It's been a few months since I made my
first project out of wood, and as the time went by, I realized that woodworking
became part of my life. So, I dedicated almost a month in designing and building
this multi-purpose workbench that will ease my future projects. Today I'm going to
show you how I turned my router into a router table, my circular saw into a
table saw, and my jig saw into a bandsaw.
Also, I'm going to show you how I collect
the dust from these tools. And at last I'll show you how I connected and wired
everything along with a complete explanation. In this video I'll give you
free plans with all the dimensions and details that will help you build your
own multi-purpose workbench. There you can also find some accessories that I
plan to make in some of my next videos, like table saw fence, crosscut sled, miter
gauge, feather board and push stick.These accessories are a must-have for a
workbench like this, especially for safety and precision. You can find the
free plans in the video description below. So, let's get started. For this
project I used two sheets of plywood 122 by 244 centimeters,
21 millimeters thick. First, I marked all the dimensions and prepared the sheets
I used a wooden strip as a fence, and clamped it down, and it did a
really good job. Also I placed the sheets onto 2
tables to prevent the wood from splintering. Then, I started cutting. I've
made all the cuts with a circular saw. It was a bit difficult to make the first
cuts due to the size of the sheets, but with a little effort and patience I
finished this step successfully. I cut all the pieces that I need for this project:
the top, the bottom, the sides, the inner panels, the doors, and the frame which
will go below the top. Now that I have all the pieces cut to size, it is time to
start assembling the workbench. I'll start with the bottom and I'll attach
the sides to it. To make the sides perpendicular with the bottom I'm using
corner clamps, which are very useful for this kind of
On the bottom of the table I'm marking the points where I will drive
the screws in, and then I'm drilling some pilot holes in there. After I made the
pilot holes, I decided that it is much better to strengthen the joints with a
wood glue and then to drive the screws in. I'm using 5centimeters long
screws with 4 millimeters diameter. I repeated this process with the other two
panels which are parallel with the first one. Before I continue with the rest 2
vertical sides of the workbench, I'll attach the shelves. To do this, I'll make
pocket holes with a pocket hole jig on each shelf.
This is the most appropriate way to give the table a cleaner look.
When it comes
to the shelves I need to make sure that they're lined up and to check the
squaring. I spent some time measuring and clamping them down with corner clamps
and then I drove the screws in. I couldn't use the special driver bit
which is used for pocket hole screws because the inner space was tight, so I
used shorter bit to drive the screws into the pocket holes. For these joints
I'm using 4 centimeters long screws. I repeated this process with the second
shelf, but this time I used the longer driver bit, because there was enough
space for it.
As you can see, the shelves are lined up well, so I can move on to
attaching the other 2 panels which are perpendicular with the other panels that
are already attached to the bottom of the workbench. I secured them in place
with wood glue and corner clamps and then I drove some screws into both
sides that touch this panel. I placed the other panel in parallel with the
previous one. One more thing I need to do is to attach the last shelf with pocket
hole screws as well. Now, it is time to pay attention to the top of the table.
This is the most important part of the entire workbench, because here I'll
attach all the tools that I'll use in my next projects.
All the measurements need to be accurate, and everything needs to be square with
the front of the table. You can see that I'm going to make all the cuts and
inserts before attaching the top to the sides of the table.
The reason why I'm
doing this is because it will be much easier to make holes for the caster
wheels on the bottom without the top. The first tool that I'm going to attach is
the router. I measured the size of the opening, found the center, and drew a
square on the panel that I need to cut with the jigsaw. Then I drilled out 4
holes, 1 in each corner to pass the jigsaw blade through. These holes will be
starting points for the jigsaw. While cutting you should try to stay as close
to the line as possible, but if you get out of control don't worry, because anyway you make new inserts from another plywood board, and you'll need to adjust
that to the front.
I've cut the opening and used a rasp to remove all the extra
wood that I couldn't cut with the jigsaw. Next, I need to make a rabbet for the
insert that will hold the router from below. I'm drawing the perimeter of the
square that I need to cut. It is actually the same size as the insert. I decided to
try my new route,r and remove 1 centimeter of the surface of the plywood.
To follow the line of the perimeter, I clamped down a few pieces of scrap wood
I'm using a straight 12 millimeters bit to route this section out, but I set the
depth of the cut on 5millimeters, so I need to pass twice on the same surface
to get the 10 millimeters depth.
Anyway, I'm very satisfied with how it turned
out. Now, I need to make the inserts for the tools. The rabbet that I previously
made can fit 10 millimeters thick insert. The problem is that I don't have 10
millimeters thick plywood, so I need to find away to solve this issue. The
only reasonable solution was to turn the 21 millimeters plywood board into 10
millimetres board with a router. So, I took a plywood board with a size that
will match the size of all the 3 inserts for the tools that I plan to
attach to the workbench, and I started removing 11 millimeters off of the
plywood. The surface was pretty large and it took me some time until I finished.
the end, I was all covered in dust, but I finally got 10 millimeters board, which
was one of the most important parts of the project. Before cutting the inserts
I sanded the board down to make it nice and smooth. Then, I cut the insert for the
router, and used a sandpaper to make round edges. It is a perfect fit for the
opening. Next, I removed the base of the router and I used it as a template to
mark the mounting holes. In fact, I marked all the points where I needed to drill
holes, because I needed to secure the router to the insert, and then to secure
the insert to the top of the table.
