Looking for thoughts on bench tops

Discussion in 'Garage & Workshop Forum' started by 68bucks, Sep 5, 2019.

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  1. Sep 5, 2019 #1

    68bucks

    68bucks

    68bucks

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    So I came across some old library tables and I am going to use the tops for the tops of the workbenches that I'm building. They are solid maple 1-1/2" thick. I sanded one down to bare wood and cut it to size. I'm pondering what to do about a finish on them. I have been thinking about just using butcher block oil on them rather than a poly type finish. What have some of the members here done for their bench top finish, any suggestions?
     
  2. Sep 5, 2019 #2

    oldognewtrick

    oldognewtrick

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    What are you going to do mainly with them, build ships in a bottle or rebuild engines on them?
     
  3. Sep 6, 2019 #3

    Brian Famous

    Brian Famous

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    Are you talking about a garage workbench that you're throwing tools on, or are you drilling some bench dog holes or throwing on an end vise? I don't have any finish on my workbench, as the first four letters are w-o-r-k. So that's what it is there to do.
     
  4. Sep 6, 2019 #4

    68bucks

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    This will be a work bench. I'll put a vise on it, throw tools on it etc. It won't be for crafts or anything like that, it's a bench in my shop. I'm leaning to keeping it bare so if it gets sort of beat up I can just sand it a bit to clean it up.
     
  5. Sep 6, 2019 #5

    Brian Famous

    Brian Famous

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    For a work bench, i think leaving it bare is the right decision.
     
  6. Sep 6, 2019 #6

    oldognewtrick

    oldognewtrick

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    I took an old solid core door and had the metal shop fold a galvanized metal cover for it. Takes a licking, keeps on ticking. When it gets beat up enough I'll get a new cover. Spills cleanup easy.
     
  7. Sep 6, 2019 #7

    bud16415

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    For a wood bench I would rub some linseed oil (Raw) into it and call it a day.


    I wish I found something like that it would become my kitchen island and the garage workbench would get a sheet of plywood.
     
  8. Sep 7, 2019 #8

    rbm328

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    when i built my garage/shop work bench, i built it 4'x8' and for the top i used a sheet of 1/2" ply and then laid on top of that, another sheet of hard board.
    my thoughts were, when the top gets beat up beyond its life, i unscrew 10 flat screws and replace the top. you can even purchase a full sheet 1/2" A (orB) C ply,
    rip in half and you have your workbench.
     
  9. Sep 8, 2019 #9

    68bucks

    68bucks

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    Thanks for the ideas. I like the idea of maybe something in top of the maple as a sacrificial surface. Or at least on some part of it. All together it will be about 15' long. I have a smaller table that I think I'm going to use for a desktop sort of a thing. Something lower you can set at with a regular chair. That piece is 5' long. The original tables were 3' wide. I thought that was a little too deep for a bench so I ripped it to make a 30" depth and used the drop as a backslash sort of deal. I think it will work out nice.
     
  10. Sep 15, 2019 #10

    billshack

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    I did the same thing
     

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