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  1. #1
    Veteran Member theboman's Avatar
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    Jun 2001
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    1,578
    Location
    Grayson, KY
    Tractor
    Kubota B7500 HST

    Default Work Bench

    The ol' Iron Hill Shed is still a work in progress. Started boxing in the tool room and wondered about a workbench. I'll run it all along the back or a side wall, now my questions.
    1. How high? 2. How deep?

    I was thinking 32"-36" wide and 36"-42" in height. That sound about right? BTW, 6'1" tall here (no need to let you know how purty I am...).
    Bo McCarty
    THE BO-MAN, er BO-DADDY

  2. #2
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    183
    Location
    Ladysmith, British Columbia
    Tractor
    Don't have one of my own! I work on other people's machines.

    Default Re: Work Bench

    It all depends on how you work. If you're the sole user of the benches then make them to suit you. Do you remember using a workbench somewhere that was just right? Maybe at an old job or a friend's place....drop by to say hello and bring along your tape measure.

    Let me tell you about the benches in my shop...

    One is chest height and only 16" deep. It holds a couple bench grinders, a small drill press and gets used for handwork on small stuff when I don't feel like stooping or using a chair. On account of it being so tall and narrow, it's anchored to the wall to steady it. The bench is so high that I wouldn't want it any deeper than it is; working or lifting something heavy at that height AND far from the body would be too strenuous over the course of a day.

    I have another, shorter bench that is 96" long and 48" deep that usually lives against a wall. That back 24" collects junk most of the time but when I work on something larger, like railings, I pull it into the middle of the bay and get at it from all sides; it beats working off the floor.

    I have a couple of 48" square welding tables that see the most action. They're easy to move around and where they're put depends on what's going on in the shop.

    A few general thoughts:

    When I make a wood bench that only sees light use, I don't bother making the whole bench top super skookum. I'll only re-enforce the foot of bench nearest the worker; nobody bangs on the backside of a bench.

    If you want a vise on the bench in a spot that isn't right over a leg then make a leg to install under the vise.

    Years ago, I had a small work table that was tall enough that I had the work close-up like with a watchmaker's bench except I was standing...That was one tall table but very comfortable for light work.

    An accessory I've had on benches at home was a small vee shaped notch cut out of the bench top so I could use a coping saw and provide better support for the work than just hanging it over the edge.

    Want something heavy? A piece of steel plate with pipe legs welded on is quick to make and doesn't generally move around. With a simple table like this don't go with less than 3/4" plate and 6" pipe. I've used a few over the years and loved them all...but never owned one of my own. The only problem is you need a forklift or crane to move them around.
    I assert that the egg came before the chicken: Dinosaurs were laying eggs long before chickens evolved.

    madwelder.wordpress.com

  3. #3
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    141
    Location
    Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia
    Tractor
    Kubota BX1850

    Default Re: Work Bench

    My table is 36" high, I'm 5'10", this is a good height for me.

  4. #4
    Elite Member czechsonofagun's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    3,296
    Location
    Old Dominion
    Tractor
    Kubota B1750

    Default Re: Work Bench

    Quote Originally Posted by theboman View Post
    The ol' Iron Hill Shed is still a work in progress. Started boxing in the tool room and wondered about a workbench. I'll run it all along the back or a side wall, now my questions.
    1. How high? 2. How deep?

    I was thinking 32"-36" wide and 36"-42" in height. That sound about right? BTW, 6'1" tall here (no need to let you know how purty I am...).
    I have working bench 24"x96" and 30" high for dirty work and 4'x8' assembly table 4' high for clean(er) work.
    For laptop, coffee, writing, sketching and such I use my reloading table.
    Regards,

    Prokop


    I was put on Earth to accomplish a certain number of things. Now I'm so far behind, I'll never die!

  5. #5
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
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    17,389
    Location
    Tyler, Texas
    Tractor
    Several, all used and abused.

