How to Pick Materials for a Workbench – This Old House

This Old House general contractor Tom Silva shows Kevin how to shop for lumber to build a workbench. (See below for a shopping list and tools.)

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Full episode:

How to Build a Cedar Bench:

How to Build a Tool Storage Cabinet:

How to Add Kitchen Cabinet Storage:

Shopping List for How to Pick Materials for a Workbench:
– Eight kiln-dried 2x4s, used for the legs and frame of workbench
– One sheet 3/4-inch-thick B-C fir plywood, used for workbench top

Tools for How to Pick Materials for a Workbench:
– Panel saw at home center, used by employee to rip plywood down to size

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20 Comments

  1. Heh. Obviously pre-sorted 2×4. I have to go through 90% of the stack at
    Home Depot to find anything even remotely flat.

  2. I never go to Home Depot after seeing the damaged goods they sell. Support
    your local lumber and hardware store.

  3. So we can all feel better about shopping there now that we know that the
    damaged goods they sell were damaged before they arrived at the Home Depot.
    Maybe they can make that part of an advertisement campaign.

  4. I would if they did not charge me $5 doller’s for a single pole switch or
    2.50 for a wall plate they kill you on small stuff here in the city thats
    why i go to the home depo.

  5. This looks quite familiar; is this a repost?

  6. +ThisIsTurok1 I usually end up hitting every hardware store, major and
    mom/pop to complete a home project. Each store seems to be missing
    something I need.

  7. +Slap Stick this.

  8. +Paul Montero The local lumber yard here requires that you take all lumber
    from the top of the stack. You’re not allowed to pick and choose. Given the
    humidity here in Maryland, the exposed wood (especially plywood) in their
    lumber sheds is always crap. Never again.

  9. +Paul Montero But for hardwood, I travel up to PA to Hearne’s.

  10. +Pete Brown I guess I am the lucky one. The local lumber yard not only
    lets me pick they will also help me do it. If you are ever in North Central
    Massachusetts or Southern New Hampshire visit Belletete’s.

    When I needed pre-hung doors I got them from their mill. While they were
    about ten dollars more than Home Depot the quality was much better. The
    jamb stock on the Home Depot door was finger jointed wood while the door
    jambs I got from Belletete’s was a solid piece of wood.

    To be fair the video did not mention Home Depot by name calling it the home
    center.

  11. RONA in canada has a better cutshop..

  12. Most of these are edited-down segments from ATOH, others are originals
    produced by the TOH Magazine staff. I don’t think I’ve seen any taken from
    TOH.

    Correction: there are a few segments from TOH.

  13. Hmmm, isn’t there usually more to a workbench than 2x4s and plywood?

  14. depends on the type of workbench

  15. +This Old House Is there a video for building the workbench you bought that
    lumber for?

  16. +Slap Stick Honestly- around here, it’s mix and match. I have one great
    Depot for large stock of most common stuff- they have some great building
    stock, but terrible service and blind cutting service. I have another one a
    little further with VERY limited stock, but they do stock stuff the bigger
    branch doesn’t have. Then I have a third one for excellent service and
    generally decent stock and supply. When that fails, their’s Lowe’s. But for
    the best plywood, I have to go to a fourth Lowe’s farthest away from me,
    distance wise. It’s kind of like the farther from home I get, the better
    the stuff gets. Go figure -.-

  17. +Zzyzx Been there! I had to drive an hour to some random Lowe’s in the
    middle of nowhere because I wanted a specific wine barrel planter. Just
    depends. Would you happen to know if any Home Depots have wood planing
    service??

  18. You know I am 31 years old and this show has been on longer than I am
    alive. I have to say growing up watching this show and continuing to watch
    this show with my dad over the years is one of those things that I know I
    will always remember. I love this show.

  19. I WISH I could see prices like those on plywood in Australia.. It’s
    ridiculous down here

  20. +Slap Stick Don’t know which home depot you go to, but the 3 closest ones
    to me all have good service. I also reply to another commenter, personally
    I think that HD is better for building materials and Lowes is better for
    the finishing touches such as lighting, window treatments, and the like.

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