Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Videos: Build A Bench With Our Hardware


Image courtesy of Lost Art Press

We're often asked if we'll ever offer a bench building video, or complete videos on how to install our vises. And the answer is, not anytime soon. You may be wondering if this is shortsightedness on our part, lack of interest, or that we're too cheap to shell out the money for a video studio, which is significant. The reason is, there are others out there who can do it better than us. Here they are.

Marc Spangulolo, aka The Wood Whisperer
https://thewoodwhispererguild.com/product/split-top-roubo-workbench/

Marc was the first to make a serious video on building our Split Top Roubo. Marc's video skills and presentation are excellent. You won't find a more comprehensive and easy to follow series than Marc's. For $110 you get almost 10 hours of instruction covering every aspect of the build, and the vise installation, along with printed plans. It's an excellent value. Marc also includes videos on retrofitting a Crisscross and our latest Glide, in addition to the original Glide leg vise. 

Chris Schwarz and Will Myers

In this video ($35) Chris and Will not only build a bench together (featuring our Classic Leg Vise), but discuss different ways of getting there. There's some pretty funny moments too. Definitely worth the watch even if you're not building a bench. 

Guido Henn at Fine-Tools.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZ4doJvy_5w

Guido has two excellent videos (in German) on the installation of our Glide Leg Vise and Tail Vise. Although the videos are in German, they are mostly without narration and subtitles, and the video quality is excellent, providing a clear view of each step of the process. The third video is a tour of the bench, in English. 

Matt Estlea

Matt studies furniture making in Oxford, England. Follow along as he build "Bertha" his Roubo bench outfitted with Benchcrafted vises. Excellent production quality.

KC Woodworks

Some good enthusiast content here. Watch as Kev makes a Hi Vise and retrofits a friend's bench with a Glide. 

Tom Fidgen

Not so much an instructional video, but nice to watch nonetheless. Very relaxing. Watch Tom build and assemble a Moxon vise entirely with hand tools. 

Mike Bandte

An ongoing series of Mike's Split Top Roubo build, in German. Mike also has a series on building our Moxon vise. 

There are many others out there, and a "Benchcrafted" search on Youtube will yield loads of results.






Thursday, June 15, 2017

There and Back Again.........Moxon wood

A few years ago we offered complete Moxon kits, the hardware and all the wood needed to make a complete vise, milled and ready to go.  It wasn't fancy, but all the parts were there to spec and all the holes drilled.  We offered this mostly because there was a demand.

At some point we got so busy we simply couldn't do this anymore, other things were taking our time.  We still get requests though, so in that vein, we are now offering these kits once again.  The new kits are a shade nicer than the old ones, still made from hard maple but these are finished just a smidgen better and the stabilizer batten now comes glued up to the rear chop.

So here wee are again, the complete kits are ala cart on our Store page.


Unsolicited Plug

We don't really plug other products much.  But on occasion we like to toot a horn about this or that.

At Handworks recently we met Janet Switzer of Camp Robber canvas.  We immediately liked her wares and started thinking of things to make.

One of the things on the top of our list was a flat bottomed satchel in heavy duty waxed canvas for the trunk of our cars.  I shot her some dimensions and within a week (!) had a bag in my hand.  Not only was it spot on what I had in mind but it is built like a tank.  I can't imagine it ever wearing out.  These would make an excellent tool bag.

Her Instagram is here and her Etsy store is here.






Video: Swing Away Seat



We shot this short video to show our new Swing Away Seat in action. We have them in stock and ready to ship.

Further details here.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Lost and Found: temporary post

We're going to leave this post up for a short while only.

Someone left a camcorder battery (looks to big for an SLR) on our bench at Handworks.

If this is yours let us know.



Monday, June 12, 2017

Swing Away Seat Instructions


We've uploaded the installation instructions for the Swing Away Seat. We offer some tips and guidelines for installation, as well as fastener recommendations (which are not included with the seat.) We suggest you read up on the installation while waiting for you seat to arrive so you can have your hardware in house when the seat arrives.

Download the document here.

