Author Topic: Finally, bench build is under way.  (Read 7655 times)

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Offline rrinker

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Finally, bench build is under way.
« on: April 10, 2016, 01:58:57 am »
 Finally had a (mostly) free weekend to get my new dual-use bench built. Well, 2 weeks ago I managed to cut up all the wood, but today I started assembly. Overkill, maybe, but 1x lumber I didn't feel would be strong enough and we don't get anything in between a 2x2 and a 4x4 like those perfectly sized posts Dave uses. SO 2x4's it is - standard wall studs in the US, for those from other places.

Here's the design, L shaped, left hand side is for electronics, right hand side is for models. The shelves are for gear. And then the framing for the left side, mostly built. You can see behind it one of the solid core doors I am using for the top (yes, it's all very heavy - but the tops will come off). The right side will only have 3 legs and will partly cantilever off the left side. The two sections, and the tops, will all be attached with screws so I can take it apart to get it out of the room should I need to move.





 

Offline GreyWoolfe

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2016, 02:52:50 am »
Nothing wrong with 2X4s.  That's what I used for my 8' long bench.  I added 2X4s on 3 sides near the bottom and 1 going across towards the back to add a storage shelf.  Then I added 4 vertical 2X4s spaced evenly across the back to provide support for the adjustable shelves.  It was a pain to get from the garage to the office through the house and that was without the 3/4" MDF top and the 1/2" MDF shelves.  I don't intend to move as I don't want to move that bench again.
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Offline Brumby

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2016, 06:29:53 am »
We don't use 2x4's in Australia.  We go for 4x2's.   ;)
 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2016, 05:12:55 pm »
 I could always build it out of railroad ties....   :-DD :-DD
 

Offline MarvinTheMartian

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2016, 11:09:52 pm »
We don't use 2x4's in Australia.  We go for 4x2's.   ;)
Brumby is correct - they are much stronger!  :-DD
Reviving my old hobby after retiring! Know so little...only one thing to do...watch Dave's videos and keep reading the forum! ;-)
 

Offline GreyWoolfe

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2016, 12:12:12 am »
We don't use 2x4's in Australia.  We go for 4x2's.   ;)

Isn't that because you are upside down?
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Offline MarvinTheMartian

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2016, 01:04:15 am »
Quote from: GreyWoolfe
Isn't that because you are upside down?
Exactly, it has to carry our weight as well as the test gear while we hang on for dear life! :-DD
Reviving my old hobby after retiring! Know so little...only one thing to do...watch Dave's videos and keep reading the forum! ;-)
 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2016, 01:52:59 am »
 Got the first section frame finished today, and first coat of paint on the top part of it. Hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to flip it over and finish the first coat of paint. The frame is just satin black latex enamel, nothing special.

 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2016, 01:30:58 am »
 Doh!  :palm:  Got the bigger section all done, two coats of paint - and realized I left off the middle leg (seen in the 3d view -0 it holds up the right hand green shelf support). Now I have no place to attach that shelf support to. I suppose I can still stuff it in. I guess I didn't notice because with just the 4 legs it is incredibly sturdy. I finished up the 3 leg section for the short side today and was wondering why I had one more piece cut that I wrote "leg" on - well, there it is.
 The two short edges of the doors have information stenciled on them, luckily it sands off easily. I picked up some satin finish polyurethane today to coat the tops with. 3 coats of poly on all sides and it's time to find some help to bring up the main section (those doors are HEAVY - frame is lightweight, considering it's all 2x4's) and I can get started. Short side frame needs its 2 coats of black paint, and the second door needs to be cut down to size and poly'd. Still need to pick up shelf rails, brackets, and the shelves, and a power strip.
 Then I need lighting. I was thinking that if I make the second shelf deeper than the first shelf, I could run some high brightness LED strips under it to light the work surface. Another strip under the table for floor lighting if I drop something.

