How to Make a Workbench Episode 2 | Paul Sellers

How to Make a Workbench Episode 2 | Paul Sellers

when you’ve got your trestles in place
your laminated top ready to go you might want to work on the underside
because this will ensure you don’t damage the top all I’m going to do is
clamp here and clamp here you might spin this around you can put it elongated
underneath whatever you want you just have to try and experiment with it to
get it to its optimum performance level I’m going to try this and see how it
works I don’t know yet but I think this is going to work for me it feels solid
there you have the problem so I’m going to just try something else just stay
with me just for a minute spin this one around this way and elongate it but just
to see if this helps me and if it does I’ll be ready to work on my next stage
which is planing up was that already because I’m going to be planing in this direction it means that it’s going to be more stable for me so that’s one thing I
thought about doing another thing is I’m going to be working on the apron boards
first I’ll be doing the well boards also when you’ve got this underside here
you could just simply drive a screw in here like this and use that as a stop
this is the underside it’s not going to be seen
drive to screw down till it’s about half an inch protruding but that’s up against
it and we’re ready to surface plane this one board I’ve got one side that’s nice
and flat but this side was rough sawn but I’m gonna go with my plane
that’s my scrub plane and I may want to use that and take off the surfaces
first unless you’re skipping over the undulation
just like when we did the bench top so I work this down just the same way until
I’m through the saw marks through the saw kerf and then I sight again for flattening it’s got a belly in the middle we got to get this flat we got to get this fairly straight and we’re gonna check it in a minute
just for wined I wined down now through all the saw kerf the belly in the middle good
workout for sure and would I do much more than that
probably not because when you’ve planed this surface this goes against the the
benchtop when we glue this together so that’s all I need
so I’m going to do the edge next to make sure that works and it’s nice and true
square so if this I can cite one edge to the other or I can go for my winding
sticks the winding sticks will be more accurate probably especially if you’re
not used to it yeah I do have a little twist in there I do want to take some of
that twist out just to make sure I don’t put too much pressure on this later and
that’s good I’m happy with that so now I’ve got to get the edge done pretty simple I’ve got this one this one
so It’s sitting on the bench this time here I’m going to clamp this one to the
bench top just to stabilize it really I need the square so if you’ve got a jack plane it’ll help you but the
smoothing plane will do it I’m looking to get this as straight as I
possibly can but I’m also the more important would be to get it to get it
square there’s enough flex in this type of wood so that if it’s not perfectly
straight if it has a slight belly on the sail on the narrow one on this one one
will pull the other to it and that would be perfectly fine you don’t have to
worry too much about it get the main body down and then back the
iron off just kiss off those fibers and then check yourself a little bit high on
the outside here consistent so I’m gonna place my plane on this side but I don’t
cut by planing over I just run the plane along this edge here it’s just a little awkward. I feel like I didn’t move that much at all good good so I’m happy with that we’re gonna make a mark this one here
face mark face edge and then I’m going to work on the next one exactly the same
way and I’m going to bring those two together marry them up and then glue
them so I’m ready to try this see how well
we’ve done no guarantees it’s much easier when you can edge join the two
together but when it gets this big it’s not quite so easy because you don’t have
the width in your plane and then offer this and I’ve got a definite Ridge here
which can be to your advantage if you have a gap here than a gap here I’ve got
one already completed there and I did the same with that and that’s why I have
three clamps on that because it’s what we call a spring joint where we allow
this edge the belly on one edge so that when we clamp the two together we can
just use three clamps but this is a little bit too much I’m going to work a
little bit to check myself and that one was good I remember that so I’m gonna go
with this one it looks pretty good too but I can see it this is fun
this should be as fun as any part in it getting everything tweaked and enjoying
the process stay square let’s give that a whirl let’s give it a try see what we’ve got
minor gaps can be clumped out remember so don’t over stress on this feels good I’m happy that that will clump fine so
take this off see if I feel the same when it’s lying down it’s all dependent
on whether the edges are square as well let’s put a clamp across here I’m going
to dry clamp it first just to see what I’ve got one awkward clump here better to dry
clump it see where you end up I’ve got my gap here so when I pull these two
together hopefully this will pull it you’ll see
how it looked see it doesn’t take anything it’s not even five pounds of pressure to
pull this long edge together without gaps I’ve got a perfect seam along here
I’m perfectly happy that’s what we want so this next step is very simple we are
going to I’m going to get rid of these clumps here and use them and really like
I said if it’s if it is slightly ballad in the middle you probably will manage
with two three clamps zigzag and glue along this is so exciting we’re getting
aprons together we’ve got the laminated top together good to go really getting
this ready for other elements to come together joinery stuff lik e that down here just to seal off the edge make
