The Joy of Sawbenches
Christopher Schwarz Sawbench

I enjoy building sawbenches. Simple construction and few design constraints make a fast, creative project. Here are some of my iterations.

I started with Christopher Schwarz’s design.

I moved his cross braces up so the bench can straddle uncut boards on the floor.

The long braces irritate me. My rip saw insists on poking the braces. To alleviate the jabs, I moved the braces inside the legs. That made it worse.

simple sawbench I thought this bench was going to be the answer.

Construction is fast and simple. The straight sides make ripping easier.

However, the thin wood vibrates, wasting saw energy. Also, the 1x12 top is too wide.

I should try making one from a 2x10.

I still recommend this as a first sawbench.

small sawbench Many sawbenches in old books do not have cross bracing. I tried that.

As weight is applied, the legs on this bench give, automatically adjusting to an uneven floor.

Angling the legs in two dimensions is harder to build, but not more stable. I tried it.

A sawing error made this bench top short. It is useful as the “other” sawbench. However, standing on this top is unsafe.

I am 6”1’. All of these sawbenches are 20” tall. The 24” sawbench at the Hand Tool Olympics fit me better. Also, my 28” rip saw hits the floor with a 20” bench.

My next two benches will be 24” tall.

Daddy,  Can We Play in the Workshop?

If hand tool woodworking is your passion, you may enjoy my children's book, Daddy, Can We Play in the Workshop?