Return To Roubo

About a year and a half ago I decided to do some woodworking, and with Roubo-styled workbenches all the rage that seemed like a good place to start.

I picked up a 6×9 salvaged Douglas Fir beam and proceeded to hand plane three sections of it square and glue up a bench top.  It was a unbelievable workout, complicated by knots and my inexperience with hand tools in general.  But I got all three pieces glued up, then squared up the entire slab on all six sides.

Roubo Raw Materials

Roubo Raw Materials

No One Mentioned Workshop Aerobics!

No One Mentioned Workshop Aerobics!

I picked up the wood to make the legs right away, but it was green – so I thought I’d let it dry for a few weeks.  Weeks turned into months, and eventually I cut the joinery for the leg-ends to attach to the top.  After probably a year at that point the legs were still damp inside.  The leg joinery was cut back in November of 2012. I guess I’m not in a rush to get this finished…

Leg Joinery Complete

Leg Joinery Complete

Anyway, today I spent a couple of hours organizing my shop spaces.  I moved the blacksmithing power hammer to the metal shop, and moved my $75 wood lathe to the wood shop.  Parts for cars that I want to build someday were hoisted into the attic space in the metal shop.  And the parts for the Roubo bench were hauled to the wood shop.  I started squaring up the stock for the stretchers – It’s kind of amazing how much resin has seemed out of these parts.  Ick.

I started laying out the locations for the right side “end vise” on the bench as well as the legs.  It’s all upside down in this picture, so hopefully I’ll get the end vise on the right end and the face vise on the left front.  I think the first step will be to mount the vise.  If I move it beck from the edge maybe 3″ the vise guide rods will be behind the leg, and I san move the legs more towards the ends of the bench – which should make it less tippy.  To mount the vise I’ll have to make a recess in the bottom of the bench, and in the end.  I’ll get to work on that next.

Next Saturday is the Stained Glass class, I’m looking forward to that.  I have my patterns for the sconces, but I’m not sure I’ll be able to do those in the class as it’s probably more intricate that they want in a beginner’s class.  We’ll see how that plays out then.

Upside-Down Mock-Up

Upside-Down Mock-Up

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