow birch (parallel guide), cherry (roller brackets, parallel guide pin handle).
- Vises: Benchcrafted Glide leg vise, Lee Valley/Veritas quick-release tail vise.
- Knockdown construction: Captured-nut joints for legs/stretchers, angled (unglued) mortise-and-tenon joints for legs-to-top.
- Built entirely by hand except for some lameness mentioned in the leg vise post.
- Weight: A lot.