If you engage in woodworking, you obviously need someplace to engage your craft. While any table or workbench can do, they are not truly ideal for the tasks you intend to accomplish and will ultimately add to your time and energy invested. That is why best woodworking benches can be a good investment.
Best Woodworking Bench of 2018
That is why we have put together a list of the 5 best woodworking workbenches, identifying what each one is best for. Then we provide a helpful buyer’s guide, so you can find the woodworking bench that best suits your needs and budget.
|Size of Top,|
Workbench T10157Editor’s Choice
|front and side||from 32 to 39||60 x 30||Bench dogs|
|Windsor Design |
|side||33 1/4||60 x 20 1/8||4 drawers|
|Sjobergs Duo Workbench 33445 ||front and side||33 7/8||21 x 58||Bench dogs|
Two double rows
|Sjobergs Elite 1500|
Workbench with Cabinet
|front and side||35 1/2||54 x 23 5/8||Bench dogs|
|front||33 6/7||49 3/5 x 24||Drawer, Storage shelf|
Bench dog holes
Grizzly Oak Workbench T10157 – Best All-Around Value Woodworking Bench
Thankfully, Grizzly stands and benches are still made at some of the highest standards available.
While a strict figure for the bench’s weight capacity is not available, a quick browse through their other stand and bench products shows a general weight capacity well above most other brands. As such, while we cannot say for certain that this bench provides the best weight capacity, it is more than likely that it the capacity is similar to the other products in the catalog.
- Largest bench we reviewed
- Made from the hardest wood on our list
- Provides adequate storage
- Height can be adjusted
- 1 ½” thick table top
- Provides 2 vices
- Offers a good weight capacity
- The metal stand clashes
- Storage shelf is a tight fit
- Smallest vice capacity at only 4”
- Not as easy to assemble
Windsor Design Workbench – Best Hobbyist Woodworking Bench
For one, the bench itself is a good size. While its width as a tad short at just over 1 ½’, the length is a great 5’ long. Even better, this bench is made out of birch wood. Birchwood is similar to beech in that it is strong but soft enough to prevent inadvertent dulling of your tools. However, birch has a bit of an advantage over beech in that it is not a porous which makes staining on the Windsor Design a more worry-free affair.
One nice feature of the Windsor Design is its storage capacity. This bench offers the second most storage we saw with four large drawers and a shelf underneath. Even better, the four drawers are all lined with felt to ensure that the tools stored within remain sharp and do not unintentionally dull from running against the wood.
Though, this is an area where the dog holes make another unwanted appearance. Essentially, the dog holes are drilled straight through the tabletop which normally would not be much of an issue. Unfortunately, this allows some of the holes to open up into the drawers which can lead to sawdust dropping into the drawers.
- A fairly large bench
- One of the less expensive benches
- Provides plenty of storage
- The largest vice capacity at 7”
- Includes a variety of pegs, dog holes, dowels
- Easy to assemble
- Made out of hard birch
- Only includes a single, stationary vice
- Dog holes over drawers go straight through
- 250 lb weight capacity limits projects
- Securing pegs are positional
- Drawers are not
Sjobergs Duo Workbench 33445 – Best Budget Professional Woodworking Bench
Unless you are already fairly familiar with woodworking, the name Sjobergs might not mean that much to you.
For seasoned woodworkers, on the other hand, Sjobergs is well-known as one of the best manufacturers of woodworking tables.
Aside from the fact that the company makes it a point to use high-end materials, Sjobergs stands above its competition in one other important area too: craftsmanship. It may seem odd, but producers of woodworking tables rarely put the same level of excellence into their products that their customers do in their projects.
This bench suffers from no such limitations as it provides an incredibly solid and stable workspace, albeit in a somewhat stripped down version. In terms of performance, Sjobergs 33445 tops our list at providing 500 lbs of weight capacity. This is one of the more quantifiable measurements to determine the quality of a work bench’s craftsmanship. This is achieved by using thick pieces of European beech wood and working it without using lower end joints – like butt joints.
Another aspect that might irk some buyers is the fact that the capacity of this bench is less than great outside of weight. The top’s surface area is a bit on the smaller end, though its length is more in line with larger models. The width though is less than two feet which can limit some projects. Similarly, the vice capacity is the second smallest on our list at 4 ½”, though this too can be modded with optional additions.