 

Offline Shock

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2016, 10:55:09 am »
I'd consider these for LED lighting, I like the solid bar type better, they need a headsink but you can pick up something that will work for that as well. Buy, assemble or design a PWM dimming DC supply and even more efficient.

http://www.ebay.com/itm//252176672484
http://www.ebay.com/itm/171518138290

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Offline Shock

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2016, 11:07:15 am »
By the way, I'm not sure how you are anchoring the shelves onto the desk but if you are going to use those uprights it might pay to take them all the way to the floor.

If suspended it may be a problem, I hope you have calculated what will take the burden of the weight.

Soldering/Rework: Pace ADS200, Pace MBT350
Multimeters: Fluke 87V, 117, 27/FM     >>> Fluke 51/52 Thermometer Parts Required <<<
Oszilloskopen: Rigol DS1054Z, Phillips PM3065
 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #11 on: April 19, 2016, 07:51:45 pm »
 Hmm, those heat sink bars could double as a reflector/shield so the light shines down on the surface and not in my eyes.

I haven't calculated anything, but the uprights effectively do go down to the floor, being bolted (it has to come apart in case I need to move it all) to the legs in 2 places (each upright) with 1/2 bolts and fender washers. It will be plenty sturdy (at least 50% of the upright will be below the table surface) for the intended purpose of holding my digital scope, couple of multimeters, power supply, and some component drawers. Nothing heavy will be stored on there, and the heaviest thing (power supply) will be on the lowest shelf, the highest level will have nothing much more than drawer units full of components.

 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2016, 01:56:54 am »
 Progress continues, I may be able to set up the first part next weekend. I got 3 coats of polyurethane on the top side of the long side, need to let it dry for a few days so I can put a coat or 2 on the bottom side just to seal it. The frame is set to go, and the frame for the short side of the L now has 2 coats of black paint. The uprights for the shelves and the misc. spacers and the all-important leg I forgot to install also have been painted.

 

Offline GreyWoolfe

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #13 on: April 26, 2016, 01:01:41 am »
rrinker, looking good so far.  It looks like it's built like the proverbial brick s**thouse.  I hope you get many years of enjoyment.  When I built mine, I didn't get fancy and paint it as it is in my office, which no one goes in.  After seeing what you are doing, I may rethink the painting thing the next time I take some time off.
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Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #14 on: April 26, 2016, 12:13:46 pm »
 And I thought I wimped out by not making like fine furniture... had it been made to stay in the basement I probably wouldn't have bothered to paint it, but since this room sees multiple use - there's already two computer desks in here plus a stand that holds me desktop and server, with the laser printer on top (yes, the one I'm building will fit too, I measured it - not twice but about 5 times), AND if guests overflow the other spare room, an air mattress or two go on the floor in here...  It is indeed strong - so much that I left off the critical middle leg on the bag, not needed for support of the table but kind of needed for the shelves, so I do have it ready to stick on now. I wanted tough - the computer desk I am using now, I've had for over 25 years, and it has moved at least a dozen times now, yet still is solid and wobble free - and of all things, it was one of those build it yourself from a flat pack of pieces things, got it at Staples way back when. Not sure what this thing is made from, but it is not that cheap chipboard garbage for sure. It's also quite large, but not big enough for computer stuff, trains, and electronics (and I do household stuff here as well, like paying the bills) so enter the dedicated hobby bench. I plan on getting at least the long side installed this weekend, as long as I can get help carrying the top up - solid core doors are HEAVY. Need to place an Amazon order for the monitor arm, anti-stat mat, and ISOBAR power strip. The holdup on the rest is cutting down the door. It's one of those "never did this before" things that I drag my feet on. I know I will have to reconstruct the edge at the cut side - it's a 'solid' door but the inside is supposedly just some high density particle stuff that is loosely held together. I just hope I can build  new edge using the limited woodworking tools I have. It just needs to hold together, it is the edge that will butt up against the long side, so it doesn't have to be super nice.

 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #15 on: April 26, 2016, 05:13:06 pm »
Easy way to do that is to cut the length of the door, then if you are in the core simply use the saw and the spacer to slit the core awayf rom the veneer, then strip the veneer from the end block. A few passes down to strip the core out slot by slot, or use a router to do wider cuts, and then glue the end block back in the slot.

