Lake Erie Toolworks – Modified Nicholson English Workbench Idea

Our latest Workbench Idea comes from Tom M. from The Woodlands, Texas who has built a modified Nicholson English Workbench with a leg vise.  This juggernaut weighs in at around 300 pounds and is solid as a rock.  Tom also shows us the various major steps of construction that he used to build this monster bench from planing & joinery of the various wood components through glue-up and final assembly.  Enjoy!

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Nicholson Workbench, Leg Vise, Wood Vise,

This design was inspired by Paul Sellers on YouTube.  My version is a bit bigger.  I built is using hand tools only – just to see if I could.

The wood materials are Southern Yellow pine construction lumber purchased from Lowes.

The bench is sealed with boiled linseed oil, weighs about 300 pounds and is as solid as a rock.  I think it will last.

Regards,

Tom M. – The Woodlands, Texas

Lake Erie Toolworks – Split Top Roubo Workbench Idea

Our latest Workbench Idea comes from Ed D. from the Big Easy, New Orleans, Louisiana, who has built a fantastic Split Top Roubo Bench featuring a leg and wagon vise. Enjoy.

Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Leg Vise, Split Top Roubo, Wood Vise, Workbench Idea
Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Leg Vise, Split Top Roubo, Wood Vise, Workbench Idea
Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Leg Vise, Split Top Roubo, Wood Vise, Workbench Idea
Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Leg Vise, Split Top Roubo, Wood Vise, Workbench Idea
Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Leg Vise, Split Top Roubo, Wood Vise, Workbench Idea
Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Leg Vise, Split Top Roubo, Wood Vise, Workbench Idea

Hey Jeff!
I started this bench over a year ago but haven’t had time to finish it until now, since the pandemic closed me down for a few months. It’s made from 8/4 cherry and maple. I indulged myself and fancied it up a tiny bit with the laminated legs and ebony plugs.

Both vises work great. The wagon vise is an amazing help for planing as I’ve tried to make the transition to hand tools for everything except for initial milling.

Next on the agenda is a cherry tool chest that will fit into the base. Going to wooden screws is really a game-changer in my opinion when efficiency is a goal. Thanks again!

Ed D.
New Orleans, LA

Where’s the Beef? It’s alive, well and living in Wadsworth, Ohio

Many of you no doubt remember the famous words “Where’s the Beef”?   Well in this instance, the beef refers to one of the most massive Roubo workbenches that I’ve seen in a very long time.  It also happens to be our March 2019 Workbench Idea submitted to us by Jerry (Chip) E. who lives in Wadsworth, Ohio.

Chip built one of the largest Roubo workbenches there is (a.k.a. “the beef”) and then fit it with a great leg vise powered by one of our premium wooden vise screw kits.  We know you’ll enjoy our latest customer provided Workbench Idea so here you go.

(Note: For those of you who may not be aware of our “Workbench Ideas” feature – previously known as “Workbench of the Month”, this feature is also alive, well and living on our Lake Erie Toolworks website under the “Workbench” main menu option.  We also have almost 90 workbenches for you to take a look out as well if you are looking for inspiration to craft your masterpiece.)

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Wooden Vise, Vise, Vice

I built my Roubo using 8 ft long 6 X 6 timbers (untreated) for the top, and the legs, that I bought at Home Depot. The bench is 8 ft long, 27 1/2 inches wide, and 34 1/2 inches tall.

I glued the timbers together using wood glue and 1/2-inch dowel rods. I used a router sled to level out the top. The timbers were fairly straight, so at most I removed 1/8th of an inch-high spot.

I cut the large dovetails mostly by hand, using Japanese pull saws, finishing them off with power tools.  They came out pretty good, however I did have to use some wedges to tighten everything up. As I said, the timbers were pretty straight, however the ends were rough.

On the left side of the bench, I removed 3/4 of an inch from the top, about 6 inches in and added a piece of Padauk. I also added a piece of 3/4 inch plywood on the end, under the Padauk, to cover up the roughness.

Similarly, on the right side, I removed 3/4 inch from the top, and also added 3/4 plywood on the top and a piece of 1 X 6 pine on the outside. this side is where I added the first vise. The first vise is an Eclipse 10 1/2-inch woodworkers’ vise.  I mortised under the bench about 1 1/4 inch deep. I wanted the top of the vise closer to the top of the workbench.  This vise is about 1/4 of an inch from the top of the bench. I used 3/4-inch plywood for the cheeks.  I also used thru bolts and nuts. It is rock solid.

