Poplar

Chuck - Thanks for the info -
With respect to using poplar for the bench top, I guess I wasn't aware that it was so soft. I've been using the panels as a makeshift bench for a couple of months(sitting on sawhorses). They are a little soft, but I figured that they just needed a finish treatment.
These panels were just too good to pass up when my friend offered them to me - they are actually "seconds" from a shop that makes wood coffins - they were supposed to be the bottoms for the coffins.
Maybe I'll use them for cabinets like you suggested, or I was going to make a bench arrangement for my compound miter saw and my future RAS, so maybe for that.
I'm building a table with maple right now. I REALLY like maple, it works good, and has a great appearance. So I think I'll go back to using it for the workbench.
Thanks for your help -
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Nick Bozovich wrote:

I dunno...lots of people make their benches from pine or fir (2x). IIRC, fir is softer than poplar. Put an MDF or hardboard on top and you're ready to go.
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I made my bench top out of press board for the same reason. I don't have to care about dinging the top, getting glue on it. If I ever feel the need, I can flip the top over and start dinging a new top, or replace it at a fairly cheap cost.
Thomas
McQualude wrote:

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McQualude may have said:

If I had a pretty bench it would be afraid of me.
Dick
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Thanks guys -
I think I'm going to use the poplar panels. What's the worst that can happen? I have to replace the top - I plan on making it similar to Frank Klausz's bench (from "The Workbench Book"), with some modifications from Keith Rucker ("Building a Traditional Workbench"), so it should be easy to change out the top. I'll put a good hard finish on it, and not worry about it.
I figure it's kind of like a pick-up if you don't want it scratched, and if you don't buy it to haul wood, gravel, dirt, etc., what's the point? Why not just buy a car instead?
Nick

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