cheapo bench using scrap chipboard


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Old 03-17-16, 08:05 AM
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cheapo bench using scrap chipboard

Hi people, this is my first post on the forum, so here goes:
I had to rip apart some old cupboards in my garage last year in order to put up my own shelves. I kept the chipboard in case it would come in handy, but it's starting to crowd my space now and I'd like to use it for something other than firewood.

So I had this idea...
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From underneath:
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Length: 1800mm (71")
Width : 450mm (just under 18")
Height: 450mm (just under 18")
The board is 15mm thick so I thought I'd use doubled-up pieces where I needed strength in the structure.
My question is:
I'm a complete DIY novice ... would this even work as a bench? Would it fall apart or does it look like it would be worth the time/effort to make it?

I appreciate any input. Trolling even (at least it means someone is reading my post! )
 
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Old 03-17-16, 08:14 AM
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Can it be done? yes
Would it fall apart? Not if you do it properly.
Would it be worth the time and effort? Only you can say. For me "no" for you "maybe".

Where you are doubling up the material I would glue and screw the two pieces together to get as much strength as possible. One of the weakest points will be where the vertical legs join your top and stiffeners. It will easily carry a straight down load but will be weak against side to side movement so anything you can do to beef up those joints would help.
 
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Old 03-17-16, 08:47 AM
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Thanks for the input! Never even thought about side-to-side movement!
 
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Old 03-17-16, 11:39 AM
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Ok, so instead of building it wrong and regretting later, I was wondering : how would I give it side-to-side strength?
Would adding a single stiffener along the bottom (similar to the top middle stiffener) help? Should I maybe make 3 stiffeners at the bottom? (It will certainly use up more of the chipboard!)

I thought about angling the vertical pieces, but then how would I attach them to the horizontal piece? And the angled cuts for slotting the stiffeners through would become a challenge for a complete novice like myself.

Any ideas?
 
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Old 03-17-16, 11:44 AM
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I'd add a back to the bench, like the privacy panel on a desk.
 
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Old 03-17-16, 12:29 PM
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I'd build a strong framework out of structural lumber and use the "chip board" for non-structural parts.
 
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Old 03-17-16, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Furd
I'd build a strong framework out of structural lumber and use the "chip board" for non-structural parts.
I like the idea, but my intention is only to get rid of the chipboard by putting it to use... I honestly don't wanna have to spend anything at all on this.

Originally Posted by stickshift
I'd add a back to the bench, like the privacy panel on a desk.
Thanks for the idea!
 
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Old 03-17-16, 01:35 PM
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Do as you like, I personally would never waste my time on a project just to say I was able to use material on it that would otherwise be firewood or material for the landfill. If I build a workbench I want it first and foremost to be sturdy. Using scrap materials just because I have them would not even be my third choice.

To each their own.
 
  #9  
Old 03-17-16, 02:58 PM
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Sitting bench, not workbench
Always useful to have one around the garage so that the family doesn't have to sit on stools watching me fail at woodworking!
So it's multi-purpose...
- Clears out the garage
- Makes a useful piece of furniture
- Helps develop woodworking skill by means of practice
- Helps me learn about things like side-to-side structural integrity by posting my idea on a forum and have people across the world critique my design.

...what a world we live in, eh?
Hello from South Africa, by the way!

And thanks again to everyone who's taken the time to read and post on this thread.
 
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Old 03-17-16, 03:14 PM
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When I built my office deck money was tight so I made the top out of OSB [chipboard] and then laminated it with 1/4" luan and banded the edge with oak. It still looks nice and has worked well for the last 10-12 yrs. You could do the same for your bench seat, I don't think much of OSB for a sitting surface but if you covered it with better wood or upholstery it should be fine.
 
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Old 03-17-16, 06:19 PM
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Yeah, I would sand and seal at a minimum if the OSB is going to be a sitting surface. Not a good place for splinters.
 

Last edited by stickshift; 03-18-16 at 09:33 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 03-18-16, 12:01 AM
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Thanks for those finishing tips ... the chipboard (OSB as you guys call it) was already factory-painted white. It's a bit old now but just needs cleaning up. So if I am careful in how I cut it, I'll only really need to edge-band the raw cut edges. If i does end up being nice, then naybe I'd consider a laminate and then maybe I could put on the porch rather than leave it in the garage ... that's a case where I might spend some money in it.
Great ideas, guys.
 
 

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