sure we have a continuous glue right along this edge and then I rub jointing
jointing take it apart we are good bring this up flush we still haven’t finished
surface planing we’re going to be planing this again afterwards at the
later stage not just now after this is glued up everything’s dried we’re
going to go back in surface plane to get the joint line down everything flush and
so on a little bit of pressure not too much because that will cause it to slide
if you put too much pressure on up to this end you can lie this down on the
bench top – this is working just fine for me whichever way you feel
comfortable will work so I’m gonna put this on the bench top now so that’s
closing up my joint line a little bit of glue this is flush this is flush the middle section is not
flush you can add more clamps if you want to but this is gonna be adequate
for me and then we’re gonna pound here because this is not flush there’s a good
nut to pound on and that’s it so its flush cinched it tight give it a couple of seconds leave it for 30 seconds and then go back and
cinch them again just to make sure everything is tight wipe off the excess
glue because it will harden and it will be hard on your plane and also this will
speed up the drying process inside great we are good leave it overnight preferably great I’m gonna cut my legs to length and in my
case I know the length the height of my bench I know the length of the leg
is 34 and 3/8 that’s the height that I want my bet that will be part of the
calculation for the height of my bench but you may want yours an inch or two
taller just make your legs longer and cut them off later depends on how you
work it out so mine are 34 and three-eighths I’m going on two edges and a
flat face this is how I’m gonna do it I’m gonna crosscut warm face here I’m
following this flat face this wide face here now now I’m going to spin it to
here so I’m keeping my saw in the kerf to keep it square down into the adjacent
station so now I’m down into this face there’s not much left in here now this is the underside of my bench but
I’m gonna bring this over here just to clear the saw look at that I’ve got a nice clean cut
my second one I’ll take this one I’ll use this one for my pattern now
and I’ll mark all the other three off this one and cut those to lengths
plane them surface plane them that’s what we do next we’re ready to surface plane the legs
I say surface playing we want them to be true so I’m going to true at one face
and one adjacent edge make sure they’re straight make sure they’re not twisted
make sure that one edge is square to the next the other two adjacent faces are
less important because we’re going to use these two reference faces for all
our layout so I’m going to surface plane this first one here’s a white
face just so its smooth and then I’m going to check it for twists because if these faces
are twisted then the chances are your leg frame will be twisted and that’s why
we have to work this down to get it right let’s see how it is for twist
winding sticks make sure these are centered on don’t leave one over one
side because it’ll tilt it a little bit of twist thankfully not much so I’m high here and the winding sticks they do
exaggerate a twist this fits into this four times so it’ll be exaggerating that
twist four times so remember that don’t think you have to take a lot off if it’s
rocking like that take this slide this underneath here and hopefully that will
stop it rocking it’s a good workout no twist that’s great that’s wonderful now
I can use this as my registration face my first registration face so I’m
looking at these pieces this looks like an easy enough face both of them do I’m
going to make this my face mark come onto this edge and surface plane this
eyeball it this one has got twisting even before I start so I can even take
remedial action for that with my improvised scrub plane I hope so I want
to use this to take out some of this rough a cut face here so eyeball one end to the other till it
looks closed and then I can go with my winding sticks well with my smoothing
plane too – I’m gonna take this with a heavier Cut here we’re now working parallel
across my surface to get through the saw kerf I was equally across the face one side
to the other I’m going to use the
winding sticks but I could just use the square because I have that registration
face but this is quicker and I’ve got that twist out so I’m happy with that
now this is where I checked myself Square and I’m out of square I’m high on
this side I’m going to go with a heavier plane this is the advantage when to use a
jack plane here just for a little bit of extra weight really I got my foot
going down to the trestle leg I use the back leg for that one and I’m over
there just to give me a little bit of extra stability and there is my square I’ll be
glad when I have a bench because then I’ll have a place for everything and
everything in its place now I’m square I’m happy with that face mark onto this
edge here and then I’m just going to simply plane
up the additional face as the other two faces get them smooth get them level like this and I will check the widths
after I’ve done this to make sure I’m parallel to the opposite face that will
really help me to know that I’m parallel every inaccuracy has a knock-on effect a
domino effect it affects the adjacent piece so 2 and 3/4 2 and 3/4 that’s 1/32
under 2 and 3/4 but I can live with that next face here got hump in this one this
one’s straight this one’s got a hump in it so I’ve got to deal with that here’s
my back leg my heart is beating beating beating
beating heavy cut there too heavy backing off my iron I’m gonna live with
this because this was part of the pallet I’ll show you a nice bench when I’m done check my width again see how well I’m
doing so I have got 3 and 3/4 a 64th over 3 and 3/4 ters 32nd over 3 and 3/4 a
32nd over 3 and 3/4 of 32nd over I’m perfectly happy with that this is a
bench perfect great

