Re: workbench dimensions

Yes and no. I built two benches 15-20 years ago and have not needed another, until today. I was searching around to get an idea of what dimensions others were using (how I came across your post) and from what I see, my previous benches were on the mark. The "Yes" part - you do not want to spend the time building one and constantly wish it was bigger. Its alright if on occassion you find space a little tight, but you want a little extra room. The "No" part - you can build a monster bench that consumes your entire shop or garage, but then you will always be pissed how you have to work around it. One of the benches I built from scratch, with no outside suggestions (20 years ago there was no internet (atleast Al Gore had not spoken pubically about it yet)), is 30' deep and 60" long. The othr bench was built around a pair of industrial work bench legs I got from a going out of business sale, and that bench is 36" X 84". Both are great, but both sit in a different sized location. Most important is to determine how much space you can afford to lose. If the wife cannot get her car in the garage, or has to climb across the bench to get to her car, or you have to enpty half the garage out so you can do any work, you will regret it.
Ran across one web site and they talked about building several smaller benches (24"x60") for a large shop. They can put some or all of them together to construct a custom size bench if they need to, but they can also push aside the ones they do not need at the moment or use them as tables. Good idea if you have a large shop, which someday I hope to have.
For my third bench that I will build this weekend I think it will be 30"x72". I just bought a small farm that has an old 52' X 72' barn on it, so I could build one any size I want. The location I want it in also stores a utility trailer, so I do not want to take up any more space than required, but also do not want to always wish it was a little bigger.
As for height, I see most are listed between 33" and 36" tall. My previous benches were 36" (home brew) and 34" (industrial). I also checked a couple of benches in the warehouse at work today and they were 34". The 34" one I have at home is about perfect for me to stand in front of and work, the 36" is nice for when I sit in the shop chair. The new one will probably be 34" since I don't think I'll have a shop chain in the barn to start with, and I can always toss a 2X4 or a pair of 2X6's under the legs if I ever want it taller (or build another bench!).
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