I'm newbie looking to build a built-in bench for my third project. Here
are the (free) plans I'm using:
I've already made a small modification to the plans by adding dadoes to the
2 side panels so that the bottom panel fits snugly into place.
As you can see at the bottom of the link, the plans call for a cross brace
to be attached to the top of the sides to support the bench. I don't feel
very comfortable with this design, however, because the cross braces are
attached to the sides only with glue and screws. Can you guys recommend an
alternative (i.e stronger) method for providing support to the top of the
If you are worried, you can always add some metal brackets and more screws.
I built a bench not too different and it has held up for 30 years now. I'd
not change a thing. It looks very strong to me.
A couple of ideas come to mind:
1. In each corner, add a post of the same thickness as the top braces and
glue / screw them into each corner so the braces now rest on the 4 posts.
2. At the end of each of the braces (labeled F) add another cross-brace like
part G except it is not let into but rather makes a butt joint with the F
part. Screw the braces together. Now glue / screw those cross- braces to
the side panels. I don't much care for that idea but it's another way to do
I don't see a vertical panel in the middle of the bench on the web site -or-
did you mean that you're thinking of adding one for strength? If so, no I
do not believe you need any more support. That bench is over-built already.
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