Workbench - Cutting & Laminating the Benchtop

I started by cutting 2x12 lumber to length, in my case I cut to 5', and then ripped the boards in half to produce two pieces of 2"x5"x5' pieces of lumber.  I skipped the step of planning each board as I couldn't justify purchasing a $500 planner for this project.  I'm using sixteen (16) boards which will give me a bench top of 24" deep x 5' long.
Cut & Rip Boards to Size

Next, I sorted the boards to hide as many of the imperfections in the wood as possible.  I also had a couple of bad cuts where the width of the board wasn't the full 5" and so I'll just hide those on the bottom side of the bench.
Boards cut and lined up for benchtop

Laminating the boards together.  Had I used a planer, the laminating process would have been much easier as my boards were not all perfectly flat or straight.  At this point I had no idea how I would fix this problem, but between YouTube and Google I'm confident I'll find a solution.
laminating boards for benchtop
laminating boards for benchtop
laminating boards for benchtop

Lessons learned from laminating the boards together:
  1. Do not use Titebond Original as I did.  Use the Titebond III formula which will give you more working time to clamp your boards together.  I did my benchtop in five steps of laminating which was a terrible idea.  Other people building this bench have done two or three, but five was a killer especially since I had not used a planner.
  2. I used way too much glue!  I poured it on thick as I was more concerned with getting full glue coverage and I was racing the clock before the glue set up.  
  3. Planning boards is done for a reason.
Wood Glue, Use Type III Formula

Return to Home Page