Also available on our downloads page.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

New Mag-Bloks

A week of new stuff in our Store page.

Brand new Mag-Bloks, Quartered White Oak, Quartered Sycamore and Spalted Maple now regular stock items.  Clockwise from upper left:  Quartered Sycamore, Spalted Maple, Quartered Oak.



For Sale: Fresh Classic Workbench


We have for sale, for immediate delivery or pickup, a freshly-built-to-spec example of our Classic Workbench. Made of hard rock maple (rock on!) it's outfitted with our Classic Leg Vise, Planing Stop, Hand-forged Holdfast, and Swing Away Seat. For full specs, see our Classic Workbench Plans page.

This bench was completed a couple weeks ago on May 15, displayed in our booth at Handworks, then placed back in storage. The bench is in the white, that is, we didn't apply any oil/varnish shellac to any of the surfaces. You can either leave it that way or apply a finish of your choice (we hope you leave the top unfinished, or at most one thin coat of oil.)

The bench is assembled entirely with in-compression-for-eternity drawbored mortise and tenon. It's as solid as humans can make it, short of growing a tree in the shape of a bench.

The bench is available for pickup near Cedar Rapids, IA (contact us for details) or white glove delivery, in which the bench is wrapped in moving blankets, transported in a moving van used for furniture delivery only, then unloaded at your address and brought inside by the delivery techs. The first time you touch the bench will be to use it. It costs a bit more to ship this way, but less than you might imagine.

Price is $2600. Delivery fees extra. Contact: info@benchcrafted.com SOLD

Now Available To Order: The Benchcrafted Swing Away Seat


After over a year of development, we're excited to announce our Swing Away Seat is available to order. To read more about the development of the seat, read this.



The Swing Away Seat is cast in gray iron and powder coated in satin black. When you buy the seat you'll receive two castings: the larger part called the mount, and the smaller part which bolts to your bench, called the bracket. You'll also receive two black oxide-finished steel pins that marry the parts together. They are loose pins, just like you'd find in a door hinge. So if you need to remove the mount from the bench for whatever reason, you simply lift the two pins and the mount comes off.

Mounting the seat to your bench or table is easy with two 1/2" lag screws or through bolts. Bolts are the stronger option, and if you've got 3" or less of wood to bite into, we recommend bolts. Lag screws, driven into properly-sized pilot holes in hardwood are extremely strong. However, since we can't control your mounting situation or skills, we can only make general suggestions. As such, the Swing Away Seat does not come with mounting hardware. Be wary of hardware store and home-center lag screws. They are usually total junk (but  not always) with soft steel and shallow threads. We source ours from the excellent Blacksmithbolt.com. The 1/2" square head lags in black oxide work very well with the Swing Away seat. We also recommend their rub washers under the head of lag screws for a smooth connection. These aren't so necessary with through bolts. For further installation info, download the Swing Away Seat document from our downloads page.


The Swing Away seat is  available two ways. Castings only, for us woodworkers who want to make our own seats, or packaged with a finished, ready to mount wood seat. The wood will be offered in one species only, quartersawn white oak with a chestnut stain and satin lacquer finish. The seat is 11" in diameter and ~1" thick. Each wood seat will include three screws to attach it to the mount.


Like our vises, the Swing Away seat is overbuilt. We haven't done any testing on how much weight the casting can take before it breaks, but our empirical knowledge tells us its more than anyone need worry about. Since the seat is cantilevered off its mounting surface, one does have to be mindful of the mounting structure. Obviously a free-standing structure could be prone to tipping, depending on the weight of the structure and the sitter. Again, there are lots of variables at play here that we can't possibly anticipate. Our Classic Workbench (pictured here) is not a super heavy bench, being somewhat narrow at 20" with a 3" thick top. Yet it supports a 250 pound body (me) without tipping. If you're planning to use one of these on any free standing object, keep this in mind. Again, see the installation document for further details. The Swing Away seat will pivot a bit over 180 degrees.

The Swing Away Seat is $199.

The Swing Away Seat with quartersawn oak seat is $249.

You can order through our Store Page.






Tuesday, May 30, 2017