THE WORKBENCH




THE BASIC CONVERTIBLE WORKBENCH

—  For Junka-holics Like Me  —    


•  SOURCE THE BENCH—   They sell them at Sam’s and Amazon, they are metal… and I had one in the garage, used on the terrace for outdoor cooking,  some polish and years of neglect washed right off, like new.  Well, No more cooking on the terrace electric or fire, our HOA ( sometimes called Home Owner Assholes or Condo Nazi’s ) and Fire Department quashed that. It was reborn as my fishing bench.

Later on I inherited twenty perfect black boards ( Brand is Starboard a Tough Marine Poly) from an overrun on a job we were doing.  And Black boards matter  —   I found another shelf grid shelf and added it to the existing one and then magnetic strips, drilled and screwed to ends for tools.

Then from another job I inherited staircase plates in a v shape about six inches long, they became the bases for many of my 1/4 x 20 jigs and holders.   So far spent nothing, all parts were from other projects and in new condition and I had a ton of 1/4 by 20 nuts, bolts, washers and lock nuts. Stainless and alloy.

But like all 8 x 10 foot spaces in your home,  or my condo,  you are limited in space layout.  I need the bench to be flexible and adaptable to four disciplines. 

Battery packs, Soldering mini-computers, Working on Macs and PC’s, Macro photography, Photo Studio for Passports, and Fishing projects, namely making Flies, spinnerbaits, large and small, sabiki, NED rigs etc —   

I wanted wheels not wood this is going in my carpeted spare room not the garage. And I run a carpet cleaner occasionally, very occasionally.

Everything in the room goes on magnetic boards regardless of the job, simply the boards with added steel sections in different layouts.

Whether its Computer soldering on ARDUINO or (and I have it all grounded)  PHOTOGRAPHY and Fishing Accessories.  I have six or so primary boards, basically it allows a convertible room and workspace.  Racks hold specific duty boards not being used.   I use the table in metal as it is grounded from an outlet 

device.


•  Work Area Accessories  — Boards 

  • The boards have advantages — I can change direction in seconds to another project and everything stays in place

  • The boards extend five inches over the edge which allows me more leg room — 

  • I did lower the table thee inches, ten minutes with a simple hacksaw  —  

  • The boards can work on both my extra desk and my workbench  —  Dual Purpose

  • I used common parts from Home Depot, those stair brackets you see on the bottom edge of the board above the red type so two can be linked together with a short 1/4x20 not and bolt — a super strong combination.

  • All my jigs, vices, and holders have magnets for bases… 

  • Most vices and setups start with either a clamp you mess up that fine Victorian table your wife found and paid too much for at an auction or a piece of cast steel or fancy engraved bronze casting you paid too much for.  

  • I had two clamps I got at a junk pile and added my perfection bracket, same for melding two boards and created the duel clamp after a good cleaning and some black KRYLON paint made for plastics and metal surface.

  • With magnets on the fly vices, and bending wire tools  I had either a two vice set up, or one vice with one of my pawns… You will soon see what a pawn is…

  • They were fitted with rubber on the inside of the clamp, so as not to scratch and the “ Clamper” retains all three holes in the top for various accessories… 

I can also hard attach a small vise with no magnet — and two clamps offer tremendous stability,  especially for my soldering guns.


•  Rise Of The Boarders  — 

  • Once again size matters and storage is important when thats all you have to work with and I made four of these extension boards to use on any of my desks or workbench.

  • They double the actual usable working space and create a  focus point.   They allow my legs to fit under and adjust where I want to put  my vices in distance from me

  • The clamps and the width of the opening were made by “ God”.   What did I do to be so lucky to have an absolute perfect size and a perfect fit to hang and tuck under.

  • When in place they do not move…period… tough stuff.

  • 100% leftover parts and tools not being used, now invaluable as far as work are is concerned  The bench provides perfect storage space for the boards.

  • All of my additional accessories, magnet based, work with these boards.

  • Lights for precise work, cell phone holder, spool holders and tools used for soldering, clamps and vices for electronics are happy-happy and singing Kumbaya.

  • In a few years I will make a 1 inch thick heavy plywood top with Formica in wood tones for the bench securing it from beneath with glue and screws. Maybe not for stability, this thing is stable enough but for aesthetics — fly fisherman are traditionalists and must maintain an image.

  • MY LARGE FLY STREAMER BOARD  —  I live in Largo, Tampa Bay  Florida and through friends and boat owners we can tangle with all sorts of creatures things in our lakes, bays, estuaries, intra-coastal or gulf waters.  And when we go into wading the bays, estuaries, inlets and in-shore on the Gulf side we go to streamers.  I made a dedicated streamer board. 
  • I made it double thick from two pieces of Starboard I had, with no-slip feet.  It doesn’t budge — 
  • Topped it with metal plates so different vices can come and go shown above is for tubes working through a pin vice
  • With a sixteen pound magnet the vice is going nowhere but can be swiveled and tilted  —  
  • Craft stores —  Larger heavier threads and big needles that I use to make larger lures —  
  • Tube Mandrel and Tubes — Mandrels for these large tube flies come from felting needles (36 Gauge) and the larger ones…Larger tube mandrels are made from bicycle spokes and Stainless rods shaped.


 •  “THE GARAGE”  VERTICAL STORAGE FOR MAGNETIC VICES

All the vices I have and use with the Little Persons or friends have a place called the garage, again magnetic, or steel plated and built from Black Starboard.  When you can create a workable workspace in a small area and comfortably work each of the different scenarios, it’s a cool feeling. These are teaching level vices for the kids. I took some very inexpensive vices i bought at a store going under for ten dollars each.   I rebuilt them, basically taking over when the folks from INDIA, Pakistan and China left off and  stopped finishing,  crude and cheap.   I re-tapped bolt holes to US sizes, straightened edges with files, the metal is soft, easy to remove, added accessories and retainers, repainted some areas and basically rebuilt them.

My expensive vises not shown mainly get used for delicate fly work, theses are for streamer and “ Big Bug” production and teaching kids.



06/04/2021   aljacobsladder.com 

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