- Includes two vices
- Bench provides four vice positions
- Made from durable beech wood
- A 500 lb load capacity is great
- Can be bolted to the floor
- Provides numerous dog holes
- Easy to assemble
- Modular for further expansion
- Does not include any storage
- Is an extremely expensive bench
- One of the smaller benches
- Vice capacity is only 4 ½”
- Does not come with many pegs or dowels
Sjobergs Elite 1500 Workbench plus Cabinet – Best Professional Woodworking Bench
By doing so, the company places quality and craft above embellishment. That said, the flagship workbench from Sjobergs manages to do both exceptionally well.
Though still straightforward in design, this bench distinguishes itself from many of its competitors with the sheer wealth of storage options. It includes two drawers of equal size with an additional drawer of double size as well as a spacious cupboard. Altogether, this provides for more storage space and organization than any other workbench we reviewed. Of course, this bench also comes with many of the same advantages and disadvantages that you would expect to see on other models within this lineup.
In terms of size, this bench is another Sjobergs that is a bit on the small side, though it is actually far more squared than some others. While its length is a bit disappointing at 54″, the width is over 24″ wide which does provide for more diverse projects. Even better, this product still features the incredibly 500-pound weight capacity and continues the Sjobergs trend of avoiding joints that are not as durable as they otherwise could be.
To provide further stability, this bench can be bolted directly to the ground without having to modify it. The beech wood used in the construction will provide a sturdy build but is still soft enough to avoid accidentally dulling tools, though you may want to be careful when applying stains or other liquids as it could be absorbed by the wood.
- Offers the most storage we saw
- Provides two vices
- Durable enough for any job
- A 5 ¾” vice capacity is okay
- A weight capacity of 500 lbs is great
- Comes with many dog holes
- Made out of hard beech wood
- Can be bolted to the floor
- The most expensive bench reviewed
- Is not as large as preferred
- Does not include many dowels or pegs
- Longer assembly required
Olympia Tools Workbench 84-906 – Best Beginner Woodworking Bench
A couple nice qualities about this bench include the weight and vice capacities. The weight capacity of this bench is 330 pounds which is decent, though it will not wow you too much. The vice, on the other hand, provides a 7” capacity which is tied for the most on our list. That said, there is only a single vice, and it is not able to be repositioned. This can make things a bit frustrating for lefties as it is a right-handed configuration.
- The least expensive bench reviewed
- Fairly easy to assemble
- Made out of solid rubberwood
- The glue joints are strong
- Includes plugs and dowels
- Includes a work trough for pieces
- 330 lb weight capacity is okay
- The largest vice capacity at 7”
- Does not provide much storage
- Only a single, stationary vice
- Instructions are poorly written
- The smallest bench we saw
- Work trough reduces workspace further
There are a wide variety of woods used for woodworking benches. Generally, you will want some kind of hardwood since softwood cannot withstand the years and weight that harder woods can. That being said, too hard of wood will prematurely dull your tools, so it is a good idea to look for a medium hardwood over the hardest woods in this respect.
This is clearly one of the more important factors as it will have an impact on the size of projects the bench can assist you with. For length, you will generally want a table that is 5’ long but no less than 4’ long. For width, 1 ½’ feet is about as little as you can accept with anything over 2’ being the goal.
Much like the dimensions of a bench’s tabletop, the weight capacity will similarly affect what size of projects you can work on with your bench. A common weight capacity sits between 220 to 250 pounds. While this is okay, it will limit some heavier projects. Ideally, you should shoot for 300 pounds, though some benches can offer 500 pounds of weight capacity or more.
This is technically a vanity factor, though the ability to store tools and other supplies at quick reach can be a time and energy saver. At the least, you will want a bench that comes with a shelf underneath. This will allow the storage of larger items that can otherwise be difficult to find a place for. Drawers are the other popular storage for benches and can make retrieving tools much easier – just make sure the inside of the drawer is lined with felt or the wood may prematurely dull your tools.
In terms of professional use, the two Sjobergs are fairly easy choices. While they are significantly more expensive than the other benches, they offer multiple vices and are some of the most solidly constructed benches we saw – with a 500 pounds weight capacity to back that up.
If you are looking to save a little money and are not yet a professional level woodworker, both the Windsor Design and Olympia Tools are decent options. Both only provide a single vice and have a bit lower weight capacity, but the Windsor Design provides the second best amount of storage space.