Power Tools

  • Table Saw
  • Router Table
  • Jig Saw
  • Impact Driver
  • Track Saw
  • Spindle Sander


  • 4/4 Cherry
  • 3/4" Birch Plywood
  • 3/8" Birch Plywood
  • 1/2" Birch Plywood
  • 1/2" Pine Plywood
  • Ikea Gerton Beech Butcher Block Table Top
  • Iron On Birch Edge Banding

Bits & Blades

  • Flush Trim Router Bit
  • 3/4" Core Box Bit
  • 3/4" Round Over Bit
  • 1/4" Round Over Bit
  • 1/8" Round Over Bit
  • 3/4" Drill Bit

Hand Tools

  • Flush Trim Saw
  • 1/4" Chisel


  • 24" Over-Extension Drawer Slides (Qty: 15)
  • Incra T-Track
  • Screws

For several years, I assembled all my projects either on the floor of the garage, or on top of my table saw. I would roll out a large sheet of craft paper on top of my saw and do my best not to get any glue or finish on the cast iron or fence rails. Unfortunately I wasn't always successful and there are now several splotches of finish on my fence that will forever remind me of the days before I made myself a proper assembly table. If the project was too large to fit on my table saw, I would have to rig up some precarious setup of saw horses and support stands to do my best to keep the workpiece assembly from crashing to the floor.

A large workpiece supported by a few sawhorses in the garage. There must be a better way!

The plan. Large torsion box top, bank of drawers and two large cabinets.
Along the back, some long shelves to hold large off-cuts of wood.
In addition to additional work surfaces, I also desperately needed some outfeed support for my table saw. I was completely fed up with the hassle of having to set up work stands alighned with the saw every time I wanted to make a cut, and even then, I was constantly running into issues with the wood getting caught on the lip of the stands, or having the apply way too much downward force to keep the piece from tipping back off the end of the saw. Having a large outfeed table is simply a must for safe table saw usage. It's so much nicer to have the piece effortlessly glide onto a large surface and be fully supported throughout the entire cut. The cut quality is noticeably better since I can be much smoother in feeding the wood through, and it is definitely a much safer way to work.

I wanted to make my bench as big as possible. Since I only have one half of a two car garage, I don't have a ton of space to spare. The only real requirement was the outfeed table needed to be large enough to fully support an 8-foot board through the table saw. Other than that, it's basically just defined by what will fit in my garage. The width it about the same as the width of my 36" table saw and the depth is about 43".

The design for my bench is a torsion box top, based on Marc Spagnuolo's assembly table plans. Since mine is a fair bit smaller and will be right next to my table saw, I motified the base design heavily to only have drawers and cabinets on one side of the workbench and use the other side for some wood offcut storage. I also needed this to work as a general purpose woodworking bench, so workholding needed to be addressed as well. My plan was to place 1 face vise and a t-track system for clamping work to the top. I never ended up installing the t-track, but it is still on my t-do list.

The torsion box gridwork. 1/2" MDF grid on between 3/4" sheets.
The laminate top flush trimmed to the top.
The torsion box construction is done exactly as described in the Fine Woodworking article linked above. It didn't end up being perfectly flat though, so I dunno what went wrong, but it's certainly "flat enough" and it hasn't caused me any poblems. I opted for a laminate workbench top instead of hardboard since I figured it would look better, be more durable and be easier to keep clean. After several years of use I believe all those points to be 100% correct. I beat the hell out of the workbench top during the construction and assembly of my projects. It's survived dragging all sorts of wood and tools across the top and spilling glue and finish everywhere and it still looks almost brand new after a quick cleaning. Glue and finish pops right up with a razer blade, and a quick spray of windex will clean it off and back to new condition. As an added bonus, I can take notes in pencil right on the top of the bench and when I'm done just wash them away with some water. It's really a fantastic top.

As durable as the top is, I still want to make sure it's replaceable in case it ever gets irreparably damaged. To do this I just screwed down a 3/4" piece of particle board and then glued the laminate to the particle board. If I ever need to replace the top, I can locate the screws with a magnet and simply unscrew the top and put a new one down. It'd be a bit of a pain in the butt to find all the screws, but hopefully that's only like a once-every-10-years operation.

The vise I installed is basically the cheapest one I could find at the time. It's a Yost cabinet vise off of Amazon. It's okay. It has a huge amount of racking, so getting a good hold on pieces can be a challenge, but it's workable. I recently purchased Andy Klein's Twin Turbo vise that's still sitting in a box waiting to be installed. Hopefully that vise will be more pleasant to use.

The finished workbench.
Cleaned up and ready to support some wood.