Introduction: All Terrain Mobile Workbench
After completing the 16' X 10' Shed, I realized some projects are still to large to do inside the shed. If you haven't seen that instructable yo can check it out here:
At the same time I need a table that could be moved at will but be sturdy enough to take a lot of weight. I do store it in the shed when not in use. I am not the first to this as someone (CraftyTrev) has already published the idea on this site. Here is the link to that:
The way I built the shelves into the shed have some power tools like a miter saw and drill press mounted to them so the only power tool needed to be mounted to my mobile workbench was the table saw. I knew I wanted to build one similar to CraftyTrev's but mine had to be usable primarily for outdoor use. Essentially it needed pneumatic wheel casters instead of the common style of casters since our property has no concrete slabs.
The overall cost of the project was around $100. I kept the receipts for this instructable to list an exact total although they have faded over time. I will also include a prices and materials needed spreadsheet as I do for every instructable.
For the materials and prices list I have done that separately so it can be printed off. The program I use to do all of my work with typing or spreadsheets is called Kingsoft WPS and is free. By using another program it normally saves files at a different file type than what Microsoft Word uses. I have used WPS for years and have never had any issues with it. So if you would like to be able to view it you might need to download and install that program to be able to save and print it off.
Step 1: Preparation
Materials And Prices:
For the materials and prices list I have done that separately so it can be printed off. The program I use to do all of my work with typing or spreadsheets is called Kingsoft WPS and is free. By using another program it normally saves files at a different file type than what Microsoft Word uses. I have used WPS for years and have never had any issues with it. So if you would like to be able to view it you might need to install that program to be able to save and print it off.
When I list these tools they are simply what I ended up using. You may be able to substitute some of these items with tools that you prefer in order to make it work better for yourself. Work smart not hard. I have also included the Sketchup Model if you have Sketchup to be able to view it yourself.
- Compound Miter Saw
- Portable Circular Saw
- Portable Drill
- Framing Square
- Speed Square
- Measuring Tape
- Large Clamp or two
- Drill Bits
Step 2: Measuring, Marking, Cutting, and Assembling the Frame
This is a simple step because its the same measurement needed for ten boards cutting down (five) eight foot long 2x4's should give you the ten you will need.. That measurement is three foot, nine inches (3', 9''). These ten boards will be attached to the to the longer sides shown in the picture above. The longer sides are 8 foot in length.
TIP: When lumber is purchased you should ensure that is exactly eight feet in length. Often times when I buy lumber whether it is a sheet or a board it will be 1/2'' over the dimensions that I expected. So most likely a store bought eight footer 2x4 will truly be 96 and 1/2'' instead of 96''. For the sheet of OSB that I used it was exactly 48'' by 96'' so I had to accommodate everything else to make it fit to the OSB.
For the positioning I evenly spaced the cross pieces at two feet apart on center of each board. I started with the outside edges and one screw in each end to temporarily hold it together creating a 4X8 wooden rectangle. After verifying that it was all squared up I put in another screw in each end of the outside pieces then worked on the other boards in between. After the first ladder style frame was finished I simply place my cut down pieces directly on top of the first frame and screwed it all together. For the most outer corners shown in picture above I had originally used brackets to hold it together but later removed them to use them in a different area.
If you have done everything listed above you should also have tow wooden frames. One of those frames will be used to mount the wheel casters to it. I chose to use ten inch pneumatic castors for mine because we have mostly dirt and grassy terrain to work with on the property. I imagine it will roll just as smooth if not better on gravel and other smoother surfaces like concrete. If you plan to use it primarily indoors or in an area with a smooth floor/ground then other wheels castors might work better for you.
Step 3: Castor Mounting and Assembly
So we have the two frames built and squared. I knew with such a large wheel I would need to move it inward some. It would be more stable once upright to have it closer to the corner, although with these wheels they would stick out and I didn't want to ever run into them or trip once it was upright. If you follow the pictures I gradually decide to move in inward. Picture with the yellow triangle is to show that the wheel wont surpass the edge of the frame therefor won't be able to trip over it once it is upright.
It's up to you on the type and positioning of the wheel castors. If you are building yours just like my mobile workbench, than make the marks at 4.5'', 8'', and 11.5'' down the sides (eight foot long boards) from each end of the frame. Only one of the frames need this done to it. Cut down four more boards to 3', 9'' to squeeze into place between the lines and screw them into place as well. Do this at both ends of the frame. You should now have a place to mount the castors onto. I marked the line at 6'' from the sides then laid the castor in place and marked the holes to be drilled.
I think the drill bit size I used was 1/2''. I bolted the castors to the frame with zinc plated bolts, nuts, and two washers per hole. The bolts will need to be at least 2.5'' in length. After all four castors were secured I laid down the frame right side up then the other directly back on top of that one. I now needed to attach some legs or vertical supporting boards to the base frame to suspend the top frame. The length of those boards are really up to what you prefer the height of the bench top to be at. I cut six boards at 37 inches each. If you look closely at the images I removed the inside corner brackets then secured the vertical supports into the corners and two in the middle. I made sure the end of the board was flush with the edges of the frame.
I secured these vertical supports first by using 2.5'' screws through the frame and into the supports. Then I added the small galvanized corner brackets as you can see in a couple of the pictures both at the top and bottoms of each vertical support. I had help from another person to temporarily hold the top frame up as I attached it to the top ends of the vertical supporting studs.
Step 4: Table Saw Mounting and Surface Area Assemby
The way I secured the two middle upright boards where not symmetrical like everything else. You should be able to see the images of it in the dark where I circled in red. For the bottom shelf I used one 48'' X 96'' sheet of OSB and cut it in half which created two 48'' X 48'' sheets. I could partially slide them onto the lower frame so I notched it out in a way they would slide in all the way and be screwed into place.
The framing for the table saw was kinda made up as I went and didn't take any images of the measurements for that part. In the photos above it shows the way I created the framing to support the top of the table saw then the base of the table saw. Following that I cut out the square that the table top surface area would be. I made sure to give it an extra inch in length so that I can put the fence on if I ever wanted to use it. I finished by screwing in the top frame surface area with 1'' screws.
Step 5: Final Product
Well it wasn't the most difficult thing I have worked on but it was a challenge. So far I have already got my money's worth out of it. The table saw is a very nice addition to it since I can lower the table saw blade and the whole are is usable for projects. At the same time it is very sturdy compared to the stock table saw stand that the table saw came with. Its very mobile and easily gets in and out of the shed. If I could go back in time I would have built this prior to the shed because it would have helped out so much with that.
Personal customization includes a twelve socket power strip for use of multiple power tools and magnetic bars mounted along the edge of the top frame to temporarily hold wrenches and other metal objects.
I hope this instructable helped you out. Let me know if you have any comments or questions.