The second vise is a Leg Vise. This vise is made from a 1-inch piece of curly maple, glued to a 2 X 10.  It is 8 inches across, 32 1/2 inches tall, and 2 3/8 inches thick.  I used the Premium Wood Screw kit from Lake Erie Toolworks, in conjunction with a Benchcrafted criss-cross.

The wood nut, was mortised about an inch into the back of the leg. I added leather to the insides to protect the work pieces.  The sliding deadman is made the same way, 1-inch curly maple, glued to a 2 x 10. It is 7 1/2 inches wide, 17 1/2 inches tall, and 2 3/8 inches thick.  The stringers are 2 X 6s, I mortised 3/4 of an inch in the bench leg, and in the stringer, used wood glue and 2 3/4 wood screws to attach them.  I then added 2 X 2s on the inside of the stringers, and added tongue and groove as the bottom platform.  I used a router to cut a 3/4 wide by 3/8 deep channel for T-Track. I went all the way across the top in both directions. I’m using Rockler T-track, and accessories. I also added a self-sticking tape measure across the front left of the bench.

As for the finish, the Leg Vise, Sliding Deadman, and top of the Bench, I used 3 coats of Amber Shellac, one coat of Danish oil, and the 3 coats of lacquer.  I wanted a hard surface for the top of my workbench.  The rest of the bench has one coat of pre-stain conditioner, one coat of Golden Oak stain, and 3 coats of lacquer.

Jerry (Chip) L. E. – Wadsworth, Ohio – USA

Wooden Vise Highlights Video, Check It Out!

Just posted a quick Lake Erie Toolworks Wooden Vise Highlights video on our website home page.  If you have a minute to spare take a look / see.  I suspect you might even like the ‘bluesy’ music the video is cut with.  Enjoy!

Lake Erie Toolworks, Wooden Vise, Wood Vise, Vise, Vice, Moxon Vise, Leg Vise, Wagon Vise, Shoulder Vise

2X Vise Equals Fast Moravian Workbench

Quick heads up that Will Myers, the driver of the modern Moravian Workbench style has a new blog site where he has recently posted about his experiences with using our new Lake Erie Toolworks 2X wooden vise on his latest Moravian Workbench build.

Thinking about building a Moravian bench with a 2X Wood Vise, take a look/see at his recent two blog posts that will give you the low down on this front.

https://eclecticmechanicals.com/2018/10/30/its-a-big-one/

https://eclecticmechanicals.com/2018/11/11/its-a-big-one-part-2/

Will Myers, Moravian Workbench, Leg Vise, 2X Vise, Wood Vise, Wooden Vise

Announcing the Lake Erie Toolworks – 2X Wood Vise – Fastest Threaded Workbench Vise On the Planet!

If you’ve been pondering the idea of building your dream workbench but just haven’t been able to settle on the proper vise to use, we have your answer.  Announcing the new Lake Erie Toolworks – 2X Wood Vise – Which happens to be not only the largest wooden production vise on the market, but is also the fastest threaded workbench vise on the planet – be it metal or wooden.

This brand new vise is powered by a massive 3″ diameter screw that has a 1 TPI (1 Turn per Inch) double start thread.  The vise action can also best be described as “smooth as butter”.  This makes for a simply amazing and game-changing workbench vise to help you craft your woodworking projects in record time.

We’ve been building and testing out prototypes of the 2X Wood Vise for quite some time but we’ve always had a challenge in finding a lumber supplier that could provide a stable supply of the huge billets of hard maple.  It must be all that clean living we do, but we’ve finally lined up a reliable source.

Lake Erie Toolworks is now announcing a pre-order special via our website on the 2X Wood Vise if you place your order by July 31, 2018 at 12 PM EDT.

So if you’ve been dreaming of the perfect vise – now’s your chance to jump in, because the water is FINE!

Lake Erie Toolworks, 2X Wood Vise, Wooden Vise, Leg Vise

 

 

Enjoy this Moravian Workbench Rocky Mountain Beauty – July 2018

Will Myers has clearly helped pave the way to assist many woodworkers around the globe who have interest in the Moravian Workbench style to achieve their vision.  Our latest Lake Erie Toolworks Workbench Idea for July 2018 exemplifies this fact spot on.

Thank you to Gerry F. from Boulder, Colorado who built this Rocky Mountain Workbench Beauty from a Douglas Fir tree that came down during a Spring blizzard last year.  For a self-professed amateur woodworker, he did quite the amazing job.