    Default Re: Work Bench

    I have two work benches that are next to each other. They go along one of my side walls. At the side next to my roll up door is my welding bench. It's 8ft wide and 4ft deep. It has a metal top and at it's corner is where I have my vise. My welding stuff is there and my compressor is under it. It's big enough to do most anything on it, but it's also where my clutter ends up. Next to it is where my wood bench starts. It's two feet deep. I can see where deeper might be better, but if it's clean, there's plenty of room for most anything. First thing after my metal bench is my lower area for my chop saw. The top of it's cutting deck is level with the benches on either side. Then the wood bench goes off another 8ft and is at the same height as the metal bench. This allows me to cut fairly long pieces of wood on the chop saw from either side. There are limits and sometimes it doesn't work out, but that's pretty rare. I forget the height off hand, but I like to work at things at about hip level. I also have two folding tables and a fixed table that come out when I need them. I like the flexibility of having open space, or lots of work areas. It just depends on what I am doing.

    Eddie

  6. #6
    Elite Member CurlyDave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    4,396
    Location
    Grants Pass, OR
    Tractor
    JD TLB 110

    Default Re: Work Bench

    Get something clean and put it on your kitchen counter. See if that is the right height. If you want to try higher, shim it up with a small piece of plywood and some 2x lumber.

    No matter how good the lighting, how convenient the sink, and how easy to clean the surface is, do not use tools on your wife's kitchen counter. Don't ask how I know.
    40 Acres on a hill - fantastic view. JD 110 TLB, 4-n-1, 12" bucket, 18" bucket, Addington thumb, rock bucket (doubles as root grapple)

    Not only do we not understand the universe, if someone explained it to us, we would not know what he was talking about.

    Isaac Asimov

  7. #7
    Platinum Member eepete's Avatar
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    Sep 2009
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    962
    Location
    Efland, NC
    Tractor
    JD 4520, Kubota B21, JD 318

    Default Re: Work Bench

    All my benches (tractor and electronics) are 36" tall. All but one are wood, and the 2x4 front piece at that height means that all "standard" chairs with arms fit under them. Most are 4x8, one bigger and a few smaller, about 15 in all. I also have chairs with the air pistons in them. When you put them down all the way, you can do very close in work.

    I'm 6'3" slouching down to 6'1" on most days .

    Tractor/dirty benches are 4'x8' wood and 3'x8' metal, also 36" tall. Wood bench is bolted to the wall and has a big vise on it. I do far more fine work than heavy work, so don't know how well this relates to your tasks.

    I've tried taller (easy to cut off the legs) and didn't like it. "Standard" 30" tall tables are just too short for me.

    Pete
    '09 JD4520 Cab (60HP), '97 KubotaB21 TLB (21HP), MX6 rotary mower, SB1106 6' Sickle Bar, BB3272 6' box blade, GradeMaster 7' Landplane, 6' landscape rake, Woods GTC 40" tiller, PHD 9" auger, 4' x 8' chain harrow, '90 JD318 (18HP gas) with 48" MM mower, 54" front blade, 47" snowblower.
    Volunteer Firefighter.

  8. #8
    Super Member /pine's Avatar
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    Mar 2009
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    5,553

    Default Re: Work Bench

    I have always made my benches so the top hangs over the frame or face frame at least 2" so there is a "clamping edge"...

    I generally use solid lumber for a top but I usually cover it with plywood...if you only use something like 3/4" plywood...you can allow the plywood to hang over the edge then fasten a thicker member under the plywood edge for clamping surface
    Slash Pine
    blunt and succinct yet sincere...in the immortal words of Popeye..."I yam what I yam"

  9. #9
    Veteran Member crbr's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
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    1,688
    Location
    East TN
    Tractor
    Kub - 2K6, B7800

    Default Re: Work Bench

    Nice write up on the various work tables in the shed.
    ** Kubota **

    Psalms 86
    John 1:12-13


    Duraflap / Kaydenco not worth a hoot for service or products.

    "Google" is a proper noun, not a verb.

    If you mean what you say, then say what you mean, or just don't say anything

  10. #10
    Super Star Member
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    SF Bay Area-Ca Olympia WA Salzburg Austria
    Tractor
    Cat D3, Deere 110 TLB, Kubota BX23 and L3800 Craftsman Mower, Deere 350C Dozer

    Default Re: Work Bench

    I'm 6'4" and my standing assembly bench is 42" high and 30" deep along the back wall and 18" deep along one side wall for my grinder, mini drill press and tool chests.

    My sitting bench is 36" high and 30" deep

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