Done that a lot with hollow core doors, though there it is a lot easier as the cardbosrd core is easy to strip and compress into the door further, and then a lot of wood glue and some panel pins or staples to hold the end in place till the glue dries. Often had to do it to put in the correct edging to make a double door set. When doing that definitely do not forget to add in a much bigger filler piece for the locset to be recessed into, the one that typically is in the door is normally too small for the double door furniture.
 

Offline GreyWoolfe

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #16 on: April 26, 2016, 06:16:30 pm »
rrinker, my bench will support a lot of weight also.  It can support me easily and I carry WAAAAAY more weight than I should, but I am working on that.  I thought solid core doors were actually solid wood, that's disappointing.  The top of my bench is 3/4" MDF 33" by 8'.  Talk about heavy.  No one was home when I finished by bench so I had to drag the frame into the house, thank God for tile and no carpet.  The MDF was a bitch to get in the house and in place by myself.  I didn't make my bench to be able to be taken apart and moved.  It is where it is and there it will stay.

As far as fixing the edge, when I cut a hole in the hollow core door to my stepdaughter's bedroom to make a cat door to keep the dogs out of the litter box, I used 2X2 scrap out of the garage to fill the gaps and give strength to the hole.  A length of the same should work for you, I used Gorilla glue and my brad nailer to secure the wood.  You shouldn't need more than a hammer, saw, glue and maybe a couple of clamps to hold the strip in place while you secure it.  Looking forward to seeing the finished product.
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Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #17 on: April 26, 2016, 06:41:17 pm »
 Thanks for the suggestions on how to finish the door after I cut it.
I had considered MDF for the top but I don't have a table saw to cut it, nor do I have any way to get 4x8 sheets of anything home. It would have been cheaper, even if I doubled it up to make a 1 1/2" thick surface. The biggest reason I didn't go with MDF is that it really needs a finished edge, and the easiest way to do that is to rout out strips of wood to fit over the edge. Miter cuts on the corners, no problem, I have a miter saw. But no router - guess I should rectify that.

 Sadly, no, solid core doors aren't necessarily solid pieces of wood. Really expensive ones may be, and old ones are - I looked for a while for used ones, the hole for the lockset would have been a good way to run cords down, but all the ones I could find had raised panels of some sort or another. These are solid - mostly. If you knock on it, you can tell it's not hollow. But it's just a thin veneer over some sort of MDF type material - I'll see when I cut the one open. I plan to anchor the top in place with some screwed on L brackets from the bottom - but I am pretty sure I won't be able to lift the thing by the top, lest the screws just pull out. But it will be enough to keep the top from randomly sliding around.
 

Offline GreyWoolfe

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #18 on: April 26, 2016, 07:33:39 pm »
I only have 2 small 'L' brackets for the same reason.  The bench is heavy enough to make it hard to lift without the top and shelves in place.  I probably don't need the brackets between the weight of the top and the weight of the stuff on top of it but I had them so I used them.
"Heaven has been described as the place that once you get there all the dogs you ever loved run up to greet you."
 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #19 on: April 26, 2016, 07:56:16 pm »
 Hmm, I may have too many then - I think I bought 3x packs of 4 for both sides. I wasn't planning on using them all, but clearly 1 pack may be plenty for both parts.
 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #20 on: May 01, 2016, 03:57:51 am »
 All finished up, well, the electronics side. Now need to clean up the space upstairs where it will love and carry it up. ESD mat and monitor arm should be arriving sometime next week.

These photos show the shelves test fit (the verticals are not bolted on tightly - I used lock nuts so I do not want to screw them all the way on until they will be left on) and the top is actually upside down (the bottom is showing) from flipping it over to seal the bottom side with poly. I have some paper towels under each corner to keep the nice side from contacting the black paint of the frame and getting it stuck on. All in all, I'm happy with the way it came out and it should be enough room to do what I want to do.


 

Offline GreyWoolfe

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #21 on: May 01, 2016, 04:07:58 am »
Sweet!  :-+ :-+
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Online Marco

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #22 on: May 01, 2016, 04:49:22 am »
The biggest reason I didn't go with MDF is that it really needs a finished edge, and the easiest way to do that is to rout out strips of wood to fit over the edge.

