Hand Tools Archive

One doesn't need a fancy bench for hand tool work *PIC*

Bill Tindall, E.Tn.
Indeed there are features on a bench designed and dedicated to hand tool work that make fixturing parts straightforward. However, these features are not essential to get the job done when the focus is to get the job done. A case in point, dovetailing the false top for a chest of drawers.

I built this bench decades ago when the one hand saw and one plane I owned gathered dust on a remote shelf. I am unwilling to invest the time and materials to build another. It is a large 4" slab with two woodworking vises and one machinist vise. The large overhang and my collection of clamps enables stuff to be fastened for any need that has come up to date. In this case it is easy to secure a wide panel for preparing dovetails. Arguably I can mount and dismount a panel in this arrangement as quick and secure as on a traditional bench.

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