A woodworking bench is a simple table used frequently by woodworkers to hold woodwork while they work other tools on it. There are several styles of woodworking benches available, each reflecting either the style of work to be carried out or the skills of the craftsman. The size and weight of a bench can vary according to the purpose for which it is intended. Some benches are simple affairs, intended only to carry out small tasks such as a few nails or small screws. Such a bench would not be suited for heavy jobs involving several pieces of wood and nails.
Bench vises are used to support benches of different sizes while allowing work to be completed much more rapidly. Vices attached to the underside of a bench vise are moved by an attached lever that changes the amount of weight the vise can support. The weight range of a vise is usually between four and twelve pounds. Many woodworking bench vises come with a shelf attached, allowing woodworkers to keep small tools within reach. A shelf also allows maintenance of small items such as nail sets and small but vital wood shavings from dropping onto the floor.
Veneers and legs are added to woodworking benches in order to finish them, and to allow them to carry out their duties better. Wood veneers are applied over existing wood surfaces using solvent or alcohol, and allowed to dry before the final coating is added. The coating is sanded and then fine-toothed, to create a smooth surface that is almost unbreakable. This gives woodworkers greater confidence in their woodworking bench vises, since they know that it is almost impossible to break them. The finish added to wooden veneers is very hard, as it has to overcome the natural tendency of wood to swell.
Most woodworking benches have a hole at the bottom, through which the work piece fits into. There are several styles of this, depending on the size of the bench. Some benches have one large hole, while others have two holes of varying sizes, one above and one below the hole. To use the piece correctly, it is important that you use the correct bottom hole. If the bottom hole is too small, the woodworking bench may not fit properly, and the woodworkers hands could become injured.
Tool storage is another concern for many woodworkers. Bench dogs are simply pieces of metal or plastic that sit under a bench and help keep stored tools safe and out of reach of children or other people. Bench dogs are sometimes made from steel, and are available in a wide variety of colors and patterns. There are bench dogs for every work piece, whether it needs to keep its tools out of the way, or is simply a plain piece of plastic to add to the aesthetic appeal of the woodworking bench.
Another common piece of equipment for woodworking benches is the bench clamp. The bench clamp is a simple, adjustable device that attaches to the top of the woodworking bench and holds the work piece in place. Many woodworking bench clamps are slip-on or push-on, so there is no need to worry about finding special tools to fit your bench clamp. All young children should have a bench clamp when they are learning to use woodworking tools, because the risk of them catching an object in their mouth or getting an arm or hand injured is extremely high. Some young children who are learning to use a woodworking bench may have difficulty reaching the tools with their fingers and may accidentally pull a tool instead of pushing it away from their grasp. This simple device can go a long way toward preventing that possibility.
When looking at benches for use in a woodworking shop, it is important to think about bench height. The ideal height for woodworking benches is that which allows young children to easily reach the top. The height at which the top of the bench is dropped does not need to be extremely high, as even six or seven inches off the ground will be sufficient enough to protect young fingers and prevent accidents. You may also want to consider benches with drop leaves. Drop leaves are pieces of wood attached at the bottom of many workbenches, extending several inches below the top edge.
Vices and Furniture Items. Some people enjoy decorating and creating beautiful furniture, while others simply prefer to make things in their own woodworking studios. If you feel that your studio needs more than a few tables and a bookcase, you might want to consider purchasing a small, versatile vise. A small vise is useful for many different woodworking applications, such as for holding small, flat items, like tools, in position. The wooden vise is a great addition to any woodworking bench, and young children used to eagerly anticipate having their favorite toy, like a block of wood, stuck on the end of the vise!