Workbenches Book – Updated version

Late last year, an updated version of the book Workbenches, from Design and Theory to Construction and Use book from Chris Schwarz was published by Popular Woodworking.

I bought the first edition and my copy has seen from mileage, where some parts of the cover has had a hard time.  The good thing is that it seen some use.  I can’t remember the number of time I passed through the different sections before I committed to build my workbench, which is heavily inspired from the French Roubo bench in the original copy (which is still in the updated edition).

I did buy the updated copy and here are the reasons why :

  • it received updated sections on work holding options since the original publication
  • new workbench designs included
  • One of the contemporary ressources on Workbenches

The read permitted me to review some of the decision I made a few years back on my workbench.  Also, some of the updated work holding are pretty amazing and the review section that passes through the best uses that each are best for is very detailed, once again.

So once again, if you are looking at building a workbench, seeing the different options in work holding, this is still your book.  The examples in the book do cover workbenches that do a lot and can tackle a lot of tasks.

Agreed that it will not cover all the tasks and some appliances are covered to add to current workbenches.  They can be built to add to current builds and can supplement current benches.

Once again, a very good book and one that I will probably read a few more times in the very near future.  There are a few updates I would like to tackle on my version of the bench I did.  Few components I would like to redo better.

Probably the best thing I can give here is to have a sable work surface.  I decided to look/build a new bench because I started to work with hand tools and the workbench I had did not cut it.  Read the book and if you decide to build, all the workbenches in the book are very good to tackle most if not all your tasks.

If you decide to buy commercial, you will have all the material to look at what is on the market that will suit your needs.  You will also have all the necessary information on what to avoid in certain bench.  Or at least, maybe compensate with some appliances to do what you want with your bench.

Bruno Quesnel

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