Announcing our February 2016 Workbench Idea

As we roll into February 2016, we have a great workbench idea brought to us by Hakan L. from Umea, Sweden.  This workbench features a 5″ thick hard maple top along with birch legs and also a leg and wagon vise for good measure.  We know you’ll enjoy this Scandinavian beauty.

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wagon ViseWB-Feb2016-2WebWB-Feb2016-3WebWB-Feb2016-4WebWB-Feb2016-5Web


After reading all the books about workbenches I could find and looking through a few plans, I finally built this bench in 2014.

24″ deep, 96″ long and 36″ high. Weight 450 lb.

The top is 5″ hard maple (imported from the US. Hard to come by here in Sweden). Base is birch which is readily available locally.

I have access to some great machines through my work as a cabinet maker. 36″ band saw, 20″ jointer, 24″ planer, 52″wide belt sander, and a big CNC machine to mention a few.

I’m a big advocate for hand tools and was going to cut the mortises and tenons by hand but succumbed to laziness and let the CNC do it for me.

The vise screws are from your basic kits and they are flawless. The leg vise garter is made out of 7 layers of jacaranda veneer, and I used a chain vise kit from Ancora yacht service to keep the vise parallel to the leg. There’s a linear bearing in the leg to guide the leg vise. This works great, but the shaft (being a standard cold rolled bar) is to soft and the balls in the bearing wear grooves in it.

Should have used a hardened shaft instead. The shelf is 3/4″ shiplapped birch. Each one has a dowel in the middle for steering so they are always at the same distance from each other.

Finish is 2 coats of linseed oil.


Hakan L.  – Umea, Sweden

Lake Erie Toolworks Whitepaper Update

Heads up that we’ve just released our latest Lake Erie Toolworks Whitepaper that provides in detail the reasons behind the design decisions of our vises and components along with the construction and machining methodologies that we use.

You can find the whitepaper available on our website in both the “Install” section as well as the “FAQ” section of our website.

We hope you enjoy.

Jeff Dombrowski – Lake Erie Toolworks



Announcing our January 2016 Workbench Idea

As we kick off the new year for 2016, we have an amazing Roubo style workbench idea built by Ken K. from Birch Run, Michigan.  Ken has constructed a massive 600 pound bench that features 3 different vises to accommodate his woodworking needs.  What a great way to ring in the new year, extremely well done Ken.







The table top is 84’’ x 44’’ x 4-½” made from Maple. The legs are 6’’ x 6’’ x 34’’ also Maple. The runners & bench ends are made from Oak, as I ran out of the Maple. The leg vise is made from Black walnut and the leg vise leg was tapped by Lake Erie Toolworks to accept the wood screw (very well done, thank you). The end vise is a Lee Valley Twin Screw the width of the table. The other end is a Benchcrafted  tail vise.

All the lumber I cut from standing trees in Mid-Michigan three years ago in preparation for the day I got to make my very own bench. I used a Danish oil for the finish. The total weight is estimated at 600 lb’s.

Once I started the table it took about three months after work and weekend to complete. I still haven’t drilled the dog holes yet but I will soon.  All the vendors provided great instructions that made it easy to understand and install their products. I will admit I moved forward with great care to avoid any mistakes.

Ken K. – Birch Run, Michigan