French Workbench (Roubo)

The workbench is the center of a hand tool shop.  It has to have a high degree of mass, stiffness, and hardness, as well as have the ability to hold work in in multiple ways quickly.   This white ash bench has a 4” thick top and weighs in at just under 300 lbs.   Machined vices are integrated in the top and in one leg.  Other work holding devices included a bench stop, a sliding deadman, and holes for holdfasts (it’s okay to ask what these are).

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bench shown in  Andre-Jaco Roubo's L'Art du Menuisier, 1769  (plate 11)

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