100 comments / Add your comment below

  1. I love to see the use of shavings as a rag. I'm a mechanic by trade and use dead grass or mulch as a rag or a brush in a pinch on a regular basis. Great tip for saving on rags. Use what you got! Love your videos!

  2. Paul you wouldn’t have slept for months if you had seen how twisted the wood was that i made my work bench legs out of!
    I didn’t have a plane (still don’t caus you did not let me win;) so i had to work around the problem, used small bits of wood here an there
    to try and compensate for the twist on all four legs.
    It turned out realy good and stable, it’s not kind on the eyes but it works realy well. 🙂

  3. I love this series so far. I enjoyed the Masterclass one too but this is in your new workspace so building a new workbench is perfect. I also have your book and these videos are great to watch to see just how to build your own bench. I’ve started mines and I’m planing the bench top today. 💪🏻 Looking forward to seeing the final product Paul. Thank you again for your videos. I’ve learned a lot from you.

  4. Paul, I noticed to have two of the Spear & Jackson saws, have you set one up as a rip saw or do S&J sell a rip saw?

  5. Paul do you ever use a straight edge to check for true length wise, or do you just sight for true? If so what's the trick to doing that?

  6. What I love is that you time lapse the other three legs. They don't miraculously appear. Can't wait for episode 3. Hurry up please, I'm planning my man-cave and I am impatient.

  7. Joy! Thank you for changing my life Mr. Paul Sellers. I'm a veteran high school teacher, multiple degrees. Yours is the best all around instruction I have ever seen. I love being an amateur beginner, a thorough and expert and knowledgable one, thanks to you! Woodworkers, unite.

  8. This is the second time i see Paul building a bench! Cmon guys! Who keeps stealing Paul`s benches? 🙂 Fantastic video! Can`t wait for the next episode!

  9. Forget this…. I'm going back and making his original bench. This looks like too much work for my lame level of skill, lol.

  10. Your skill levels are obvious but, thanks for taking the time to explain and break it down so we have a chance to follow along, even something as simple as a work bench becomes a beautiful thing in your hands, m

  11. On a slightly more serious note … Master Sellers, You have NEVER put out a video that I have been disappointed in. You ROCK!!! :=D :=D :=D

  12. It amazes me that 10 people at the time I viewed this that was so appalled by this video they took the time to press the thumbs down. Paul's videos are AWESOME. Just wondering how many people take the time to do that I just turn a video off if I don't like it.

  13. Seeing Paul struggle a bit with planing on those wobbly trestles really shows how important a good solid bench get be. A work surface and work bench are not created equal. I delayed getting a solid bench in my space and certainly regretted not doing it sooner once I got one.

