I think there must be dozens if not hundreds of websites, blogs and magazine articles about work benches. The experts and amateurs all have opinions about what is best, or historic or cheapest or easiest etc. etc. etc. All that stuff makes good reading and I have borrowed more than a couple of their ideas over time.
One thing that I have learned from all the information available is that there is no one perfect bench, because the scope of woodworking is so vast. To say that you have the One Perfect Bench can only mean that it is perfect for the type of woodworking that you do. That link to thetoolstore.ca shows just what is out there for benches, I think that the Jaw Horse would hold my Toy Makers Bench. A boat builder is going to have a different bench from a furniture makers, from a pattern maker, from a model maker, or from a do everything handy man.
I seem always to be making something small for the Grandkids or am making other small projects, example, tea boxes. I do lots of whittling and woodcarving and small scale wood work now and I needed a bench/work area to make those tasks easier
I have two serious work benches, both sturdy and both too low for this type of work of small scale work. Big benches have big vises, and are not at the correct focal length,
So I developed my “Toy Makers Bench”
This bench is actually an 8 by 10 inch work surface that clamps solidly into my machinist vise on my workbench. The little cleat on the top offers a place to hold small pieces of wood or plastic while cutting, I can also clamp to this work surface if need be. On the bottom is a bigger cleat that is screwed and glued on the work surface to make it stable and solid.
Working on this bench/table uses different tools than working on big things. These are some of the small tools that have found their way into my “ toy making ” kit.
When I mix them in with various knives and chisels I am able to make silly little projects that give me pleasure and don’t take up tonnes of spa