Then I drilled the holes out. First, I used the
countersink bit to drill out the holes just enough to get the screw heads to
sink below the surface of the wood. That's because I need the insert to be flush
with the surface of the table. For the router I made holes with a 4
millimeters bit and for the insert I made 6 millimeters holes.
Also, I used a
35 millimeter Forstner bit to drill out the center, so that I can easily move the
router bit up and down. The last 4 holes I drilled with an 8 millimeter
bit into the corners of the rabbet. Now, I'm going to install the T-nuts
below the surface, so that I can secure the insert in place. I'm going to use a
clamp which will pull the t-nut inside the wood. And that's it!
I will attach the router onto the insert, and then I will attach the insert onto
So, the router is pretty much done at this moment. Now I can move on to the second tool, and that's the circular saw. The process is similar to the
previous one. The difference here is in the opening, which is so much larger. Here,
I need to pay much more attention to the squaring. The saw has to be squared up
with the front edge of the workbench, so I need to measure twice before cutting. Then again, I drilled 4 holes for the jigsaw blade to pass through, and make an
opening as big as the circular saw. The rasp corrected all the imperfections.
Then I made a rabbet with the router, and this time I set the depth of the cut
on 10 millimeters, so that I can remove the extra wood all at once. Fortunately,
now I have 10 millimeters thick plywood for this insert. So, I cut the insert to
size and rounded the edges with a sandpaper. To attach the circular saw to
the insert, I'm going to utilize the existing holes, two in the front and two
in the back of the saw, I'm just going to use new longer bolts.
I removed the
original bolts, found the exact location of the saw, and marked the places where I
will need to drill holes in the insert. After that, I drilled all the holes I
needed. I'm going to use bolts with 4 and 5 millimeters diameter, two of
each, and also I'm going to use 4 bolts with 6 millimeters diameter to
attach the insert to the table. I installed the T-nuts
with an F- clamp, one in each corner of the opening. You may have to drill new
holes in your so base, if you can't use the existing ones.
Now I'll place the
circular saw below the top, and at this point I need to make two cuts, one at a
90 degree angle and another at a 45 degree angle. In this position I can turn
the circular saw on, and make the two cuts through the insert. So, I've turned
the circular saw into a table saw, which means I'm done with this part of the
workbench. Next, I can focus on the third tool, and that's the jigsaw. I've made all
the measurements for the opening, so I can start cutting. In each corner I
drilled 4 holes, and slowly passed the jigsaw through, following the lines. The
process is pretty much the same here. Again, all the imperfections are
corrected with a rasp. Then, I clamped down four pieces of scrap wood, and they
will act as a guide for the router. I routed the section out with a 12
millimeter bit. This is the insert that I previously made. It is a perfect fit for
the opening. After that, I need to attach the jigsaw to the insert, and to do that I need to drill new holes in my saw base.
I placed the jigsaw onto
a bunch of scrap wood pieces, and secured it with some clamps.Then, I marked the
points where I'll drill the holes with a screw and the mallet. I drilled 2 holes
in the front and 2 holes in the back of the jigsaw. To do this I'm using 5
millimeter metal drill bit. Now that I have 4 holes on the jigsaw I can make
the appropriate holes on the insert, and on the opening, and to install the T-nuts.
Also, I made a 15 millimeters hole with a Forstner bit for the jigsaw blade. I used
this bit size because most of the blades I have are small enough to fit inside a
15 millimeters hole. I can now attach the jigsaw onto the insert, secure the insert
onto the workbench, and put the blade in place to check the squaring. You may have
a different jigsaw, so you may need to use a different method to attach it to
the workbench. Okay, now that I'm done with all 3
tools, I can move on to the caster wheels that I need to attach to the bottom.
First, I'll remove the inserts and the top and I'll lay the table down on the
back side, so that I have an access to work on the bottom.
After I drew some
lines, I can mark the points for the screws, and drill 4 holes on each
corner. At this point I'm not going to attach the wheels, instead I'm just going
to make the holes so that I can attach them later after I'm done painting. I'm
using caster wheels with breaks, because this way I can easily move the workbench,
and I can secure it in place while I'm working. To attach the top to the table
I'm making pocket holes on each side for which I'm going to use 32 millimeter
screws. Then I am applying a decent amount of wood glue, because I need the
top to be firmly attached. Here, I need to pay attention of the squaring of the top
with the sides, especially with the front of the table. I'm driving pocket hole
screws in each hole. The next step is to mount the frame below the top. I apply
wood glue on the first stripe, clamp it down, and drive screws from the inside.
