How To Make A DIY Mobile Workbench Out of Wood

  • By: Monica Shulz

The workbench is arguably one of the important fixtures in the workshop. The quality of your workbench will determine how easy and how well your work turns.

However, with top-quality workbenches costing an arm and a leg, it can be hard to get one for your workshop. So, we’ve decided to show you how you can create a sturdy workbench from wood all by yourself.

In a few easy steps, you too can create a high-quality, mobile workbench for your workshop. So, let’s head to the workshop to start building it.

What You’ll Need

To build the workbench, you must get a few items from the hardware store. They include;

  • 15cm x 5cm Lumber
  • 5cm x 10cm Lumber
  • Long M9 Threaded Rod
  • M9 Nuts
  • 5cm x 5cm Angle Iron
  • 4 Caster Wheels
  • 20mm Thick Plywood Sheet

Cut Out The Blanks For The Tabletop

Place the 15cm x 5cm lumber on the floor and mark seven 220cm long sections. Cut out these sections using a miter saw.

Pass the blanks through a thickness planer to level their surfaces and remove the old wood.

Mark Out Holes for Drilling

Place the blanks you cut flat on their sides and arrange them, so they are side to side. Make sure their tops and bottom line up perfectly.

Measure 20cm from the bottom of one of the blanks and mark the spot. Do the same on another blank. Using a try square, join both marks with a horizontal line across all the blanks.

Repeat this same process at the top of the blanks and mark a point 20cm from the top. Finally, measure 110cm from the bottom of the blanks and mark it on two blanks.

Join these marks and extend them across all the blanks with a horizontal line.

Drill The Holes For The Threaded Rods

The blanks will be connected by a threaded rod passing through them to form the tabletop. So, you need to drill holes for the rod to pass through.

Place one of the blanks on the drill press with the marked side facing upwards. Drill the three lines on the side with a 10mm bit right in the middle.

Make sure you drill through to the other side at all three points. Repeat the same for all three blanks.

Assemble The Tabletop

Mark out three 130cm sections from the M9 rod. Cut them out using an angle grinder. Take one blank and place it flat on its face.

Insert the threaded rods in the holes at the blank’s top, bottom, and middle. Next, insert another blank onto the threaded rods until it is side to side with the first one.

You can tap the blank with a mallet to get it through the threaded rods. Add the rest of the blanks to the stack just like that.

Secure The Tabletop Together

Take a 5cm x 5cm angle iron and cut six 5cm sections from it. Drill a 10mm wide hole in the center of one side of the angle irons.

Make sure there is no space between the connected blanks. You can tap them together with a mallet to ensure a tight fit.

Next, place an angle iron over the ends of the threaded rods on both sides of the tabletop. Secure the angle iron to the table using an M9 nut.

Cut off any excess parts of the threaded rod with an angle grinder. After that, tighten the nuts properly with a spanner.

Add Braces to The Tabletop

Place the 5 x 10cm wooden beam on the floor and mark three 105cm long sections. Cut them out with the miter saw.

Place one just below the tabletop’s top edge, sitting just above the threaded screw’s angle iron. Place another one the same way at the bottom, sitting below the bottom threaded screw’s angle iron.

Finally, place the last one in the middle.

Drill pilot holes in the braces and secure them to the tabletop by drilling woodscrews into them.

Cut Out The Legs For The Table

Place the 5 x 10cm lumber on the floor and mark four 82cm long sections. You can reduce or increase this value depending on the height you want for the workbench.

Cut out the sections using the miter saw. Run all of them through the thickness planer to clean up their surfaces.

Cut Out The Framing For The Table’s Legs

Take out the 15cm x 5cm board, place it on its side and mark out a 95cm long section on one of its edges. Set your miter saw to an angle of 45 degrees.

Using that angle, cut out the section and create a piece with an angled edge by cutting OUTWARDS from the marks. Repeat this process to create another piece.

Next, measure the distance between the top and bottom braces on the tabletop. Use this dimension and repeat the process above to create the final two framing pieces.

Assemble The Framing for The Legs

Assemble the pieces you just cut out into a rectangle. Ensure their angled edges line up correctly and clamp the corners using a right-angle clamp.

Drill pilot holes in one of the corner joints and secure the joint with wood screws. Do the same for the rest of the corners in the framing.

Attach The Legs To The Framing

Place one leg at each corner of the table’s framing. Make sure the legs are snugly in the framing’s corners. Also, make sure the 5cm sides of the legs are on the shorter faces of the framing.

