Category Archives: Milkman’s Bench

Taking orders for the “Milkman’s Workbench”

After making several portable workbenches for our plane making classes for use by students, we have received numerous requests for the complete bench by customers. In response to these requests, we are planning to build a production run this spring.  Dubbed the “milkman’s workbench” by Chris Schwarz in his Popular Woodworking article in June 2013, this tabletop bench is designed to clamp to any solid surface and is equipped with a full range of clamping options in a compact footprint. Here are the details:

  • Overall dimensions of the bench less the screws are 30″ long, 7 3/8″ wide, and 1 5/8″ thick.
  • The bench will be built of European beech, including the screws.
  • Clamping capacity:  Wagon vice between dogs is 23 1/2″, Moxon style front vice 19 1/2″ wide x 1 7/8″ deep.
  • Jaw liner applied to wagon vice jaws.
  • Screws are 1 1/2″ octagonal grips and are threaded at 1 1/4″ diameter with 5 threads per inch.  The wagon vice has a wood garter underneath so the vice jaw travels with the screw.
  • Two front screws can be positioned in any of the four tapped holes in the front apron.
  • Steel angle iron brackets are mounted to the end and back for mounting to the work surface with “C” clamps.
  • Bench dogs will be 3/4″ diameter and made of wood.  Two will be included.  More details below.
  • The front corners are pegged bridle joints, and there is a lag screw through the front rail into the bench for strength to resist clamping forces of the front vice.
  • Two coats of oil-varnish finish will be applied.

One change being made is the replacement of the 1/2″ square dogs with 3/4″ round dogs. The square dogs are somewhat delicate and subject to compression failure on the front faces.  The larger dogs will be more robust and the round holes will add the versatility of various woodworking accessories in the market.  These dogs will be made of a tough wood such as ash, and have flat clamping faces.  They will feature a ball detent to hold them in place at any setting desired.

Price for the complete bench is $495, plus shipping costs.  Expected delivery is early June 2018.  To order, contact us by email.  An invoice of $100 will be sent via PayPal when your order is placed, and can be paid by credit card or, if preferred, by check through the mail.   The remaining balance will be billed upon completion of the benches.

We also offer the screws, made by Acer-Ferrous Toolworks, for those who wish to build their own bench.  They are available here.

“Milkman’s Workbench” with square dogs. Production model will have round dogs, also wood.

Wagon Vice.  Note pegged corner joint and jaw liner.

Angle iron bracket for mounting bench.

Rear bracket.

 

 

New product: “Milkman’s Bench” screws

In the June 2013 issue of Popular Woodworking, Chris Schwarz wrote an article about a portable workbench dubbed the “Milkman’s bench.”  It is designed to clamp to any solid surface and provides a full range of clamping options for most tasks in a compact package.  I built several following the plans with no changes other than adding jaw liner to the tail vice for plane making and found them to be perfectly suited for holding the plane billets in any position needed.  Its compact size makes it easy to store and transport to demonstrations too. Chris wrote about his experience using this bench here.

It is a relatively easy project to make except for the wooden screws.  However, that just got a lot easier with the introduction of our new Acer-Ferrous wood screw set designed specifically for use on the Milkman’s bench.  The set includes two screws used in the twin screw area along the side of the bench and a single screw with a garter slot for use in the wagon vice.  These screws are made of hard maple and the threaded portion is 1 1/4″ diameter with 5 threads per inch.  The handles are octagonal in shape and provide plenty of grip for tightening. Width across the flats on the handles is 1 1/2″

The set of three screws is available for $85.  They can be purchased here.

Builders will still need to thread the holes for the screws but that is easily accomplished  using a 1 1/4″-5 tap available from the Beall Tool Company.

 

 

 

Screws shown with completed bench.

 

 

Complete bench with Acer-Ferrous screws installed.