I am excited and I hope that you are too! The intro for the plywood workbench series was announced recently here and the first episode went out today so this is just a heads up for you. You may be surprised that the whole series is free on Woodworking Masterclasses and goes out two weeks before YouTube. If you do like what we do please tell your friends about it so we can continue to supply top-notch video work for teaching and training. If you are not subscribed and you want to enjoy all of the free content for learning new skills in fine woodworking, tool techniques and methods of work, go to WWMC.

You can view the introduction to the series at the end of this post.

In this series it’s the first time we’ve relied more on using a machine to rip and crosscut material. The bandsaw features throughout the work to lighten then load a bit. I plan on subsequent bandsaw technique videos for those struggling to fine tune and use such a machine to know what can be expected from it as a work horse and it will help whether the machines are large or small, old or new.

Soon the series will be out on YouTube too, but we like to give some priority to our members on Woodworking Masterclasses. You have been so faithful and supportive of our work over the years and I hope we can rely on your continued help.

If you are already a free subscriber or a paying member please continue encouraging your friends to join us and help us to grow the community. I designed this plywood workbench series to help bridge the ever-growing gap between the different spheres engaged in woodworking. My picture below should tell the story about how happy I am to bring this workbench to the hand tool platform of woodworking!

Here is the introduction for you to see what we have coming up.

Click here to go to Woodworking Masterclasses and view Episode 1.


  1. Larry Lumley on 8 February 2019 at 2:48 pm

    Hi Paul looking forward to seeing this one. I want to update my bench it’s in need of a new top.
    I think a laminate top would be the buisines.
    Regards Larry.

  2. nemo on 8 February 2019 at 7:54 pm

    Just downloaded the video and had a very pleasant and educational time watching it.

    Many have said it before but I’ll say it again: the quality of your videos is very impressive. Especially when viewing some other videos (either on woodworking or other topics) I quickly realize how spoilt I’ve become by your video-workmanship. The lighting, the audio-level, the close-ups when needed, different angles of view, the editing. In short, professional (though I know you dislike that word)

    The Workmate is what I use as a bench at the moment. It’s not perfect but it gets the job done, though occasionally with a bit of figuring out how to tackle a problem. It’s nice to see that you don’t consider yourself above using one. The trick is to always work as good as you can within your own specific limitations (regarding tools, space, medical conditions, etc.)

    Looking forward to the next episodes.

  3. JulioT on 10 February 2019 at 10:03 pm

    I think that this plywood workbench will be a very, very interesting series and job. My own workbench (a strange hybrid between Paul’s bench and other benchs I’ve seen on books, made from a strong and heavy old birch table, of which I had the top and the frame), has a steel tail vise and its jaws are covered with a three-layer birch plywood cover, in wich I have drilled the holes for a pair or Veritas dogs. The assembly is rock-solid. I can imagine a workbench made as Paul suggests; I’m sure it will be sturdy and rock-solid too. If it is cut by bandsaw, by table saw or with a kitchen knife is not important for me. I think the idea is excellent, and I thank Paul and team for showing it to us.

  4. Steve on 11 February 2019 at 12:19 am

    This is actually interesting to me. I have a friend that wants to woodwork, but has limited space and tools. I have been considering getting a tabletop bandsaw, like the Wen on Amazon. There is no way i could bring my contractor table saw to his house to help him. But a small bandsaw i could drive over and leave it with him a few weeks to help build this bench. Then he would have a solid bench to get to hand tool woodworking on. Thanks!

  5. Will on 11 February 2019 at 1:55 pm

    Another interesting and informative project, as always. Please include a relative cost of the two workbenches – hardwood vs plywood. Is the plywood approach half the cost of hardwood?
    Best, Will

    • Bill on 20 March 2019 at 11:35 pm

      I am weighing up the cost of each version. The cost of the ply is a known, but I have a load of rescued roof timbers and a wondering if all the planing and sharing is worth the effort.

  6. Leonarx on 23 February 2019 at 6:30 am

    Another example where Paul’s “Bridge” falls down.
    You have to own a bandsaw, without a workbench, to need this solution.

    Would your friend keep the Bandsaw – in his limited space – where he wants to learn hand-tools?

    Would you take it back to your home, to store next to your Contractor Table Saw?

    Why not cut the components at your place, on your saw, with your friend helping/watching/learning, then transport components to his place for glue-up?

    Better still, put the Bandsaw money towards ‘real’ wood & hand tools. He could start using hand tools straight away, saving space, and keeping all his fingers!

    • Paul Sellers on 23 February 2019 at 8:19 am

      “Another example where Paul’s Bridge falls down.” but you don’t say where or what the others are as there are others stacked up. It seems there is but one negative comment and that comes from yours here. I still don’t see at all why you are so negative about such an awesome strategy but I did expect one or two.
      Owning a bandsaw is not like owning six other machines to surface plane, thickness plane, tenon, mortise, crosscut and so on. It is one machine standing in a 2′ x 2′ space in the corner of the garage. It is also very hand for such work as is shown as well as the ongoing need for curved work. I am not sure why you are so critical and wonder how helpful your comments are. The bridge is stout and firm. The bandsaw tucks away quite neatly if you know anything about woodworking machines and it does take the smallest footprint.
      “Real wood and hand tools.” This again is silly. It ‘s silly because you have truly missed the point. The plywood, whichever way you slice it, is real wood.

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