The Garage Makeover Series is back on track! Sort of. Once again, I am going a little out of order. Part 3 was supposed to be the installation of the drywall. While we did manage to get the majority of that project completed this weekend, the workbench was finished last week and I already had the blog post cued up and ready to roll. Hence the switch.
This particular workbench was inspired by Part 2 of the Series – Custom Shelving. I thought the shelves turned out really sturdy and fairly attractive for what they were. So I decided to scale down the project into a workbench format. That way my workbench would match the shelving and it would be just as reliable and sturdy.
I started by determining my dimensions. I decided to make the height 36 inches. This might be a little higher than some workbenches, but I knew I wanted enough room for a big shelf underneath it. My plan is to put a peg board right over the bench to hang the tools I use the most. Since the dimensions of my peg board are 48″ X 48″, I determined that the length of my workbench should be the same. I determined the depth by cutting that number in half. I wanted to be able to reach easily over the bench to retrieve my tools from the peg board. As for the shelf, I basically eyeballed a height that I thought was appropriate. The bottom of the bench ended up measuring 12 inches from the ground.
With these particular measurements in mind, I created my shopping list and my cut list.
(2) 2 x 4 x 8s
(2) 2 x 4 x 12s
(1) Sheet of Plywood
(52) #8 x 2 1/2 Wood Screws
(4) 2 x 4 @ 48″ – Cut from the 2 x 4 x 8s
(4) 2 x 4 @ 36″ – Cut from the 2 x 4 x 12s
(6) 2 x 4 @ 21″ – Cut from the 2 x 4 x 12s
(2) 24″ x 48″ Pieces of Plywood – Cut from Sheet
I already owned several of the items on my list so my shopping list consisted of 2x4s. Normally, I would just ask the guys at the hardware store to make the cuts for me, but there was some sort of kids club going on in the store when I was there. So the big saw was shut down and I had to bring my 2x4s home and cut them with my miter saw. Below is a shot of the cuts after I made them. It is a good photo for those who are visual learners like me.
As for the plywood, I recycled some pieces I already had in the garage. They actually came from my college beer pong table. I made the table for one of my birthday parties. It was made to look like the Virginia Tech Football field. I was really proud of it back in the day. But now that I have a baby on the way, I figured it was time to recycle the table into something a little more useful. So I used my circular saw to cut 2 pieces to 24 inches by 48 inches.
Once the plywood was cut, I was ready to start assembling all my pieces. I started the same way I did with the custom shelving. I constructed the base of the two shelves. Each shelf base consisted of 2 48″ cuts and 3 21″ cuts. I lined the 48″ cuts up parallel to each other and placed the 21″ cuts in between them as supports.
I used the power drill to pre-drill holes through the 48″ cuts where they met with the supports. Then I used the impact driver to secure them with the #8 x 2 1/2 inch wood screws.
Once the base for the shelves were built I added the plywood to the tops of them. I used the impact driver to secure the boards to the base with the wood screws. I put a screw in each of the 4 corners and two in the middle where the center support was.
When both shelves were finished I flipped them up onto their sides and prepared to attach the legs.
I started with the top of the bench. I pre-drilled holes on the legs with the power drill. I made sure the legs were lined up with the top and sides of the top shelf. Then I used the same screws to secure the legs to the top of the first shelf with the impact driver.
Once the legs were secure to the top shelf, I prepared to attach them to the bottom shelf. I used the same method as the top except that I had to measure where the second shelf would go. I measured from the bottom of each leg, 12 inches. When the screws were in and both legs were completely secure, I flipped the whole structure up on its side to avoid having the shelves collapse on the other side.
I placed the whole structure back on the ground facing the other way. Then I repeated the steps on the other side to attach the last two legs. Once they were all on, I flipped the table up onto it’s legs.
Ta-Da!!! A brand new workbench with a hefty structure, plenty of room to work and lots of storage space. Easy to make, cheap to buy, and quick to assemble. I did this whole project in just over an hour, by myself, and pregnant. If I can do it, so can you!
Stay tuned for more steps in the Garage Makeover Series. Coming soon!