Lake Erie Toolworks, Moravian Workbench, Wood Vise, Wooden Vise, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vice, Wooden Vise

Lake Erie Toolworks, Moravian Workbench, Wood Vise, Wooden Vise, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vice, Wooden Vise

Lake Erie Toolworks, Moravian Workbench, Wood Vise, Wooden Vise, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vice, Wooden Vise

Lake Erie Toolworks, Moravian Workbench, Wood Vise, Wooden Vise, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vice, Wooden Vise

The DougFir tree came down last May during a Spring blizzard. It was too big for me to haul to the mill and would have been wasteful to buck up for firewood. So while browsing for project ideas I came across your site highlighting Will Myers reproduction of the Moravian Workbench and knew that I’d found the perfect match for the log.

I milled the log with a chainsaw mill to the dimensions from Will’s PDF cut list and set it in the barn to dry. The tool chest was something I added to complement the gorgeous vise screw crafted by Nick at Lake Erie Toolworks.

I am an amateur and was happy to learn and apply a few new tricks along the way. It is one of the reasons why I love woodworking. The project took me a month to complete and am pleased with the final result.

Gerry F. – Boulder, Colorado – USA

Here’s an “English Workbench” Idea – June 2018

Here’s another Workbench Idea from Lake Erie Toolworks for you to consider and possibly build.  This English Style Workbench comes to us from Alex W. from West Kilbride in the United Kingdom.

Alex got his design ideas from a mixture of famed Workbench builders Richard Maguire and from Christopher Schwarz.  From these legendary influences, Alex crafted a phenomenal English style Workbench that will provide him with countless years of functional enjoyment.  We trust that you’ll all enjoy this latest workbench idea.

Lake Erie Toolworks, English Workbench, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Leg Vise, Leg Vice

Workbench-Idea---June2018---Web2

Workbench-Idea---June2018---Web3

Workbench-Idea---June2018---Web4

Workbench-Idea---June2018---Web5

Workbench-Idea---June2018---Web6

“English” Workbench

I built this workbench using the design from Richard Maguire’s English Workbench videos and plans as the starting point (www.theenglishwoodworker.com).  Christopher Schwarz has a similar design in The Workbench Design Book but with angled legs and I liked the look of that in giving added solidity so I adapted Richard’s design and changing his face vice to a leg vice.

The leg vice components are clearly from Lake Erie and very impressive pieces of kit they are!  I had some problems with the first screw/nut as the humidity in Scotland caused uneven swelling so that the screw was binding irretrievably.  Nick generously made me a new nut with wider tolerances and that works like a dream.

(Lake Erie Toolworks Comment:  To date, we’ve had approximately 1/3 of 1% of our many wooden vise screws that have gone out to customers have some form of humidity related binding challenge. Rest assured that in the very rare instance you might encounter a binding screw, just let us know about it and we’ll make it right – Just like with Alex featured here.)

The bench top, aprons and leg vice are rock maple the top is 65mm thick and the aprons are 50mm.  The leg trestles are agba.  In retrospect, the bench would have been heavy and robust enough in agba and it would have been significantly easier to work.  The comparison is that planing agba is like taking a hot knife to butter and planning the maple is like attacking concrete with a paint scraper.

Everything is held together with tapered wooden nails and they worked really well once I’d got the idea of allowing the drill to cool down every 5 or so holes.  The bench is finished with Danish Oil – this hasn’t changed the colour much but should protect the wood from some of the bumps and scrapes.

The bench is 2.25 m long, 0.79 m wide and 0.88 m tall.  To give an idea of scale, the plane on the bench is a Stanley 5½. I like the slightly taller bench and intend to add a Moxon vice using the offcuts and spare wood from the bench components.  I’ve no idea what the weight is but it’s very substantial – this bench isn’t going to move!

Alex W. – West Kilbride – United Kingdom

Here’s Another Great Workbench Idea – May 2018

Our latest Lake Erie Toolworks Worbench Idea comes to us from Michael H. who hails from the town of Westford in the Green Mountain State of Vermont.  Michael has built a multi-functional dream of a workbench that serves as a workbench, router table, saw out-feed table, layout, assembly and edge joining table. Now try saying that again three times real fast.  She’s a beauty and we know you’ll all appreciate this latest Workbench Idea.

