Making a new worktable.


H-M Supporter - Silver Member
H-M Supporter - Silver Member
Nov 7, 2019
Quite the deja vu on that design! :grin:

So, this is probably the sketchiest way I've EVER run any kind of machine.
X and Y via g-code and Z via my powerdrill(Had to use both hands when raising due to the torque)

But now both plates are finished.
This is the outermost plate and has threaded holes in the middle and along the outer edge for vices, fixtures, whatever I want to attach temporarily.
IMG_1206.JPEG .

I've also made some progress on the frame.
Nothing is glued yet because I've done the mistake before, gluing too early.
I'm fixing everything together with screws and reinforcing with dowels which should also help locate it when I start gluing it together.
I find it really difficult to get both lap joints perfect and also the overall height, so I left everything a bit long and then used the laser to cut it level.

With it leveled off, I just laid the top on to get a feel for how square everything was, and it's not far off to be honest.
Good enough considering that I haven't been very careful building this.
The top is just sitting on top right now so I made up some special dowel markers so I can use 15mm dowel rods between the standing studs and the top.
Will further reinforce everything once I have all of this glued and also the plywood sides/back/bottoms in place.
The left one is sitting in a 15.25mm hole just to be clear. :grin:


H-M Supporter - Silver Member
H-M Supporter - Silver Member
Nov 7, 2019
As usual I found a reason to play with my machines.
Squared this block of plastic up, I think it's acrylic.
Milled some slots and drilled through with the dowel drill.
Easy to use drill guide for the dowels, made drilling the "legs" super easy.

Table is slowly coming together, aligning all the legs for marking, drilling etc takes some time.
They all have some slop to them so I'm trying to align it as I lower the chonky table frame down ontop of the legs, gets a bit tricky.


H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Sep 28, 2013
very neat, that'll be a great addition to the shop when you're done!


H-M Supporter - Silver Member
H-M Supporter - Silver Member
Nov 7, 2019
Thanks! Yeah, it's a key piece in how I want to re-arrange my shop.:D

Slowly making progress on this, many other things going on so I'm only spending an hour here and there.
Wasn't quite satisfied with the inlayed plywood panel, I could've gotten the fit tighter but it should still provide large amounts of stiffness.

Either way I took everything apart, applied tons of glue and slapped it back together.
The weight is really starting to add up and it feels plenty stiff.
Bottom is to the lower left corner of the picture on the right, the front is pointing towards the roof.

With the frame pretty much done, I turned to thinking about leveling feet.
I bought a whole bunch of hockey pucks a while back and figured I'd put them to good use.
Spun them in the lathe to do some cutting on both sides.
On the underside to make sure it's sitting on a larger footprint and not just "on the middle".
The topside I made a small cutout for the steel washer, just to easily have it centered.
It was quite difficult trying to grip something so soft in a 3 jaw chuck with bad reach, threw one out of the chuck at 1600rpm, luckily they're ... soft .... :grin:


Active User
H-M Lifetime Diamond Member
Feb 17, 2013
Maybe wear a goalie's face mask when you're machining the pucks? :)

Anyway, that's turning out to be an INCREDIBLY stout work table. Maybe even strong enough to set a car on top!


H-M Supporter - Silver Member
H-M Supporter - Silver Member
Nov 7, 2019
If nothing else, it'd look hilarious. :grin:

Managed to finish the feet today.
6 steel pads with a nut welded on, each nut is basically just sitting with 2-3 large tacks since 99.3% of the force will just be pushing it up towards the steel plate.

The frame has been drilled to the same diameter as the rods behind the nuts, this ended up giving the rods an incredible amount of stability at the only cost of making them slightly resistant to turning(you can just barely rotate them by hand due to the friction against the wood).
The rods has one nut welded on to provide a larger surface area against the steel on the pucks.
Only downside of this setup so far is that there's nothing keeping the pucks on the rods, couldn't come up with an easy solution for this so I'll just live with it.

And one finished foot.
Wrench goes on the nut closest to the puck, this rotates the threaded rod which can then be locked by screwing the "middle" nut towards the steel plate.
Hopefully I can flip the whole thing over tomorrow and start planning drawers!


H-M Supporter - Silver Member
H-M Supporter - Silver Member
Nov 7, 2019
Got some more machining done today.
I want the calibrated granite to sit on 2 solid mounts and a seesaw on the other side, I've heard/read that this is a good idea to reduce the risk of twisting the plate, considering the wooden frame might not be perfectly flat or "dead".

Remembered I had this big hunk of steel from my last scrapyard hunt and started removing everything that didn't look like the rectangle I had in mind. :grin:
So. Much. Angry. Chips.


Just a quick PSA, don't use cheap taps.
Whilst annoying, I could just turn the piece over and drill/tap from the other side.
I did spend a while trying to get this tap out but it was in there pretty good, considering how misaligned the hole is, it wasn't a big loss.
Used a high quality tap on the other side and it was like cutting butter...

The seesaw then sits like this in the bench, supported on 2 bearings(old and used but still feel fine) and a 25mm shaft.
The seesaw has a small grub screw underneath that locks it to the shaft to make sure the bearings do the work, I do however doubt it would ever slip and will just sit stationary 99.9% of the time either way.
3D printed washers making sure the bearings can't walk off the shaft and also 3D printed some feet to support the plate.
Will add some felt or rubber between the plastic and the granite at a later time.

Since I can't leave 'good enough' alone I decided to cut some corners, literally.
One side went great, when I cut the other side I quickly got reminded of that broken tap ... Luckily the endmill was already pretty worn so it wasn't a big loss when it obliterated itself. :grin:
Swapped over to a 12mm carbide insert endmill instead, the import inserts are cheap enough that I don't mind trashing a few if it comes to that.
Once I had gotten enough of the tap out I could go back to a HSS endmill and clean up the surface before smoothing all the edges over with a flap disc.
I'm pretty pleased now! and should be able to install the granite once I have the other 2 feet. :grin:
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