  14. If you are "perfectly happy with that" (a 32nd over) then maybe I need to be a bit more satisfied with 1/32 here and there my self on a project like this. Perfectionism is quite tiring. I can't tell you how many pieces I've tossed from being 1/64 under. I can see the need for exact measure on cabinetry, but "This is a work bench". I could watch you work all day if I didn't have other things that had to be done. Your style and mannerisms are so relaxing and informational. Thanks Mr. Sellers.

  15. I haven't been watching for a while, and apparently missed something. I heard him say he needed a bench, a place for everything, and everything in its place. What happened to the others he had?

  16. A tremendous amount of physical effort from a master, just to bring this knowledge to us. Thank you Mr +Paul Sellers

  17. Mr. Sellers, loving the 1440p 50hz footage. Could you do a series that is a compilation of times you made errors or had unforeseen circumstances and how you got around solved them?

  18. And yet another great video, this is like a TV series where you have a cliff hanger at the end of each season, but in Pauls case, it's every episode. Bring on episode 3,

  19. I like how Paul Sellars name is being used by other u-tube posters on their woodworking videos " This is the way Paul Sellars does it ". There is more and more of them doing this all of the time.

  20. I just had a thought that it would be hilarious if throughout the videos he made he would alternate the color of his beard hair and head hair just to mess with the audience. One scene he would have a gray head and brown beard and the next scene have a gray beard and brown head. He could even just randomly switch them through the video just to fool with the audience. This would kill!

  21. @Paul Sellers What would be the disadvantage of ripping and laminating good plywood for the top? I’m in need of a bench but due to an injury I need to keep hand planing to a minimum.

  22. Hi Paul I have a question I have acquired some poplar trunks now I have them home in the garden I am unsure how to store them 1 so they don't rot 2 so not to waste any yield many thanks jay

  23. Not everybody will have one but a much longer plane would make sense here because you want the edge straight as well as square for gluing.

  24. I'm really enjoying this series, and the use of hand tools is giving me hope for my little garage workshop. Because I'm childish, every time you said "I need to check myself", I thought "…before I wreck myself." Happy New Year!

  25. How critical is the timber thickness for the aprons? Would old scaffold boards (38mm thickness when new) be good enough? Might need to lose a couple of mm to plane the surfaces to a good finish. Also thinking of using for the rails and the wellboard (which would be thicker than specified int he cutting list). I can get some good used scaffold boards that haven't warped, and have already done most of their shrinking. Any views?

  26. is it possible/easier to use a 1.2m level to check for twists? btw, i really can't believe these vids are free!! thank you so much!

  27. Hey Paul.

    Thanks so much for doing these videos. They are all great.
    Quick question, though. As an owner of all of those beautiful stanley number 7's, or 8's, and the other wood planes, you choose to flatten the top with what looks like a number 4. Is that by choice, just expedient for the situation, or do you think it works better in that situation. I am getting into wood working more now, but don't want to spend a small fortune on tools that are not needed.



  28. I’m just amazed at your ability to make square cuts with a hand saw. I can barely do that with an electric saw. Woodworking is definitely an art form. Thank you for breaking this down for us newbies. I love this design… trying to figure if I have the room in my garage. Does anyone have issues with warping in damp weather? I live in an area that rains a lot.

  29. Hey Paul, I can’t help but wonder: is that pine you’re using to make this bench? I’d like to make my own and I can’t really afford hard woods to make a nice sturdy bench, so I’m wondering whether it’ll be a nice bench if I just use a soft wood.


  30. Hello Paul ..
    Why do use only hand tools despite of the vast variety of power machines which will speed up the process of prodution!

  31. Doesn’t it create unnecessary stress in the wood when you ‘clamp out the gaps’? Or does the glue unify the piece enough to not worry about it?

  32. Thank you very much, I restored a rusty plane by watch your video now I'm learning how to use it by watching this video.

  33. Good job on the apron board but you did not use a number 7 or 8 plane on the apron in its rough state please explain thank you.

  34. I hear Mr. Sellers talking more about perfection being the enemy of proper in these more recent videos – I guess the goal of perfection has taken the place of making things and getting a job done?! I always enjoy his down to earth attitude, honest humor and wisdom – were there more like him the world would be a better place!

