Thursday, March 25, 2010

Roubo Bench Build Part 4

    With the base done it was time to get the top ready and fit.  Looking back at the last picture you will notice that there are tenons at the top of each leg.  I put the top on my workstation upside down and clamped it with the appropriate spacers in between each segment. Remembering that I wanted the front face of the top to be flush with the front face of the legs, was the determining restraint for the space between the slabs.  Next I positioned the base on top of the top and marked out the location for the leg tenons.

The drill press hogged out most of the waste, and the mortises were cleaned up using a router with a tall straight bit and some chiseling to square the corners.


It took a bit of fettling, but I finally got the top fitted using a file to slim the the leg tenons.  The light at the end of tunnel was finally beginning to show.  I grabbed the quick action vise I had been previously using as a face vise, and started marking out the mortise for the rear jaw. A router and straight edge are your friend here. Take your time and make multiple passes.  

You will notice a spacer block to lower the vise and keep more meat near the top edge of the benchtop slab.  This is an Anant copy of the original Record 52 1/2 ED, and is a passable iron vise.

I also left some space for a cork lining of the rear jaw to counter act some marring that would occur on a metal surface.  Heavy weight tooling leather is a better option but this was on hand.

I finished up by drilling 2 rows of dog holes in the front slab:

These are 6" on center (2 3/8" from the edge) on the left and go down to 3" near the end vise.  Do you need this many dog holes? Thinking back on it prolly not, but getting them dead square with no tear-out in the bottom is a many step process I did not care to do again, so we will see if I swiss cheesed the top or its was just right.

You will notice some aluminum angle on the left in the photo.  Schwarz has mentioned using these as winding sticks, so I thought for 6 bucks for a pair I would keep some around for the upcoming flattening.

It is starting to look like a bench.


  1. Nabil,

    Your bench is looking great. How are you planing to fill the gap between the top sections? Tool holders? Height adjustable strip across the back edges to act like a bench hook? Solid but removable insert to use when you don't need the gap for clamping? By the way, if you are going to use a solid strip, I would consider cutting it a little taller than your bench top thickness and cutting out material so that the spacer locks onto your top stretchers and remains flush with the rest of the bench top.

  2. Nabil,

    Nice work so far there my friend. Sorry I've not commented earlier, I've got alot to follow and alot on my Plate with spring cleaning and some ideas and projects that needs to get done, so I've not been commenting nor blogging as much lol

    Can't wait to see the Finished Project, Looks great so far.