Thoughts on this workbench please?

Hi all
I posted here a few weeks back seeking recommendations for a woodworking bench - I'm still looking!
If anybody has the energy to look, I'd really appreciate opinions on one I've found at http://www.msctool.com - go to Hand Tools -> Benches, then its ref CB1 (unfortunately it won't let me provide a deep-link to the page).
Looks a bit similar but rather more solid than the Screwfix one which was universally panned by the cognescenti here!
Thanks David
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On 4 Nov 2003 11:50:49 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Lobster) wrote:

It really depends on what you want to spend. Weight is also a good clue.
If you can get along to Axminster's tool show later this week then they normally have several on show.
Their benches are pretty good from what I saw and are in a price range of 250 to 350.
Rutlands have Hofmann benches from about 350.
At last year's Axminster show, Brimarc had quite a large display of Sjobergs benches. These are also on Rutlands web site. They have a basic one starting at about 200 which is quite well made but not as heavy as the larger models. I bought one of their cabinetmaker's benches and am very pleased with it. Weight is about 80kg so very solid for doing almost anything. However cost is about 750 for this one.....
I would certainly recommend trying to see whatever you buy in the flesh rather than just buying over the net.
.andy
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On 4 Nov 2003 11:50:49 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Lobster) wrote:

Don't much like that one. Still looks flimsy, and 130 quid isn't a small price.
Design isn't bad, for woodworking. I like the tail vice and double row of dog holes (wish I'd put a double row in my bench, not just the front)
Don't like the drawer. You can put drawers anywhere, but that front rail is a vital clamping location. A deeper L shaped apron (no deeper than a G clamp though) would allow you to clamp vertical things to the face.
Forget the bench dogs (or "sticks" as they appear to be). Useful bench dogs have a side spring, so they're height adjustable to a height low enough to plane over their heads. Round or square, metal or wood (hardwood), but they need height adjustment.
The vices are a joke. Too flimsy to be robust, yet they still have that central screw in the way. Unless you really know what you want (like a Scandanavian shoulder vice), then go for a big cast iron Record or Paramo and wooden false jaws to stop planes hitting the top edge by accident. They're cheap enough S/H.
Board jacks are a nice touch, but I just don't trust its rigidity or the planing stop to be a good planing bench.
Single drawbolt to hold the rails on. That's not rigid enough (believe me ! 8-( )
Lose the shelf underneath. Use the back rail to store G clamps instead.
What do you want this bench for ? How much hammering / planing, and how much vice work ? Do you need an iron vice ?
Can you find something second hand ?
If you could find some affordable timber, could you build a bench with what you already have ?
Have you read The Workbench Book yet ? (most libraries) -- Die Gotterspammerung - Junkmail of the Gods
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(Lobster)

Thanks everybody for the excellent advice as usual. Bummer! back to the drawing board then!
Maybe I'll try making my own after all - really a question of time and convincing SWMBO that it's better use of resources than spending the time fitting that ensuite which has been propped against a wall for X months...
David
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On 6 Nov 2003 00:16:42 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Lobster) wrote:

If you fancy doing that, take a look at www.plansnow.com
They have a number of workbench plans of different levels of sophistication, and you could adapt. All the plans are downloadable PDFs which you can print if you want.
I've used a few of their other plans and bits of them in projects and they've worked well.
For a workbench, getting to a level top and making the thing beefy enough are the main things.
It probably won't cost you less that the 130 quid price that you saw in materials, but you will have some control over the results.
.andy
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On 4 Nov 2003 11:50:49 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Lobster) wrote:

I missed that posting! I've got an Emir workbench in the garage that I also posted on here a few weeks back - it's complete with a BFO Woden vice. I wanted to know how much I should ask for it and I think the general concensus was round the 100 to 150.
I can't use it because the garage is too bloody far from the house and the place I was going to build a lean-to to house it in now has a shed present :) -- cheers,
witchy/binarydinosaurs
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----------- I looked at that type of thing early this year when, after a few false starts, I decided to give WWing a go. I just didn't think they were any use to me. Too flimsy, too light and too small.
So I built my own after getting ideas from the loads of sites with bench plans. It cost me just under 130 for all the wood, glue, screws, cutting to size, delivery and a 7" Record vice. It wasn't difficult and would have been even easier if I had asked the supplier to cut ALL the wood to size and not just the MDF. (I didn't realise they were so bang-on accurate)
This bench is big and weighs a ton. It's 76"Lx28"Wx42"H has 4x4 legs, 3" thick MDF top (wrapped with 4x2 all round) and the frames are made of 4x2 (sides) and 6x2 (front and back) with a shelf underneath and a tool trough at the back.
As I doubt it's possible that your skills can be any more elementary than mine you might consider this a better route than buying something you will regret. (you can make something you will regret ;-) )
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Lobster) wrote in message

For others in the same situation:
You can make a "deep-link", right click on 'Benches' and select "Copy Shortcut", then paste it into your message (IE, Netscape similar I think)
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