Wednesday, March 07, 2007

My future workbench

I'm planning to move my hobbies down to the garage (apparently the dining room table is for eat on) so I starting scoping out a place in the garage to fit a workbench. Shopping online didn't turn up anything that would make good use of the space I had so, I figured, why not build my own?
First things first, I had to design it. Most engineers would immediately start up their CAD program, but I didn't want the fork over a couple grand on a overly complicated program that would take me a week to use. Luckily it turns out that Google makes a program thats FREE called
SketchUp that does exactly what I want. One of the neat features is that you can upload your models to share them with all the other SketchUp users. Here's the file for my workbench. Notice that I have casters on the outside. There's a hinge on the wooden flap attached to the casters that allows the wheels to flip up when the table is lifted. This makes the casters extend below the legs of the table, hence movable. When you're done, flip the wheels back and you got 4 sturdy legs to stand on again.


Juanjo said...

Thank you, I made your idea and works fine

Juanjo said...

Sorry I forgot to mention that you can see it here:

Anonymous said...

That's awesome. I ended up finishing my workbench according to my design too, but I have to say yours looks even better!

One thing I think I should mention is that when the casters are up, the angle that they are at exposes the swivel mechanism to sawdust and other debris, but if you mount a small plastic shield around the swivel that should keep out all the gunk.

DairyStateDad said...

i'd really like to do this but I haven't been able to figure out how you do it (Is there more to the file you posted at Sketchup that shows it step by step or anything?).

I am building a model railroad consisting of 4 separate sectional tables. I've already built them to the desired height and belatedly decided at least one, maybe 2, need to be easily moved every day. So casters on the bottom won't work, because they'll raise those sections 3-5 inches higher than the rest. Your solution looks perfect.

I will link to your page here from my blog,

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I don't have the step by step, but I can describe how I made it.

Everything is fastened w/ #10 screws. I predrilled, and countersunk each hole to prevent the wood from splitting.

First, I made the 4 legs by forming 2x6's and 2x4's into an L shape using #10 screws. Then I cut the top stretchers and fastened them to the legs. This is easiest done if you try to assemble it upside down.
Next you need to make figure out how high to set your bottom stretchers. They must be low enough so that when the casters are down, the casters will hit the ground first, but high enough that when they are up, the casters and the blocking that they are attached to will not hit the ground. Once you determine the height, mark the location on the four legs and attach the bottom stretchers.
The caster assembly is very easy. It's just a 2x4 sized to span the distance from stretcher to stretcher (including the stretches themselvs) and two hinges that attach this 2x4 to the shorter stretcher. You can see this in the sketchup if you look from the bottom up.
I made some cleats from 2x2's to fasten the top. The bottom shelf was just cut to size and put in place.

DairyStateDad said...

Thanks for responding! I got it now.

Very clever design.

I might end up just putting casters on the bottom of the legs of my sections, but this is really a cool idea to consider.