Saturday, 31 August 2013

Roubo Work Bench Update.

Laminating the top was slow progress, one board at a time on each half of the top to ensure no gaps or glue lines. Lie Nielsen bench tops are glued up with a massive hydraulic clamp all in one go, sadly I only have hand clamps.
The two halves were sent through the planer for a skim cut on each side.

The test fit on the legs in the mortices went well for all four legs, snug but not too tight.

I checked the two halves squared up nicely and looked for any gaps, I didn't want to force them together. The edges needed hand planing at certain points to improve the fit.

Clamp up time, note the two clamps on the ends just to ensure things stayed level.

Normally the nut for the bench screw is let into the rear of the leg, but seeing as I have a 2 1/2" screw tap and die, I decided to tap straight into the leg. Drilling the 2" pilot hole on the drill press.

This is die for the bench screw which was taken from my stock.

Here I am tapping the thread which needs a fair bit of force!

The finished thread and the test fit below. A little tight but that will soon loosen up with use.

I made the garter a snug fit and used Lignum Vitae for its oily, hard wearing properties.

Shaping the vice chop could be done with a forstner bit but I prefer to use my French curves for a nice sweeping curve. These were an antique set bought from E Bay and get plenty of use.

I decided to use a heavier pin than in the past, 16 mm (5/8") in brass. The holes were spaced at 10 mm (3/8") intervals and were staggered. I have some more benches to make so I made up a thick board ready to band saw down to size.

The peg board was attached with a through mortice and tenon and like the legs this was a flared mortice with carefully matched wedges.

The side frames were glued up with twin Dominoes which are plenty strong enough. The clamp half way up, was to fine adjust the slightly flared legs so that it was a perfect fit for the mortices in the top.
The legs were pre drilled on the drill press to accept the long stretchers which will be cut to length after the legs have been attached to the top. The underside of the top was oiled before assembly, it's much easier to do beforehand.
Tomorrow we'll see if it all fits!


  1. Top notch work mate.

    "I have some more benches to make so I made up a thick board ready to band saw down to size." Are these your regular benches or are people queuing up for roubos?

  2. These are for my regular benches, the Roubo is a one off, I don't thunk my back could take the strain of making any more!

  3. Nice looking bench. Where do you get a wood tap that size? I use a 50/50 mix of linseed oil and mineral spirits as a lubricant when I tap and cut wood treads. It must have been hard tapping such a large diameter.

  4. The tap came from Dieter Schmid in Germany, not cheap! I soak the parts in a raw linseed oil bath for a week before cutting the threads, but the leg was too big for the bath. I'm not sure it makes much difference, it's hard work in both!

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  6. Thanks David to let us know about all the work done behind making this bench. Beautiful finishing.

    Telescopic Ladders

  7. Please tell me where to get a tap and die like that.