One of the things I've been lacking in the shop is a big, sturdy assembly table. This will be increasingly necessary as I begin the casework for the instrument and it will be nice to have for everything else I work on from time to time. I've been working on a 2' x 5' workbench I purchased at Home Depot five years ago. While it's been nice to have, it's just too small for a lot of the work I now do.
When I initially considered building an assembly table, I thought I might put one together that breaks down easily, but then I would struggle with it not being as stable as I will need, especially for gluing large parts. In the end, I decided to build a 4' x 8' multi-function table that will act as the main fixture in the middle of the shop, as well as a place to store the exotic, specialty and smaller woods that line the shop walls.
The assembly table will act as the base of a go board set up for gluing soundboards and other large pieces. This means I will build a structure mounted to the ceiling that is also multi-functional; it will be the top of the go board clamping system and store some of the larger, longer pieces of wood that line the walls of the shop, as well.
Finally, the assembly table will also act as an outfeed table for the new table saw. I will route a couple of channels into the top and install aluminum (aluminium for those of you in the UK) channels for the miter (mitre for those of you in the UK) gauge and the crosscut sled I will be building soon.
The logical consequence of all this is that my wall space will be increased, minimizing the effects of plopping a HUGE table in the middle of the shop. Once I can store the wood that currently lines the walls in the table/go board setup, I will rearrange the tools and machines to more closely hug the walls. This way, I can make the assembly table the rallying point around which all of my work will be done.
The table is basically a large box with open space in the middle for wood storage. My intent is to not overbuild the structure and I am not gluing the edges because we are renting and I want to be able to break it down and move it without the assistance of four large people. Because we will one day move. I promise.
On an unrelated matter, you are aware I enjoy naming my tools and machines. After several days of intense deliberation I've decided to name the new table saw...Grizz. Yes, it was a stretch, but I'm comfortable with it and the saw doesn't seem to mind, either.
Until next time...