Work Benches DIY: Build a Sturdy Workbench (Step-by-Step)
So you want to work on homemade projects – but what good is that want if you have nowhere to do it? A sturdy work bench can be the reliable foundation you’ve been missing for all your home projects. Work benches can cost hundreds of dollars from a store. Even though buying one would be convenient, why not follow some work benches DIY instructions to get one from the most trusted craftsman you know; yourself!
A work bench can be handy in so many ways, so isn’t it about time you got yourself one? The satisfaction that will come from knowing you made it yourself will be the cherry on top of this DIY project.
Read on to follow our step-by-step guide about how to make your own.
The Benefits and Uses of a Workbench
Owning a heavy-duty work bench can come in handy every day.
It can be used as a surface for drilling, sawing, painting, gardening, and sanding. It will also support other large tools and materials that you may want to work with for another DIY project.
It can also be helpful for things like working on your bike, like changing the tire or fixing the chain. It can even be used as a regular desk in some cases.
Plus, building a DIY work bench will come with the benefit of being able to customize it to your specific needs. It’s also a fun, creative outlet for you while also being eco-friendly.
Aside from making your own DIY projects, handcrafted products also make great gifts and could even make you some money in the long run.
Whether you’ll be doing small household wares for neighbors or starting your own business selling your products, woodworking can be lucrative.
Gather Your Materials
The DIY workbenches should take anywhere between 2-4 hours. Here’s what you will need to carry out these workbench plans.
The tools you will need are a writing utensil, tape measurer, a power drill, a carpenter square, clamps, a jigsaw.
The materials you will need are a pegboard, 2 x4 inch x 8-foot lumber pieces, wafer screws, RTC2Z connectors, in-wood screws, and whichever wood you would like to use for the top surface.
You will need 13 lumber boards for the entirety of the bench.
You will also need one 24 x 48-inch piece of wood for the shelf. The kind of wood you pick just depends on what you’re looking for.
For instance, hardwood will be stronger and is easier to maintain, but it’s also more expensive. Plywood is durable enough, but you will have to layer it so it’s at least 3/4 inches thick.
For the lumber, mark and cut each one at these measurements. Make sure to label each piece so that once they are cut, you remember which is which.
For the four rails, 45 inches. For the two rear posts, 58 inches. For the four end rails,17 inches. For the one top rail, 48 inches. For the two front posts, 36 inches.
Work Benches DIY Instructions
Start by putting together your frame.
1) Take the four front and rear posts and mark them at six inches and then again at 34 3/8 inches, measure from the bottom.
2) Take one front post and slip one RTC2Z connector up to the six-inch mark. Use a clamp to hold it in place and a wafer screw to secure it. Do the same to one of the rear posts. Repeat the same process with each at the 34 3/8 inch mark.
3) Bring the front and rear posts together with the end rail posts using 1 1/4 wafer screws.
4) Repeat these same steps to finish the other side of the frame.
5) Connect the two frame sides together with the 45-inch rails pieces of wood using more wafer screws.
6) Use your jigsaw to notch your workbench top. Measure 3 1/2 inches from the back and 1 1/2 inches from the side. Place the top on top of the work bench frame and keep it in place with 1 1/4 inch wood screws.
7) Attach the top rail with 2 1/2 inch wood screws.
8) Align the pegboard with the back of the top posts so that it lines up evenly. Clamp it into position and drill together with 1 1/4 inch wood screws.
If you want to take your work bench in and out of your work area and you’d like it to be mobile, you also have the option of adding casters. Make sure to pick the right kind that will be able to bear the weight you plan to have on your bench.
Also, make sure that after you’ve attached them, your work bench is still evenly leveled once it’s standing again.
How to Make the Most of Your Work bench
There are simple and cheap ways to make your work bench as effective for you as possible.
For instance, laminate flooring makes a good, protective workbench top, and you can nail it on top of whatever wood you have already picked. It will also be easy to replace this top layer when it does eventually wear down.
You can also make the most of your pegboard and attach pegboard hooks to them to organize some of your tools.
You can hammer or drill in two nails and hang a key-hole ruler from the front of your work bench for easy access.
You can also keep vinyl tablecloths handy to place on top of your work bench when you work with wood. Especially when gluing wood pieces together, this will allow you to use it as a protective barrier between your project and your work bench.
Along those same lines, you can use a piece of hardwood as a protective layer when working on projects that might otherwise damage your work bench’s surface.
A magnetic strip is also a handy thing to keep nearby. If you’re working on a project that uses a lot of tools, especially small or easy-to-lose ones, a magnetic strip could prove useful. Attach one to the top of your work bench or to the side.
A clamp lamp is easy to install and will make your projects feel worlds easier, especially if you ever get the itch to work at night. It will also come in handy when working on something that requires extreme attention to detail.
Lastly, a vice will always come in handy. Having one attached to your bench will be helpful more times than you can count. It’s as convenient as having an extra arm to help hold things in place when you need it.
How to Take Care of Your Workbench
Tools are easy to lose. Or at least they can be if you don’t have a place for them.
Every work area should have plenty of storage space for your tools. Smart storage is the key to keeping your space organized. Investing in a toolbox or shelving unit that you can keep next to your bench will prove to be immeasurably helpful.
That way, when you’re done working, there will be a place for every tool, which means you’ll be less likely to lose them, and they’ll be less susceptible to damage from falling or exposure.
It will also do a lot, in the long run, to make sure you clean the surface of your work bench after you use it. Sawdust, dirt, and debris can accumulate easily and eventually do some damage to your work area or tools.
Similarly, make sure to immediately pick up any kind of spill. Your bench will be less likely to gather stains if you take care of these immediately. If you spill something like paint, you can test out some paint thinner on its surface to see how your wood reacts to it.
It’s also important to disinfect your work bench every once in a while. On top of the basic cleaning you will do after you use it, you should be deep cleaning it as well. How often you do this just depends on how often you use your bench and for what.
If you’re mostly sticking to basic home projects, disinfecting every couple of months is fine. If you are exposing your work area to germs or bacteria of any kind, it’s a good idea to disinfect it more often, like after every use. Better to keep it clean than let germs fester.
I’m Ready to Build My Workbench, Now What?
Now that you have gone over the steps of work benches DIY instructions, you can put together your own. You’ll be ready to tackle all the home projects you desire!
Making your work bench is just the foundation of exploring all that you can create. There are so many positive and helpful things that can come from owning one, especially one that you made yourself.
Now that you’re ready, get started by checking out Woodworking Plans’ list of essential woodworking tools that you’ll need.