Edward’s Kids’ Workbench

Viewer Project - By Edward Willems from Bratislava, Slovakia, Europe
Added on September 17, 2012

Design and production process:
-starting from a basic design in plywood, found on Finewoodworking, I customized the sizes, changed the materials and added plenty of features.
-hand drawing on scale 1/1 in pencil
-3D design in Sketchup
-turning the pieces for the vice (done by local turner) and adding the in and outside thread with a simple device found on www.mehr-als-werkzeug.de /
-planing and thicknessing the beech wood
-cutting the dovetails with Japanese Z-saws and Narex chisels (Czech brand)
Legs have a complex cut-out joint to the bench top, as the work vices need space to slide and turn without obstruction.
-double groove for making it possible to slide the drawer to both sides of the bench and have a stop (the drawer can not fall out). Drawer opens max. 120mm both sides for safety reasons so the bench cannot tip over when a child steps or hangs on the drawer nor will the drawer or slider crack.
There is 140mm gap between under side top of the bench top and the top side of the drawer. It is always easy to access tools and the fast hold will not hit into the drawer.
-legs are extendable but the extensions are not ready yet…something my son can help me with when he is a bit taller :)

Design specifications:
-2 work vices in beech wood, can be mounted for left or right handed
vices are placed on the short sides, to have more stability and less shaking during cutting–vices’ thread diameter 30mm
-holes in bench top for wooden bench dogs (19mm) and iron fast holds (18mm). Holes are tapered from 19mm top to 18mm down
-bench top 80mm thick solid wood
-legs under 7° angle for more stability
-all connections are hand dovetailed: corner bench top, ruler and stretchers, half blind dovetails on drawer
-size: Height 600mm, Length top 800mm, Width 360mm
-finishing: fine sanding P240 and bee wax finish applied with a cloth

Every single piece is in local Slovakian solid beech wood. Beech is relatively cheap: cca 500€/m3

Cradle to cradle design:
I think this is a nice example of C2C design .

It is entirely recyclable, will probably have a long live span and maybe some more fantastic C2C furniture will be produced on it in the future! The hand work and complexity of the joints made it a long term project (+-150 hours spread over 3 months), but the next bench will be quicker!

This was probably my first real solid wood design and production with love for loved ones :) More pics and precise sketchup drawings are available.


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