When I built the Roubo-style workbench for the Fall 2005 issue, the idea was to make it as accessible and affordable as possible. I think we succeeded. The bench cost about $225 to build and took about a week of labor. And in the nine years I’ve been a woodworking magazine editor (and the 15 years I’ve been a professional journalist), I’ve never received such an outpouring of response to an article I’ve written (except perhaps that article about a dog that fell in love with a duck…¦.). The whole experience has been gratifying and humbling. But at the back of my mind, the purist in me has been whispering lately.
This morning I decided to build as pure a form of that Roubo bench as possible. So I called a nearby sawyer and placed an unusual order: A soft maple slab: 6″ x 24″ x 9′. And four legs: 5″ x 5″ x 36″. The wood is going to be wet when I bring it home, so I’m going to stash it underneath our deck for the next five years or so as it dries out. Give it another year in my shop to come to equilibrium and then I’ll get to work.
So look for the next version of this bench to appear in our magazine in 2011.