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Vise, Vice

Lake Erie Toolworks, Roubo Workbench, Leg Vise, Leg Vice, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Vise, Vice

This project started with the purchase of a new SawStop Table saw and when I discovered my very old outfeed table was the wrong height and the miter guides were the wrong width.  I wanted something much sturdier than my old table; I wanted to make better use of the space beneath the table (cabinet to follow), and I wanted a leg vice to compliment the shoulder and end vice on my 35+ year old (and also needing to be replaced) workbench.

A lot of my work is frame and panel so I am often ripping rails & stiles and wanting to re-joint between passes on the table saw.  I reasoned that I could throw a board into a leg vice and run a jack plane over it faster than I could go to the dust collector, open and close blast gates, go to the jointer, run the piece and then retrace my steps.

So, I thought, while I’m at it why not build in a new, more versatile, better dust collecting router set up.  So now I have this bench – an outfeed table, an assembly table, and edge jointing table, and super-duper router set-up. The design started with the Benchcraftted Classic bench design.  I made it 4” wider, spread the legs to accommodate the router and eventual storage cabinet.  Then I added a bridge piece between the bench and the saw to span across the bottom dust collection hose and give myself 48” behind the saw blade.

The bench is made almost entirely from 8/4 poplar.  After I got the top together I discovered I had managed to turn the thing around and had framed in the router opening on the wrong end (mistake #1), so I ripped it apart and re-glued it, but in my haste lost control of the process and had no way to flatten it (mistake #2) so I ripped it apart and re-glued it, again.  Three times a charm, except then it wasn’t as wide as I wanted and I was out of poplar.  I found a piece of cherry that had been living in my shop for a long, long time and it became eye candy trim.  The bench plans called for cutting the mortises in the top and then fitting the base to it.   This required getting all 12 mortise & tenon joints in three dimensions all to come together at once.  I was amazed when it happened!  In a do over I’d build the base and then transfer markings to the top.  I also took the directions to make the holes in the leg & chop 2 9/16″ too literally.  This left only 1/32” of clearance on the radius and made the installation quite demanding.  In a do over I’d go to 2 3/4.  I haven’t yet figured out where I want the holes in the deadman, so haven’t drilled them.

Unlike a “real” work bench I wanted this to be slippery, so I finished it with three coats of good tung oil and then waxed it.  I only leather lined the chop, not the leg.  The casters are from Woodcraft and settle onto a firm base. They provide leveling and easily screw up to a wheel when movement is necessary.

Thanks for reading.  Michael H. – Westford, VT

 

Lake Erie Demo Workbench With a European Flavor

Whenever we attend a trade show or woodworking event we normally haul around our small Lake Erie Toolworks Demo Workbench to demonstrate the feel and functionality of our wooden vises (shown below here with the amazing Frank Klausz in action).  We usually hear phrases like “smooth like buttah”, “fast as lightening” and “holds tighter than two coats of paint” when someone gives the vises a test drive.  The challenge has always been, how best to replicate this very tactile vise experience so that people could try it out.

Lake Erie Toolworks, Leg Vise, Wagon Vise, Shoulder Vise, Workbench, Vise, Vice

Our distributor in Germany, “Dictum” decided to provide this experience to their customers by commissioning a fully functional replica of our demo bench for use in one of their showroom floors in Germany.  The bench was built by Jarek Ostaszewski who also happens to run a successful DIY construction and tool review YouTube Channel called “Domidrewno” in Poland.

Here’s the fantastic end product for your review.

Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Wooden Vise, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Leg Vise, Wagon Vise, Shoulder Vise, Domidrewno

Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Wooden Vise, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Leg Vise, Wagon Vise, Shoulder Vise, Domidrewno

Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Wooden Vise, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Leg Vise, Wagon Vise, Shoulder Vise, Domidrewno

Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Wooden Vise, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Leg Vise, Wagon Vise, Shoulder Vise, Domidrewno

Lake Erie Toolworks, Workbench, Wooden Vise, Wood Vise, Wood Vice, Leg Vise, Wagon Vise, Shoulder Vise, Domidrewno

The workbench is made out of solid beech along with Hard Maple for the vise components and is extremely sturdy and heavy.  It also makes the perfect workbench for people who have limited space in their workshop, garage, basement or apartment but still want a fully functional and robust workbench.

For those of you who have further interest in this type of workbench, here is the link to access a series of nine (9) YouTube videos from Jarek on Domidrewno that will show you how he constructed the bench.  If you don’t speak Polish, you will still be well served in watching the videos to see how he made this great workbench.

If you have any other comments on this workbench that you’d like to share with us, just drop us an email or give us a call.

Best regards,

Jeff Dombrowski – Lake Erie Toolworks