Using some really basic tools, you can make yourself a nice table saw workstation. We woodworkers cannot imagine without having a nice workbench. This stuff is a must-have in the workshop. Most experts would prefer buying a professional version. But it’s also right to start with a minimal version if you are merely a beginner.
You can try some simple designs and combine them with a solid welded frame to make a beautiful and last-long kind of workbench, easily!
Making A DIY Workstation for Table Saw
I will use all wood components to make this elegant looking workstation. It’s simple and cost-effective, I promise! It hardly would cost you a couple of hundred dollars. So, what are we waiting for? Sink right into it.
What Did I Use?
I have used only four sheets of plywood for this particular workstation project. These are all three-by-four inches pieces. For the side and end panels, you need to use different sheets to cut them out.
Also, make sure you have the cutout for outfeed top and end from a similar sheet. There should be a lot of material left after cutting these. You can easily use those scraps to make any additional trays, feet, support or struts.
It’s also important to use the right type of material. You may want to go with commercial-grade plywood but that’s a big no. These are more prone to warp and come with cheap built quality. You’re also going to find these difficult to clean.
Always try to use hardwood plywood such as oak. These are pretty strong to give you a durable construction quality. Also, they tend to survive your regular hardcore chores better than commercial grade ones.
Get the Measurements Right!
Are you making this workstation for a saw that has its own cart? In that case, you need to do some measurements setting the saw. You would require the height of saw from top to bottom. Now simple minus three-by-sixteen inches from it. This is the measurement for side panels.
Now the front panels measurement should be three and a quarter inches less than side ones. For back part, it shall remain the same. You should make sure to have the surround of tabletop slightly lower than saw’s cart.
If the setup seems fussy to you, try shimming. You can shim below each foot to get a similar height.
Cut Accurate Slots!
For the interlocking notches, you need accurate slots. Keep the notch 1/32 inch wider than plywood.
This way you can ensure better sturdiness as well as easy setup. All notch depth should be the same. This is important for lining up all tops of every part. Your surface won’t be even to work otherwise.
Check the depth of your saw after setting it up. Now hold the side panels parts correctly and make sure they are upright. You need to fix a block to the sawhorse. Simply make cuts for each notch. Keep at least one-by-eight inches of gap between these notches.
Now focus on cutting thin plywood strips. You can use a good chisel for this task. Smooth down any unevenness in the notch using a file.
Focus on Side Cutting!
For this step, you need to nail a wood strip into a plywood scrap. Now at the bottom of side and end panels, trace and cut arches. Keep the ratio of cutting right. Use a jigsaw for this step.
Adding such a curve will make the workstation lighter. Also, it will give a better appearance along with easy handling.
Finish the sides with adding cleats over back notches. For the outfeed table, simply cut and notch struts. Inside the struts, glue, and nail any supportable part.
Time for Feet Assembly
You need to cut tiny plywood parts for feet. Use glue and screws to attach them. Don’t forget to check the edge alignments and if table is sitting flat. Using a belt sander or jigsaw, simply round the pure corners gradually. There should be no oozing glue remaining.
Outfeed of The Workstation
Keep the feet supporting sides, front and rear panels while you lay struts for outfeed part. You need to make sure the struts are in right place. They should not bind during the setup process or make any knockdown incident. It’s time to glue supports with the top.
Have a look at the interlocking joints. Are they all at the right height? The sides and front panels should be flushing. Use a file to lose any tight notch. Using a thin shim, you can also get rid of any extra depth.
Drill It Out!
Now it’s time to make some holes using a drill. These will be used for hanging parts. You can go with 2.5 inches of holes and a 16 inch one in the center. These are for wall stud alignments. Also, drill a half-inch lag screw into studs.
Use a hole saw to drill. Starting from a side go for a clean result. You should stop once the pilot emerges through opposite side. Go to opposite side and drill again for finishing the hole.
You can use a round-over router bit for this step. It’s almost done and you just need to round the edges. There should be no splintering in edges. This way the whole workstation would look better, but it’s not a mandatory step.
After that, you can sand the plywood using any sandpaper of your choice. Finish the project with vacuuming and applying two layers of Minwax. This will make it resistant to humidity changes.
You have a beautiful and convenient workstation for your precious table saw. Make sure to apply some good maintenance on it and this will last you for a good number of years.
If you believe that your projects are more on a professional side and needs extra effort, I think buying a specialized workstation would be wiser. However, there’s nothing wrong in saving some money for minor woodworking jobs.