Introduction: Ultimate Mobile T-Track Workbench + Customizable Storage
When I set out to build this mobile workbench, I focused on three main tasks that I wanted to optimize: joinery, sanding, and assembly. By using T-Track, I can take advantage of tons of accessories that will hold project pieces where I want them. With two sliding panels, I've stored my sanding and vacuum hose next to my shop vac. With several large drawers and a sliding tray, I can store just about every other accessory and power tool I need to work at this bench!
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Save money on these tools I used for this project:
- 3/4" Melamine, 4'x8'
- 3/4" Plywood, 4'x8'
- 1/2" Plywood, 4'x8'
- 1/4" Plywood, 4'x8'
- Hardwood for trim
- Dominos 12mm x 140mm
- Z-Clips (includes screws)
- Drawer slides 14"
- Drawer slides 20"
- Drawer pulls
- Pocket hole screws 1-1/4"
- Pocket hole screws 2-1/2"
- Pocket hole screws 1
- 16 gauge nails
- Screws #6 x 1"
- Workbench Casters
- K Body REVO Parallel Bar Clamp
- K Body Extender
- Trigger Clamp
- Ratcheting Table Clamp
- RZ mask M2
- Table saw (new version)
- Miter saw
- Kreg ACS (track saw)
- Domino XL 700 or 500
- Biscuit joiner
- Drill (new version)
- Impact driver
- Kreg Foreman
- Shop Vac
- Flush trim bit
- Top bearing flush trim bit
- Flush cut saw
- Kreg router table
- Tongue and groove router bit set
- Woodpeckers Paolini 6" pocket rule
- Woodpeckers carpenters square
- Ridgid 16 gauge nailer
- Rockler glue brush
- Freud glue line rip blade
- Freud ultimate plywood & melamine blade
- Freud crosscut blade
- Dead blow hammer
Step 1: Get the Plans
This project is built with plywood and dimensional lumber from plans I have available. Grab these to take out the dimensional guess work and get your project done quick!
Step 2: Build the Base
To kick things off, I start by rough cutting the 4x4's I'll use for the base. I typically rough cut lumber 1"-2" longer than the final dimension needed.
This step is optional, but I wanted my boards to be as straight as possible, so I jointed and planed all 4 sides. This brought my 4x4's down to about 3-1/4" square.
I used dominos for the joinery on this build because they're very strong and extremely fast. HOWEVER, if you don't have a Domino, don't fret. You can still build this bench by using dowels, pocket holes, or hand cut mortise and tenon joinery!
I first glue the dominos into the legs and then add the short stretchers to build out each end. Since I arranged the dominos the way I did, I had to use two different lengths. All of those details are spelled out in my plans though to take out the guess work for you!
I add glue inside each mortise and on each end of the stretchers.
Using my K Body Revo's, I clamp each end together after knocking it together with a dead blow hammer.
Once the glue has cured on each end assembly, I attach the long stretchers in the same manner. As you see, I had to use the extenders for my parallel clamps for the final glue up of this workbench frame!
Step 3: Make It a Mobile Workbench
Whether you have a large shop or not, the ability to move around a workbench easily is well worth the investment and extra time to install some casters. If you decide to install casters, I'd recommend doing it at this stage before the bench is very heavy.
Step 4: Install Divider Panels
Next up, I rip some 3/4" plywood to size on the table saw and cut a few 2x4's that will be used for extra stability and serve as anchoring points for the divider panels.
Using a K Body Revo, I secure each 2x4 with 2-1/2" pocket hole screws as indicated in my plans.
Now I add pocket holes to each of the panels as needed. I used a clamp-on pocket hole jig and the Kreg K5 for several years before ever upgrading to the Foreman. Those other jigs are great products and still see regular use in my shop!
Again, using a K Body Revo, I install each of the panels using 1-1/4" pocket hole screws.
Here I used an EHK Trigger clamp along with an F-Style clamp to hold a small panel at the proper height while it's secured using 1-1/4" pocket hole screws.
Step 5: Build Workbench Top
To secure the top, I used Z-clips. To install these, I used my biscuit joiner to cut a series of slots for them to locate into.
With the plywood base layer centered on the frame, I run the screws in to secure it.
Black melamine was chosen for its aesthetics and slick surface. I oversized the melamine and secured it to the base layer with #6x1" screws. These screws were installed from the underside of the base layer into the melamine. Next, using a flush trim router bit, I cut the melamine flush with the base layer.
Next I added some hardwood trim to protect the edge. I went with Ambrosia Maple because I had some extra on hand and it just seemed like it'd be fun to dress a workbench up a little :)
To attach the trim, I used glue and 1-1/2" 16 gauge nails. I then cut the trim flush with a flush cutting saw.
Once trim was installed on each end, I put down painter's tape to protect the melamine surface and cut the trim flush with the top and bottom of the bench top. I then repeated this process for each side of the bench top.
Step 6: How to Install T-Track
I chose to install T-track in this bench for the versatility it adds. While this step added a fair amount of time, I think it was well worth it.
To route the slots, I used a top bearing flush trim bit and two 8' plywood scraps to act as rails. I secured the fence with my EHK trigger clamps and F-style clamps.
To secure the t-track I used #6x1" screws. By using screws this long, I not only secured the t-track, but also pulled the melamine and base layer of plywood together more.
Step 7: How to Build Drawers
For this bench, I used 1/2" plywood to build the drawer boxes. I ripped everything to width on the table saw and then cut all of the components to length at the miter saw.
To cut a groove for the 1/4" thick drawer bottoms, I used my router table with a tongue and groove router bit set. You can also do this with a standard 1/4" bit or even on your table saw. Oh, and small tangent... If you haven't seen my router table setup, check it out here!
With all of the grooves cut, bottoms cut, and pocket holes drilled, it's time to assemble! I like using a parallel clamp to hold everything tight while I assemble drawer boxes. Once I build some jigs for assembling future drawer boxes on this workbench, I know this process will be even faster!
Step 8: Install Drawers and Sliding Panels
An entire blog post could be written just on the topic of installing drawers, but for today, I'm going to walk you through it quickly.
First off, I set the drawer slide on a 3/4" thick piece of plywood that is resting on the two bottom stretchers of the bench. I then set it back the thickness of a drawer front and secure it to the bench.
Once both slides are installed, I then set the drawer box on some 1/4" scrap and secure the skinny portion of the slide to the drawer box. With the first drawer box installed, I repeat the process following the measurements in my plans.
Now to install the drawer fronts! I use a stack of playing cards to set the reveal (gap) above and below each drawer front. Once the drawer front is centered in the space, I clamp it with two EHK Trigger clamps. Then I attach the handle and further secure the drawer front with two additional #6 x 1" screws from inside the box.
To install the sliding panels, I use the same process. The main difference here is that the slides are oriented horizontally and not vertically per the norm. Do note that these slides will not support as much weight in this orientation as in their standard vertical orientation.
Step 9: Go Build This Mobile Workbench!
Ready to build this mobile workbench? Grab the table plans here!
Be sure to tag your post on Instagram with #woodshopmike so I can see how it turns out!