A Frame and Panel Lid for the Workbench Base – Part 5

At the end of my last post, I had made the frame and panel lid for the bottom of my workbench base, but there were gaps on either side of it.  I had anticipated these gaps and planned for them.  When I cut the rabbets in the top of the front and back stretchers that support the lid/shelf, I cut identical ones on the side stretchers.  I will fit boards  into these rabbets that will fill the gap between the stretcher and the edge of the lid.

You can read /see what was done previously here:

In the below picture you can see the gap caused by the legs being thicker than the stretchers.

I still need to cut and fit two pieces to fill the gaps between the side stretchers and the lid.

I still need to cut and fit two pieces to fill the gaps between the side stretchers and the lid.

I’ll keep this post shorter than the others as I’m only fitting two boards after all.

I selected some lumber from my remaining douglas fir pile and cut them to an oversize length.

Cutting some more wood to fill the gaps on each side of the lid.

Cutting some more wood to fill the gaps on each side of the lid.

I jointed them and then ran them through the planer until they were a little over 3/4″, which is the depth of the rabbets.

Planing down to just over 3/4"

Planing down to just over 3/4″

I tested the fit against one of the rabbets in the long stretchers.  You can see that it is just a hair proud of the surface.  During final fitting, I will flush this up with a smoothing plane.

A quick check of the thickness against one of the rabbets in the stretchers.

A quick check of the thickness against one of the rabbets in the stretchers.

I cut one end square.

Squaring a line.

Squaring a line.

And cleaned up the cut, right to the knife line, with a block plane.

Cleaning up the end.

Cleaning up the end.

I took that freshly cut end and held it in place against the inside edge of the back leg.

Held in place for marking.

Held in place for marking.

I held a steel rule flush against the inside edge of the front leg and marked the board to length.

A steel rule held against the leg to mark a knife line on the board.

A steel rule held against the leg to mark a knife line on the board.

I then cut to this line a cleaned up the end with the block plane.  I planed until I had a nice tight fit.  If I had a shooting board, this would have been a perfect use for it.   When this bench is finished, a shooting board will be one of my first add-ons.

Cut to length for a nice snug fit.

Cut to length for a nice snug fit.

With the board cut to length, all that remains was to cut it to width.  I marked the width directly off the leg.

A steel rule held against the leg again, this time to mark the width.

A steel rule held against the leg again, this time to mark the width.

I cut the board to width on the table saw.  I deliberately left it wider than needed so that I could fine tune the fit later.

I ripped the parts to width leaving them slightly oversize.

I ripped the parts to width leaving them slightly oversize.

I used a No. 4  to plane down to the marks and then rechecked the fit.

I fine tuned the width with a hand plane.

I fine tuned the width with a hand plane.

A perfect fit.

A perfect fit.

I put glue on both surfaces (the rabbet and the board).  I always apply glue to both surfaces in a joint as I feel it yields a superior strength at the glue line.  The rabbets are ¾” x ¾”, so this gives me 1 ½” of long-grain to long-grain glue surface per board.  The other edge of each board is unsupported.  I don’t think this is going to be a problem as they aren’t likely to have to support any weight and are a little less than 3″ wide.

I brushed glue into the rabbet and onto the boards.

I brushed glue into the rabbet and onto the boards.

I used some scrap wood, not really as cauls, but rather to protect the boards from clamp marks.

I added a strip of scrap wood to prevent clamp marks.

I added a strip of scrap wood to prevent clamp marks.

I clamped up both sides of the bench and wiped off the little bit of glue squeeze-out with damp paper towels.

Boards clamped on both sides and excess glue wiped off.

Boards clamped on both sides and excess glue wiped off.

The next day I removed the clamps and gave the boards a light sanding with 220 grit paper.

After removing the clamps, I gave it a light sanding with 220 grit.

After removing the clamps, I gave it a light sanding with 220 grit.

The other side.

The other side.

 

 

They’re nothing fancy, but they perform the needed function of closing the gaps.  I’m happy with how the workbench base looks with the addition of these.

In the next post, I’ll start installing the hardware on the lid.

More soon.

 

– Jonathan White

About Jonathan

I am a woodworker and hand tool restorer / collector. I buy too many tools and don't build enough - I need help!
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2 Responses to A Frame and Panel Lid for the Workbench Base – Part 5

  1. That’s a sweet looking cross cut sled you have.

    • Jonathan says:

      Thanks Ralph,

      I made that when I first got my bandsaw. I was experimenting with my new found ability to cut curves. It is made from douglas fir, a plywood base, and oak runners. I finished it with danish oil. It is a very handy tool to have and spends a lot of time on my saw. It cuts perfect 90s every time.

      I hope you are well and that your table restoration isn’t causing you too much grief…

      All the best,

      Jonathan

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