Paul Jenkins (aka VikingCodes) Roubo workbench

Paul Jenkins, aka Vikingcode, has only been woodworking for 15 months and he took on the challenge of making his very own JWS roubo style workbench.  

Despite not having the full range of tools and having a few arguments with his equipment he pushed on and look at the result! A beaut looking bench that will serve him well!

Paul also produced a series of videos outlining a few of the changes he made from the original design.

Paul Writes

I took up woodworking about 15-16 months ago now, so this workbench took me a little bit longer than I expected despite good/clear plans. Just the scale of it made it slow work.  Not having the full range of tools also made it a bit trickier – no jointer makes pinus bunningsus timber painful to work with as it continues to warp if you look at it funny.

And it was also this project that really highlighted how poor my bandsaw is which sadly I didn’t really discover until things were glued up. Turns out it cuts ‘straightish’, but the fence doesn’t stay straight. Or stay put – the clamp mechanism on the fence drifts. Unfortunately the result of that was less than perfect fits for my tenons, meaning the bench doesn’t sit as well on the legs. That being said, the sheer weight of it meant I didn’t need to bolt it down (although I did) for it to be rock solid.

As it stands, I’d say its probably 90% finished. I’m yet to install the guide wheels for the parallel guide (although I have one constructed!). A better shelf needs to be added (scrap pallet grade plywood was nearly perfect size, so screwed in without trimming properly). I also need to finish flattening the top – I’ve got it about 90% of the way on that, but unfortunately really “needed” to use it so chucked some poly on to seal it. Turns out it was a good thing I did, as the next time I used it to help a friend with a small project, he spilt shellac and water all over the top.

Like you, I used jarrah for the end cap but I also used jarrah for the vise chop. I had some spare “rubbish” jarrah with large sap veins in it that would have been useless for furniture but I could cut around for the vise. In the end I’m glad I opted for the matching  tail vise – I think the green on jarrah has a sense of symmetry for both vises. I’m sure it doesn’t function any better but at least it keeps me sane!

One of the more unique features I have on my bench is casters that flip down to move around rather than the workbench resting on them. I share a garage with a car, so more often than not I need to move the bench out of the way.
At $87 they’re pricey, but they were the difference between me being able to fit a workbench in and not, so I think the price was worth it. My bench was a little shorter which saved a little bit of money too – in the end, I think it tallied about $300 for castors, vises and timber.

Thanks again for the plans and detailed videos – they made a very big difference for my confidence in tackling this weighty project!

Great Project Paul

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