Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Hand Saw Bench ll

  The other day I finished assembling my Hand Saw Bench in the style of Tom Fidgen.

  The Unplugged Woodshop

    I confess to not making it totally with hand tool. I prepared the poplar with my table saw and planer as well as did many of the cuts with my sliding mitre saw.  

  My design is a modification of Tom's plan too. The legs are a bit heavier than the original plan as are the stretchers, why?, 'cause I wood slabs I started with were a bit big, but not enough bigger to end up with usable wood if I had ripped them down to size.

   I also mixed my woods, the top is a spruce 2 x 6 stud while the legs and frame are poplar and the end stop is ash.  I wouldn't use spruce again, I had to fill some knot holes in the top when I came to sand the bench at the end.  Since the top is the part that is going to get cut up I'm not too concerned and one day I will replace it with a better quality wood.  The end stop is held in place by two 3/4 dowels so it can get moved out of the way easily.  Since it is a jig, shortly, it will get painted red.

  The bench is assembled with lap joinery, glue and dowels, there is nothing on the bench that can hurt my saw blades. Whenever I make a bench or work table I always avoid metal fasteners when ever I can. 

   In the original plan there is a stop that ran the length of the bench but I found I liked the stop across the end. My kneeling position seemed better on the long side rather than the short side.

  I built this bench so that I could comfortably  use my larger hand saws, I have an excellent rip saw that will cut as quickly as my band saw and an excellent cutting bow saw for cross cuts. With this saw bench in the future those saws will become a more automatic choice. I have  bench hooks  that enable work with smaller saws like my back saw that I use on my work bench, closer to eye level.  It is probably sacrilege but I plan to use this bench with my circular saw too.  To saw comfortably and and accurately I really like to to be able to get above the cut and see the line clearly, and this bench will enable that every time.  I also like to use my hand saws when the wood being cut is smaller, my plan is to retire with all my fingers.

   Something else I found today was that having a separate sawing bench meant that I could use the entire surface of my work bench for drilling, sanding, clamping and assembly with out having to leave room for sawing and trimming.  It is a very space effective way to increase working space in my shop.  The added bonus is the saw bench is the perfect height for me to sit upon and work on my lower assembly table too.


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