The lathe stand – design reveal

There it is, in all it’s glory. I included another copy at the bottom of the post for enlargement. I’ll take you through the criteria again and the design philosophy.

The genesis for this project if you recall is the bent leg of the included stand. It is angle iron, and while it is a bit more quality than you’d expect from Harbor Freight, it is still only Harbor Freight. However, I’m not sure anything from Jet or Powermatic would have held up to me dragging it across my shop so many times. I should have used moving pads, but too late now.

This should ‘stand’ up to the abuse a lot better, and provide a lot more storage. I designed it with a combination of simplicity and style, to match my workbench. The body and top of the stand are constructed out of 11 2x4s, either SYP or Fir. Where I didn’t treat the workbench, I will be here, probably with the Watco Teak Oil I have leftover from the outdoor table build. The legs are doubled-up 2x4s, and the top is laminated with approximately 11 boards. The goal is to be about 16″ deep, and with some minor jointing I should be right about there. Plus or minus a fraction of an inch won’t be a concern. The render shows approximately 2×2 boards, but I will be laminating them so that the height is about 3.5″. Stretchers connect the legs and provide support for a plywood shelf.

Under the top will be two drawers. The top drawer will be horizontal storage for tools. Ever since the first time I saw this feature, I’ve wanted it for my lathe. I don’t know yet how many I’ll be able to store here, but I’m thinking it will be at least eight. I’ll also have storage drilled through the top for vertical storage, quantity to be determined. I could always add it later, because it will probably be done in the same manner as the bench – bit and brace.

The lower drawer (and perhaps there would be room for another) would be for various lathe accessories that are currently strewn about the shop. Live center, punch out, chuck wrench, etc. I’d also keep the turning sandpaper here as well. I’m not sure the turner’s finish would do well here in a horizontal position, so it would probably still be kept with the other finishes. All drawers would be done with plywood, and perhaps a wood fake front. I am considering push-open slides, but haven’t investigated cost for that. I’ll have to buy slides regardless, because I’m only looking at around 14″, where all my stock is 22″. I opted to use regular economy slides and devise a locking mechanism for the drawers while turning. Slides are ordered and awaiting delivery, hopefully before the following weekend.

The shelf is going to serve two purposes – primarily, it will provide extra storage. I’m envisioning at least one grinder being stored here, because I don’t need them that often. Perhaps my dovetail jig could go back here temporarily. The secondary purpose is to provide a bit of lower center of gravity. The bottom will be enclosed and filled with sand, with the shelf providing the upper, removable cover. The bottom of the legs will be chamfered to help with the inevitable moves around the shop.

Construction of the base will come together with the 10mm Dominos left over from the table build. I haven’t quite decided on how the base will fit the top, but was considering doing M&T again. I should have enough length in the legs to do that. It means a bit more work and time, but this is still a project that should come together fairly fast. I don’t know if it could be done in a weekend, but that is the goal.

Lumber will be picked up either today or tomorrow, and the project will most likely start tomorrow. Estimated project cost: around $50.

lathe stand

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