Drill pilot holes through the framing and the legs and join them using wood screws. Use about six screws per leg for a stable joint.

Add a Ledge To The Top of the Framing

Place the 2cm x 5cm blank on the floor and mark two 85cm sections and two 170 cm sections. Cut them out using the saw.

Turn the framing over so it’s standing on the legs. Take one of the 85cm blanks you just cut and place it on the inside edge of one of the 95cm sides of the framing.

Make sure the top of the blank is level with the top of the framing. Secure the blank to the framing with some wood screws.

Repeat the process for the remaining sides of the framing with the rest of the blanks.

Add Corner Caster Brackets To The Framing

The corner caster brackets will be the mounting points for the wheels on the table. First, cut out two 30cm x 30cm sections from the 2cm thick plywood board.

Next, join opposite corners on each blank with a line using a pencil. Divide each blank into two triangles with a table saw, using the diagonal line as a cutting guide.

Place each triangular blank on a corner of the framing. Make sure the bracket lines up perfectly with the edges of the framing, and drill pilot holes through both of them.

Secure them together using wood screws.

Attach The Caster Wheels To The Framing

Place the tabletop on your garage floor with the side with the braces facing up. Place the framing with the legs between the bottom and top braces and ensure it is right in the middle of the tabletop.

Now, mark a point 10cm from the side and 10cm from the bottom on each caster bracket. Drill holes all the way through at those points using a 10mm bit.

Insert the caster wheels in those holes and secure them with nuts and washers. Make sure the wheels are facing up when you install them.

Attach The Legs To The Tabletop

Cut out four 5cm wide sections from the 5cm angle iron. Drill two holes each for wood screws in the top and bottom of each angle iron section.

Next, ensure that the framing is squarely placed in the middle of the tabletop. Place one of the angle iron sections up against the 5cm side of one of the framing’s legs.

Ensure the angle iron is on the tabletop and resting against the legs. Secure the angle iron with woodscrews through its top section to the legs.

Next, secure it to the tabletop with wood screws through its bottom section. Tighten the screws properly.

Do the same thing for the remaining legs.

Prep The Tabletop For Its Framing

Turn the workbench over so the tabletop faces up and the wheels are at the bottom. Go over the top surface with an electric sander to level and smoothen it.

Next, take an angle grinder and cut off any threaded rod sticking out from the nuts on the side of the table. The top of the threaded rod should be flush with the nuts.

Check the top and bottom of the tabletop with a try square to see if the ends of the individual boards are level. If they aren’t, draw a horizontal, level line just beneath the edges with a try square.

Use the line as a cutting guide and cut off the uneven edges with a circular saw.

Cut Out The Framing For The Tabletop

Place the 5cm x 15cm wooden board on its side and mark a section 105cm wide on one edge. Set your miter saw to a 45-degree angle and cut outwards from those marks to create an angled edge.

Repeat this process to create another blank just like this. Next, measure the dimension of the longer side of the tabletop and use this dimension to repeat the process to make two more blanks.

Next, place these longer framing on the sides of the tabletop. Mark the points where the framing coincides with the angle irons.

Cut out 2cm deep recesses in these points. Do the same for the framing on the other side.

Attach The Framing to The Workbench

Take one of the longer framing blanks and place it right up against the side of the table. Ensure all the edges line up and drill pilot holes in the framing.

Attach the framing to the tabletop using wood screws. Do the same thing around the workbench with the rest of the framing pieces.

Ensure the angled edges of the framing line up properly with each other for the best look.

Cut Out The Floor For The Bottom Framing

Measure the length and breadth of the space between the bottom framing. Place the 2cm thick plywood and mark a section with the dimensions you just measured.

Cut it out using a table or jig saw. Next, mark out sections for the table’s legs at each corner of the floor.

These sections should be 5cm wide and 10cm long, just like the legs. Cut them out with a jig or table saw.

Add The Floor To The Bottom Framing

Place the floor you just cut out inside the bottom framing. Ensure the floor is resting properly on the ledges in the bottom framing.

Next, you can secure the floor to the ledges using wood screws.

Final Product

Congrats! Your new workbench is now complete. You can load it up with all the tools you love having close at hand and start working on it.

You can even take it a bit further and add some fixtures like a bench vise to improve the bench’s functionality.

You can find more awesome, cost-saving projects on the ST Workshop YouTube channel.

Photo by ST WORKSHOP / CC BY 3.0