Workbench TWO – Day 22

Objective today is complete the short rails mortise and tenons for for 2nd set of legs.   Start installation of twin vise including cutting clearance in upper rail,  sizing and initial fitting of backer boards for twin vise.

Completing the remaining mortise and tenons for the short rails was straight forward.  Learned a lot on the first to legs, so this went very well.  It is just a matter of trimming with a chisel or my large shoulder plane as appropriate.  Best to take small cuts.   When it sticks look really close to determine where to remove material.

Next was the twin vise install.   I decided to look at the Horvarter website for instructions.   I purchased my vises about 5 years ago and one really great upgrade has been made based on the long term wear that has been observed.   So using the new instructions with things I had learned from the old instructions I proceeded.

The really critical step is locating the mounting blocks.   This sets the pattern for the remainder of the install.   I decided to have 5″ of space outside the twin shafts.  This would give me some end vise clamping as well as the 25″ between the shafts.  Drawing the plan one the workbench worked well.  Remember this is being installed on the bottom of the workbench top, so nothing will show.

The tolerances on this are very exact.   The connecting transverse bar between the mounting blocks will rub against the bench surface.  The instructions state to wax the back of the bar.   I think it would have been really beneficial to finish that surface with a smoother plane.  This would have provided a few thousands clearance and a glass smooth surface.  Since I did not do this, I will sand that space as smooth as possible and apply wax as specified.

The story of the process is in the picture comments, so I will not try to detail here.

A few tools that I used are of interest:

  • Dewalt DWD112 corded 3/8 VSR drill.  This has a level bubble that helps getting vertical holes lined up.
  • Snappy hex mounted drill bits with stop collars.
  • Punch Transfer Set
  • 1/4 drive socket set with 6″ extension.  Available lots of places.
  • Paraffin wax.   Get this at grocery stores in the canning section.

I did have some hand tool fun.   I did not have any dust collection running so was enjoying my Pandora music.  So I decided to cut the slot in the top short rail completely with hand tools.   Crosscut back saw, marking knife, marking gauge and chisels.  This is a common and not exciting process but was fun for me and my continuing effort to hone my hand tool skills.

NOTE: Day 22 will be finishing tenon on short rails, cutting dados in bottom rails and fitting the twin vise..

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Please enjoy the full set of day 21 pictures with detailed comments: