Picture of Low Waste, Simple, Rock Solid Workbench
First order of business when I moved into my house was to build a work bench.  Okay the wife made me paint first, but the bench was pretty high up there.

After I built mine, my family came out to see the house, and my dad was so taken by it he wanted to recreate it in his garage.  I drew up some plans for the bench, gave him a parts list, and came out to help him build it over a weekend.  This is the documentation for that build.

First some rational for what I wanted to make and the goals that drove it:
• This will be an “Assembly Bench” as opposed to a woodworking or other specialized bench
• Low waste and only uses materials from the big box stores.
• Should stand up to abuse and needs to be rock solid (read: heavy).
• No fancy joints or tools required, simple construction with screws and bolts
• Lots of storage and surface space.

I spent a while researching what kind of bench I wanted to make and eventually settled on a dimensional lumber with MDF top.  The online community is split on MDF, purist wood workers refuse to touch it, others say it doesn't stand up well to abuse.  I've done a few things to this bench to try and increase it’s longevity and have had no regrets thus far.
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DopalgangrD made it!5 months ago

Overall a great build. The only two things I changed was using 3" screws to screw to wall (has to go through a 2x4 and 1/2 drywall) and instead of making the center pieces of the table top 11x96 and 18x96 and having a void, there is enough MDF to make two 14.5x96 pieces and no voids. This seemed most logical and gave me three solid layers of MDF for the top. I also used two coats of Zinnser Shellac and two final coats of Minwax Polycrylic Protective Finish. Thanks for the plans.


sure would be nice if you could edit these posts, anyway I forgot one thing. I also used pressure treated 2x4's for the ones that touch the concrete. Sometimes concrete can wick moisture so I figured it would be best to use them. FWIW

DopalgangrD5 months ago

Just bought all the supplies to build this (HD for $190). I noticed however that you have 9 carriage bolts in the picture of the finished product but your cut sheet only calls for 6. Appears that you doubled the top of the 4x4's with two? Is this necessary? BTW HD didn't carry 5/16x7 only 6" so I went with 6 3/8x8" should be stronger and since the length is interior I doubt the extra inch will pose an issue. Also, did you coat the bottom of the MDF with shellac or just the top? Instead of shellac can one use poly? Thanks

dduncan21 year ago

AWESOME!! I voted for this in both categories. GREAT Work Brodda!

rimar20001 year ago

Good work!

This is awesome, things like this cost so much to buy- why not just make one

Thanks for sharing Skitz, that is indeed one heck of a heavy duty work bench. I've bench putting off building a good solid work bench for myself for some time but your project has definitely given me some inspiration, thank you! P.s. Nice shop smith :)

CurtWG1 year ago

Nice and heffty, I like it.