  35. Mr Sellers, I watch over and over this series of videos. Absolutely amazing. I can't get enough of it. I would like to ask you. What is the total height of this workbench? Also what is your height?

  36. I'd buy any deodorant brand this man advertises… he doesn't seem to break a sweat in over an hour of planing, nor does his shirt get stains.

  37. Dear Mr. Paul with the condition of today life style living in apartments , needs to make smaller workbench which is strong and to be able to disassemble into pieces that can be fit into the trunk of the car. God bless you , I learn a lot from you.

  38. I know this has been a year ago, but maybe you will see this. My question is why didn't you use your No 7 Stanley on the bench your making?

  39. I had a thought, but maybe it will cause the wood to split: Put a very thick dowel every so often on the edge joints, and then put a draw pin perpendicular to that from the wide face. Probably off set less than is normal otherwise it might split the wood. Or maybe a wedge perpendicular to the grain would be better in the first dowel?

  40. 26:28 "I'll be glad when I have a bench…" LOL Just wondering how many benches Paul Sellers has made, and most likely still owns as they are made for a whole lifetime as he every time points out when he makes a new "how to make a bench" video series!

  41. What a pleasure Paul…I'm a newbie to your channel. Excellent work all the way through the process on working the reclaimed wood to usable pieces for what is beginning to look like a workable woodworkers workbench. Now, repeat that (10) times after me! Lol…
    I see no jug of water for hydration with respect to all the manual labor involved…
    Bill on the Hill… 🙂

  42. Do you ever use hide glue in shop projects? In many cases it beats wood glue in duration and strength…provided the shop roof doesn’t leak too badly..

  43. My leg length is just right, thank you….or as Abraham Lincoln once said when asked the length of his legs..”Just long enough to reach the ground”. Well if good enough for HIM! It’s certainly good enough for my bench!

  44. I enjoy seeing the experience behind the choices you make and the precision that you plane and cut with. I stopped woodworking over twenty years ago, and have been hesitant to get back into it due to the high costs of the machinery, and also for the fact that I use two large rooms indoors, as I have a carport, rather than an enclosed garage. On top of that, power tools scare my cats so for years I've been putting off the mild itch to make saw-dust.. Watching you, I wonder if I could slowly build up a good quality collection of hand tools and attempt to achieve a decent level of proficiency? That sort of thinking raised my level of enthusiasm up yesterday, after watching the first of this series, but then I happened to look at Lee Valley Tools – and the shockingly high cost of outfitting myself with good. tools. I do not want to shop for bargains to restore on ebay etc. That seems a hobby in itself, which would delay my quest to make shavings and build skills which I may or may not ever develop. Are there any brand names of planes and saws that you would recommend that have good quality but reasonable prices? I'm a former tool and die maker, so I know what goes into good hand tools and instruments, and understand steel, but I also know what it does NOT cost to manufacture, and when branding turns to silly Veblen predation. So, are there still good quality brands of hand tools that don't cost more than power tools? Would a budget of two to three thousand dollars over a year or two, to get outfitted for my interest of strip planked canoe building – be at all reasonable in your opinion and if so, where to start? It's Canoe building or Brewing beer as a new hobby. Both seem relaxing, but the wood working as you practice it is definitely better for the waistline. 🙂

  45. Man I love watching him work and I’m attempting a bench like this now and so far I’ve learned… he makes this look super easy!!!!

  46. I am having trouble sourcing the wide board for the apron. Any alternative ideas? Can I laminate 3 or 4 90×45's (2 x4) to achieve the same thing?

  47. Thanx for this series. I have started to make my own but will be a really small one for one of my larger tools. To practise 😁. I am thinking of connecting the legs with thru tenon with a angled hole. So you have to split the top of the leg and use a angled peace to lock it in place. Could you tell me in what angle the hole shall be cut?

    Best regards

  48. I rather think I prefer the plywood bench . Lot less planing and probably flatter anyways.Much easier to do tenons and mortises as well.

  49. Almost like Catch 22.Planing without a proper stable bench is extra difficult.Just for beginners try using the brick wall to resist the planing action . Just clamp a board to the trestle and keep it in contact with the bricks . Equal and opposite forces .

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