New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

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dmcgreen
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New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by dmcgreen » Wed 20 May, 2020 11:57 am

Hello fellow framers,

I'd appreciate any help in a workbench to suit my workshop.

But first, let me introduce myself and thankyou to the admins for allowing me to join the community, exploring the various boards and posts has been great! I embarked on my framing 'venture' mid last year, with endless reading and a couple of day-courses courtesy of Framers Equipment in northampton (shout out to those guys) which led me up until earlier this year where I acquired a more-or less complete set of equipment as well as materials to practise with.

Being furloughed due to the pandemic I have been dealt an opportunity (?) to continue with the above but also continue with finalising my chosen workspace; having converted my adjacent garage at home over the last couple of months I find myself now moving equipment into the workspace and begin putting my skills into practise. However, I need a workbench.

Given my garage is not the biggest (approx 234x480cm) I need to make the most effective use of space. I more or less have the plan worked out encompassing the underpinner, morso and wall cutter however I also have a plan press after being recommended by another framer.

My workshop plan layout simply does not have enough room to allow the plan press as well as a sizeable workbench (im looking at approx 130x170cm on which will also sit the ultimat gold 41" mattcutter). My thinking at this time is integrate the plan press with the workbench. I would also like the workbench to be moveable on castors.

So, my question is does anyone have any experience with customer workbench builders given my size requirements are not available 'off the shelf'?
Any recommendations?
Or is there another option that I'm missing entirely?

Many thanks all and look forward to contributing to the forum and wider community,

David

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by cleaver » Wed 20 May, 2020 2:23 pm

Welcome, David.

If I were you, I'd build my own workbench. Wickes do 3 x 2 inch (in old money) carcassing timber for about £1 a metre. Nice stuff to work with, as it has rounded edges and is pretty smooth.

You may well want to put a plans chest and/or dividers underneath the bench for sheets of mountboard, so keep that in mind.

The key thing is to get the height just right. BTW, have you got a copy of Pete Bingham's brilliant book (they almost give them away on ebay)? There's a good section on building a bench in there.

Good luck, buddy.

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by GeoSpectrum » Wed 20 May, 2020 6:25 pm

In had a local chippy build mine out of mdf. I designed and it he built exactly what I needed. Cost was
around £500 Incl materials but it’s a big bench.

If I was doing it myself I’d probably use bolt together aluminium extrusions.
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by Steve N » Wed 20 May, 2020 9:27 pm

8ft x4ft 18mm thick chipboard for the top, you don't need it any wider, you can cut it shorter, 4x4 timber for the legs , 4x1 for bracing also for shelves, use ply with a framework of 2x1 for strength, you can knock one up in an afternoon, save money, DIY.
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by Keith Hewitt » Thu 21 May, 2020 3:40 am

An old framer friend of mine, told me cover your new bench with some left over carpet.

Cant remember his reasoning, but just passing it on in case it helps
I have visited distributors and framers in 89 countries - no two are the same.

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by Not your average framer » Thu 21 May, 2020 9:45 am

My benches are typically made with 2" X " timber which has been cut of the Morso and glued and screwed at the corners. The corners are cross braced to keep everything solid and the bench tops are 18mm chipboard, or MDF. As a rule, I like to make everything that I need, including shop fittings myself and often re-purpose good quality secondhand wood. I am well equiped to handle almost any woodworking task and can make it look totally professional. If you have the time, maybe you could do something similar youself. It would save you all lot more money, if you can do it your self.
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by David » Thu 21 May, 2020 10:18 am

When I started I used Dexion Speedframe for my benches. The system is made up of a square steel tube and various joint and corner fittings. You can make any size/configuration bench or table that you like. You need to find a supplier that can cut the tubes to length, so you need to do some designing and maths to provide a cutting list and you receive a kit with all the bits. The benches are easy to put together. I had benches which accommodated mountboard and glass underneath and standard sheet MDF/chipboard on top. Not the cheapest option but sturdy, space efficient and quick to assemble, I'm still using some of the benches nearly 30 years later...