For the rest 3 stripes I drive screws from below,
and it worked just fine. Now, it is time to work on the doors. I'll make all the
holes I need before painting, because I want to get clean and sharp look of the
workbench, and to avoid imperfections as much as I can. I'm marking the points
where I'll place the hinges, and I'm making holes using 35 millimeter
Forstner bit. The depth of the holes depends on the depth of the hinges, so I
need to check how much of the plywood I need to remove. Here I'm marking the
points of the screws, and then I drill the holes. I'll mount the doors later in
the video, but here I'm showing you how opening the door will look like.
painting, I'm sanding the entire workbench, the doors, and the inserts, first with 120 and then with 220 grit sandpaper. Then I
wipe the dust off of the plywood, and this means that the bench is ready for
the next step. I decided to finish it with a combination of stain and paint, so
I stained the top, the inserts, and the doors with walnut stain, and I painted
everything else with white paint. I chose to do the top first. I applied one nice
coat of walnut stain, and wiped it off, and I think one coat is enough, because
the main purpose of the stain is to protect the wood and to give it a nice
What I most like about the stain is that it emphasizes the edges of
the plywood wonderfully. Then, I stain the doors and the inserts. When it comes to
the paint, first I applied one coat of oil-based primer, left it to dry out, and
then sanded it with 120 grit sandpaper. After that, I applied one coat of white
oil-based paint and left it to dry for at least 24 hours before doing anything
else. After it's completely dry, I mount the caster wheels on the bottom with 8
millimeter bolts, and secure them well. Here you can see that the bottom isn't
painted, instead I applied transparent finish because it dries so fast, so I
didn't have to wait another 24 hours for more paint to dry out. Now I can move on
to the fun part of this project: the electrical work.
I'll put three switches in front of the workbench, which will control the 3
power outlets for each tool according to this circuit schematic. I'm using 3
core 1.5 millimeter cable, and I start by cutting it to size, and stripping off the
wires inside. I connected the hot and the neutral lines, in my case the brown
and the blue wires, to the switch in a way that they are connected to each
other when the switch is pressed, and disconnected when the switch is not
I attach the switch boxes to the workbench using screws, inserted the
other end of the cables through the holes where my junction box will be
located, and assemble the switches. On the other side, in the router compartment, I mark the position where the junction box will be placed, and attached it to the
side panel using two screws. In similar way, I connected the 3 power outlets
with the cables appropriately, attached them in each compartment, and assembled them. What's left is to connect the main power to the junction box. I did that by
using three meters long cable, on which I attached the power plug, and then brought
the cable to the junction box. At the end, I connected all the wires together in
the junction box, according to the circuit schematic. You can find more
details in the video description below. As I already said, there is a free plan
for this workbench, including the entire process of building
Once I'm done wiring, I can pay attention to the dust collection.
I've previously made these squares with holes in the middle that will fit all the
hoses needed for this workbench. They're all a tight fit, so that all the dust
will be collected without making a mess inside the bench. I screwed one square
above and one below the shelf, and this way I'll connect the hoses from the
tools and the hose from the vacuum cleaner. This was the best solution for
dust collection, but in your case doesn't have to be that way. The next step is
mounting the doors. The holes are already made, so I just need to screw the hinges
in place. I'm using full overlay hinges. Also I made door knobs out of plywood,
which I mounted with screws. I kind of like the exposed look of the screws. Mounting the doors on the workbench is easy, you just have to follow one simple
rule, which I also put in the video description.
I like the mechanism of the hinges, they're easy to install and adjustable,
which is pretty good for people who are using them for the first time.
emphasize the beauty of this workbench additionally. Finally, I can put the tools
in place, and test them. I'll start with the router. I place it inside the table,
connect the hose plug it in, and turn it on. As you can see it is easily
adjustable, you can take the router out in a second, change the bit depending on
the work that you need to do, and then return it in place. I put the hose from
the vacuum cleaner below the shelf and finally try the router. I clamp down a
scrap of wood as a guide, turn the switch on, and started working with the router.
It is so much easier than before. I do the same things with the circular saw. You
can notice that instead 4 I put 6 screws to attach the insert to the top.
this is because the surface of the insert warped for some reason, which I
couldn't fix, and I thought 2more screws in the middle will solve this
problem And I was right. Here I clamp the blade guard handle out of the way,
push the trigger switch in and lock it with a plastic zip-lock strip.
Now I can
test my new table saw. I can now move on to the last tool, and it's the bandsaw
the process here is pretty much the same. I put the blade in and try to make
curved cut on a piece of plywood. It turned out perfect. So, at this point I'm
done with my workbench. I'm very satisfied with how it turned
out. I really like its appearance and functionality, so I think it was worth
every second I've spent on its design and building. Don't forget to check and
download the free plan I'm giving to you. It includes all the details you need to
build your own multi-purpose workbench. Thank
you so much for watching. I hope you found this video useful, and you enjoyed
watching it. If you have any questions, suggestions, and ideas leave them in the
comment section below. Also, if you liked this video give me a thumbs up and
subscribe to my channel!.