The Holtzapffel Workbench – Day 38

(Part 21 of a series)

Took some time today to finish up the end vise install and flip this thing on it’s feet. What a mess.

I started out this morning by continuing to chop out the spot for the vise, but quickly didn’t feel like messing with the chisels anymore. I grabbed the router, which still had the massive straight bit installed, and used that to get most of the waste out. That was a mess, it was snowing pine shavings everywhere. Once I got the vise fitted in place, I took a trip to Lowe’s to grab shorter bolts – the ones I used to mount it to the old bench were 6″, and I opted for 4″ this time. While I was there I picked up some BLO to finish the bench with.

Fueled up on Waffle House, I came back to tackle installing the vise. Locating the holes went fine. No problems there. Unfortunately there was no way to come at it from the top side without doing it from the top side. So, I had to sadly disassemble my old workbench. Since a hurricane showed up (gee, thanks), I couldn’t just move it outside but it had to be destroyed. So sad. Pieces out of the way and the floor swept, the bench came down to earth. Luckily my table saw and extension table held the weight beautifully. The bench is now solidly on all fours in position in the shop. Yay! Major milestone! Before I flipped it over, I gave it a once over with my ROS and 220-grit paper.

Time to finish the holes from the top and do the counterbore. Since my small bits weren’t long enough to get all the way through the top, I had to use a 1/4″ bit. Bad choice. The hole was too large for me to use a forstner bit to make the counterbore, and it tore up the holes like crazy. Some work (a lot of work, actually) with the 3/4″ auger and the chisels made it work, but it’s ugly. Some effort was required to mount the end vise, but it’s in. Unfortunately the forstner bit is stuck in the brace, and I need it to make the dog holes. Grr…

The shop is a disaster, with inches of sawdust on the ground, tools everywhere, pieces of workbench everywhere…it will be a couple days probably before I can get to work on making sure the top is level. Leaning toward using the router again for that, but with a 3/4″ bit I don’t know how it will turn out. This time I will use stops on the sled so I don’t have any more screwups, for sure.

No pics. It’s too embarrassing.

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