Heavy duty workbench

When I finally moved into my first place with a garage, the first project I set out to finish was a heavy duty bench that could handle any project I threw at it. I ended up deciding on a 3.5″ thick bench top at roughly 30″ deep by 6′ long. So, time to cut some 8′ planks (I had to do this with a DIY miter box, since I didn’t have a powered miter saw at the time, fun fun), and glue them together. I later put in 4 very long (~20″) support screws to provide additional strength, since I’d be installing a woodworkers vise later, which would pull away from the bench if I used it in conjunction with bench dogs to hold down work pieces.


Next, square off the overall piece, and use a jack plane to clean off the top. I used (a lot of) pocket holes to affix two more boards to the ends.


I used a hammer and chisel set to mortise out a carefully cut space for the Jorgensen woodworkers vise. I was lucky to find this at a marked down price on Amazon. It’s awesome.


Vise in place.


Now to add some 4×4 posts. These were attached with a combination of pocket holes and brackets.


Cut out and installed a bench apron, and added a Kreg powerbar/emergency-stop button. A powerbar/surge-protector unit is affixed to the wall (not shown) in series with this accessory. If for some reason I need both hands where they are and I have to kill the power, I can just hit this thing with my knee. I also installed a magnetic contact from Grizzly Industrial so that if the power goes out briefly, it stays out until I manually reset the device. I’ll later contract out an electrician (need permits and licensed/bonded professionals for that in my strata, no DIY electrical work permitted) to install a secondary set of breakers for power to the garage with a key to enable them, so that none of the power tools can run in the garage without me being present.


Installed a heavy duty aluminum peg board and the drill press…


All done. I later created a set of jigs for various power tools such as the miter saw, with bench dogs and clamps affixed to them, so I can use the jigs and vise to rapidly swap out tools, and secure them reliably when I need them. Considering this maybe cost about $50.00 worth of wood, glue, and screws, and can be done with just a power drill, saw plus miter box, and a Kreg jig, not bad at all. The apron was temporarily removed (not shown below) so I could add some more safeguards and outlets and re-attached it.