Putty and sanding worked okay on my ugly desk made from stacked pieces of trash quality plywood with ridiculously rough sides (ugly because of my lack of skill and patience rather than the puttied sides).

Quote
Sadly, no, solid core doors aren't necessarily solid pieces of wood.

Over here generally 4 cm plywood.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2016, 04:51:12 am by Marco »
 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #23 on: May 01, 2016, 10:26:35 pm »
 Well it's finally up and installed in my office, and my gear is finally deployed.

Let me tell you, this cheap solid core door may not be solid 'wood' but it sure is heavy. Glad the second section will be about 2/3's the weight since it has to be cut down, the full length would not fit in my space. However, here is the electronics side in all its meager glory - the Tripplite Isobar is one with a remote switch which I have installed under the left hand edge of the desk so I can switch everything off with one master switch. It's not attached to the bench top, but I may do that to make it easier to plug and unplug things. On the bottom (actually bench top) there's my Xytronic fume extractor, the IsoBar, and my Xytronic soldering station. On the first shelf is my HP E3610A power supply, Siglent SDS1102CML scope, and Fluke 45 multimeter. Next up is some misc stuff, a slide scanner, my DMMCheck reference, some probes, and my cheap knockoff logic analyzer. Up top I have a digital picture frame that I want to try and do something with, since it won't interface via USB with Windows 7 or higher, but it does have slots for CF and SD cards. In the far corner is my computer, with the display on the desk until me mounting arm gets here next week. I have an anti-static mat also coming next week.
 Missing is my Fluke 8012A and my magnifier lamp, neither of which I can find at the moment. The drawers alongside have some stuff stored, which needs to be cleaned up so I can make room for my Arduino kits and parts. I also have several small parts drawer units to line up along the top shelf.

 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #24 on: May 01, 2016, 10:29:42 pm »
 I have a reel of RGB LEDs I picked up cheap, so I did some testing, on full white, a strip of them along the underside of the bottom shelf lights the work area quite nicely. A similar strip of actual white LEDs should do even better. And then I will also run a strip along underneath the bench so I can see if I drop anything on the floor.
 I'm pretty pleased with how it came out, now to finish the other half.

 

Offline GreyWoolfe

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #25 on: May 01, 2016, 10:45:03 pm »
I went big on my lighting, at least the half of the bench for soldering stuff.  I got an EnviroLight 6 bulb 4' LED fixture from Home Depot.  $139 shipped.  12,000 lumens with an effective 10,000 lumens output according to the specs.  I just added a switch and power cord.  Expensive, I know but I didn't want to try to cobble something together that may or may not do what I wanted.  The other half of the desk has 6 T5 fluorescent bulbs-192 watts against 75 and the LED fixture blows it away.  I plan to get another and get rid of the fluorescents.  The side of the bench where I do company equipment repair has light envy.  At least I can get a non reimbursable business expense since it is for my home office.
"Heaven has been described as the place that once you get there all the dogs you ever loved run up to greet you."
 

Offline Brumby

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #26 on: May 02, 2016, 07:48:49 am »
And then I will also run a strip along underneath the bench so I can see if I drop anything on the floor.

 :-+

There are days when I think I wouldn't need a switch for something like that.
 

Offline rrinker

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Re: Finally, bench build is under way.
« Reply #27 on: May 02, 2016, 12:45:48 pm »
 Haha VERY true. The model building side is getting that too. I probably work more with tiny bits on models more than electronics, even a 1/8 watt through hole resistor is bigger than many of my model detail parts. Those glass diodes though... About the only SMD I do are the resistors to put on the axles of my train cars to activate the signal detection - I figure to have a couple hundred cars, with 2 resistors per, so I just bought a part reel of them. When I was making the first batch, if one of those little buggers popped out of my tweezers I gave a cursory glance at the floor and if it stuck out I picked it up, if not, I just used another. Probably vacuumed up half a dozen once I packed up and vacated the place.

 


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