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by StevenG » Thu 21 May, 2020 11:05 am

When I moved into the shop, it was a mess but the previous owner had a wall display made from decking. I just ripped it off the wall, cut it up and joined it again in the shape of a workbench X2. The moulding storage was made from ideas that I gathered from this very useful & knowledgeable forum 🙂
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by Steve N » Thu 21 May, 2020 11:24 am

StevenG
I think the decking gives it a very neo-classical look, very posh :clap: :rock:
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by cleaver » Thu 21 May, 2020 11:49 am

I also love the recycling you did, Steven. :clap:

I too inherited some usable timber - which saved me a fair chunk of money on the stuff I had to buy.

Intrigued by the grand staircase...handy for making a dramatic entrance (or exit)!

Well done, mate (Greta approves!!).

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by Not your average framer » Thu 21 May, 2020 11:56 am

Hi Steve,

Looks good. A proper workshop!
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by dmcgreen » Thu 21 May, 2020 12:49 pm

Thanks for the advice all, plenty food for thought.

I'm fairly handy and like to do what I can given my skills but where I suspect metalwork will come into it I'm apprehensive but sounds like timber-based design can be sturdy enough.

Nice looking workshop @stevenG - envious of the space :lol:

Plan is to look into speedframe and some of the timber-based designs suggested.

Watch this space :!:

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by Richard Photofusion » Thu 21 May, 2020 2:44 pm

Lockable Heavy duty castors under all the wheels! All my benches are on wheels - makes life so much easier when a tricky shaped job comes through.
Printers, laminator, benches, rolls of laminates and vinyls, all mobile, even some of the shelving racks. Only a few 8' cupboards the Steeltrak and a server rack are more or less permanently placed.

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by StevenG » Fri 22 May, 2020 10:19 am

cleaver wrote:
Thu 21 May, 2020 11:49 am
I also love the recycling you did, Steven. :clap:

I too inherited some usable timber - which saved me a fair chunk of money on the stuff I had to buy.

Intrigued by the grand staircase...handy for making a dramatic entrance (or exit)!

Well done, mate (Greta approves!!).
Yes, the staircase indeed, it's where I keep my smoking jackets & booze, I usually have the staff bring customers into the workshop once they're announced I slowly descend with my monocle & glass of gin as I wax lyrical about mount widths or maybe I use the upstairs for storage & tea making
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by StevenG » Fri 22 May, 2020 10:21 am

Steve N wrote:
Thu 21 May, 2020 11:24 am
StevenG
I think the decking gives it a very neo-classical look, very posh :clap: :rock:
Cheers Steve, you know me, I can't get enough neo- classical

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by Not your average framer » Fri 22 May, 2020 10:47 am

WOW! Looking at the inside of the roof, I can see that it is an industrial unit, but the way that the inside on been fitted out, it looks much older and far more stylish. I love the way that you have given a run of the mill industrial unit such a really homely feel. Such a great atmospheric place to work and such a spacious feel too. Adding that stair case and banisters is nothing short of inspired! I bet you really look forward to going to work.

I think perhaps, a real inspiration to the rest of us!

:clap: :clap: :clap:
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by cleaver » Fri 22 May, 2020 12:31 pm

Neo-classical workbench motifs, panoramic staircase...now you're just rubbing our noses in it, Steven :lol:

What a dream of a workspace - good for you, amigo.

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by prospero » Fri 22 May, 2020 1:01 pm

Almost everything in my workshop has been something else at one time. :lol:
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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by cleaver » Fri 22 May, 2020 1:37 pm

Is it haunted, Prospero....or are you a Buddhist? :lol:

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Re: New member and would be grateful for some assitance!

Post by Justintime » Fri 22 May, 2020 7:48 pm

I found it an organic process.I scoured ebay and Facebook marketplace for most of my storage, had some help to build a glass storage unit similar to the Lions one and mountboard holder. Wheels for sure and the right height is essential, too low and you'll soon start to feel it. An 8x4 sheet is a good starting point, i used a 5litre paint can to mark out rounded corners and rounded them all off,it makes moving around a lot more comfortable in a small space. I have moved things around a few times, until i found the most efficient setup then added loads of shelves. Dont underestimate how much storage you will need and how its really handy to have your everyday use tools within easy reach of the bench.

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