Workbench top?

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I have been studying everyones work benches and noticed that most of them are built out of maple. I understand that maple is very hard but I don't think it is readily available where I live (Sask, Canada). Birch is very common here but is it anywhere close to being as hard as maple? Does anyone see anything wrong with using birch for a work bench? Regards. -Guy
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In rec.woodworking

You can make a suitable workbench from planed and glued-up pine 2x4s so I'm sure birch would be quite suitable. Maple is awesome but VERY expensive for a workbench and most of us can't afford it.
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If you have a Grainger near you they will sell you a 30"x72" maple bench top for about $200. I bought one and glued one up. The one I made cost more.
BTW I thought the maple was the Canada national tree or something. Don't y'all have a maple leaf on your flag?
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I checked the Grainger website and they have complete work benches but I didn't see just the maple top.........do you have to go right to a store to buy the top alone? I think there is alot of maple in eastern Canada but not here in Saskatchewan. Do you guys get maple shipped to you from long distances or do you have some locally? Regards. -Guy

top
y'all
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I am in Florida, we don't have any maple around me and that's where Grainger sold me mine. It was pickup. They do have them in the catalog but shipping will get you. These are Edsal products (printed on the box) and you can see them on the Edsal web site. This thing came packaged with the back brace for the workbench, just no legs. They assemble their workbenches on modules. Buy what you want. I am using this as a kitchen island top. The one I glued up was the matching peninsula but it was longer than I could buy and has an irregular shape on one end.
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Grizzly has them. I've never seen them in person, but I've seen them in their catalog. Here's a link.
http://www.grizzly.com/products/item.cfm?itemnumber=G9914
HTH

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I bought two of them. Would do it again, I have had them for about 2 years and they have worked well. I could not have bought the wood and laminated it for the price I paid for the tops, even with shipping.

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What about Windsor Plywood on Miller Ave in Saskatoon. They sell maple :)

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Guy
I got the rough maple for my workbench from the Windsor Plywood in Langley BC. Check with your local Windsor to see if they bring in any there. The wood I got was ~1" thick and a variety of widths and lengths. My jointer, planer and table saw turned it into the top below.
http://www.jenarae.com/wood/workbench1.jpg
Ray

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Ray,
Nice bench. Thanks for the info. Regards. -Guy

I
store
but
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Hey!
Nice to here someone from home............are you from Saskatoon? Do you happen to know what the price of the maple is? Regards. -Guy

bench
more.
Don't
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When I did my bench I laminated maple T&G flooring from Windsor Ply on Millar to a solid core door.
Pics at <http://www.balderstone.ca/workbench/
(Yeah, I'm in S'toon...)
djb
--
There are no socks in my email address.

"Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati"
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what wood was the base made from? Looks very sturdy and usable.
BRuce
Dave Balderstone wrote:

--
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BRuce

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Just your standard SPF 4x4, 2x6 and 2x8, painted brown with an exterior stain.
djb
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"Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati"
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The have a lot of maple ! Standard maple is $8.90 /bf, 'birdseye' is $12.90 (these are Canadian$). They also have a lot of bowl blanks and other turning blanks, all at fixed prices.

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If you're patient and have access to some hardwood pallets and a thickness planer....
There's lots of maple pallets out there. cut them into 2" slats and laminate them up. It'd make a super solid top. Take the time to lay it out properly and make sure you add holes for your dogs before you glue it up (if you're using square dogs).
Jeff
wrote:

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If you can locate an old solid door, 3/4 of your work is done for you...That's what I decided on, at the suggested of my father.
wrote:

anyone
I'm
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I am planning on going the pine 2 x 4 route but I would like to have bench dogs as well and I am concerned about these prematurely elongating. If I were to alternate in a few strips of hardwood at the dog locations would I run into any significant shrink/expansion problems? If so, any recommendation to counter it?
snipped-for-privacy@nospam.com (Bruce) wrote in message wrote:

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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (daryl1138) wrote in message

Some folks recommend lining the dogholes with harder material, or even drilling an oversize doghole, plugging it with hardwood and then drilling your hole centered in the hardwood.
Personally, my top is made of laminated SYP (slightly less than 3" thick) and I have noticed no signs of the dogholes elongating. (I've been using it since February of 2001, so it's not old, but it's seen almost daily use since then.)
I guess it partially depends on how you use dogs/dogholes as well. I don't use them bearing against a face vise, rather I usually use "Wonderdogs" in pairs, or little 6" clamps as hold-downs for planing stops.
You could always start using the bench and see how they wear. If it becomes a problem (most likely in *years*, not months), you could either build your "ideal" bench, or retrofit your current one.
Chuck Vance
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Chuck Vance writes:

But leave us remember, there is pine and there is SYP, which is a LOT harder. Anyone who doesn't believe that should try framing a couple rooms with the stuff, using a hammer instead of a pneumatic nailer. It has been 20+ years, but my hand still aches when I think about it.
Somewhat like framing with red oak, except that with the oak you expect the hardness.
Charlie Self "Take care of the luxuries and the necessities will take care of themselves." Dorothy Parker
http://hometown.aol.com/charliediy/myhomepage/business.html
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