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 Post subject: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:02 pm 
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In the past I have always made do, when it came to workbenches, either buying one form a Store, or making my own from whatever I could get hold of, but just over a year ago, I decided that at my age, it was time to make one that will see me out!

I am lucky enough, that mahogany here in Colombia, is used for construction lumber, the only downside is that it is wet, in many cases saturated with a combination of water and preservative, which does make it harder to work with, and somewhat unpredictable as it dries out, but I was prepared to take the gamble.

Having designed the bench, on paper (I still have to master Sketchup!), I bought the timber, and cut all the parts to approximate size

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I then prepared the joints, I had decided to use threaded rod for all the joints, as opposed to traditional joinery, I had to drill all the timbers with a forstner bit, to give access to all the nuts.

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Then came the frame assembly, I thought I may have had a few problems lining up the drilled holes, but it went together far more smoothly than I could have hoped for.

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Once that was done it was time to fit the top and lower shelf, which consisted of mahogany planking

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Once in place, I hand planed the top, which being 2.5m by 0.9m took some time!

Then it was time to enjoy my new bench.

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I have made good use of the bench since, the only downside to the build was using wet timber, as it has dried out, the bench top has shrunk, leaving gaps between the planks, unfortunately I recessed the screws holding it down, and filled the holes with a sawdust/glue filler, and now I can't remove them. I have to make the decision as to whether I cover the top with a sheet of hardboard, which can be changed as it gets damaged, or as has been suggested, make wooden filler strips to go in the gaps, but for a workbench, that seems a lot of work.

One benefit of the bolted joints, has been that as it has dried out, I have been able to tighten the bolts which has kept it totally rigid.


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For this message the author PhilCop has received gratitude : Argyll
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 Post subject: Re: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:15 pm 
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Nice one mate :thumbright:


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 Post subject: Re: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:16 pm 
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How long would it take if you left the mahogany to dry out naturally?


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 Post subject: Re: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:29 pm 
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Thanks Argyll :-)

Argyll wrote:
How long would it take if you left the mahogany to dry out naturally?


Because it is so wet, it would take 4 months plus, before it would be sufficiently dry to work with ease, however, you would have a lot of waste due to twisting and warping, and I don't have the space to store timber that I can't use. However with one exception (a mirror frame, that pulled itself to bits!) I have not had anything move too much once it has been built, as I tend to overdo joints, and fixtures. It is not a great problem, as long as I remember to compensate for that in the build., such as applying glue, where it probably would not have been needed if the wood was dry.


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 Post subject: Re: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:35 pm 
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It would be a dream for me if hardwood was cheaper than pine. Imagine building a shed out of mahogany ha, it would last a lifetime.


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 Post subject: Re: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2016 2:06 pm 
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That's a cracking bench, I bet that weighs a fair bit!

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 Post subject: Re: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2016 4:06 pm 
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ultimatehandyman wrote:
That's a cracking bench, I bet that weighs a fair bit!


Thanks, I have to put on my back support, if I try moving this, really it needs two people, I have moved it once, and I am hoping I won't have to move it again!!



For this message the author PhilCop has received gratitude : ultimatehandyman
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 Post subject: Re: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:04 pm 
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beautiful work there, I have always had a thing for mahagony!


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 Post subject: Re: Mahogany Workbench
PostPosted: Fri Aug 12, 2016 7:29 pm 
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that is one super bench i would put hardboard on top even if there were no gaps


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