AlexPeel

Benchcrafted Crisscross Plans

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Benchcrafted have released the full install instructions for the crisscross:

http://benchcrafted.blogspot.com/2012/12/crisscross-instructions-now-available.html

Looks like the chop for the leg vise will need to be different then the original guild plans. Benchcrafted plans call for 19 inches of space for the mortise below the screw plus a couple extra inches. Looks like the new system is going to need a chop thats closer to the total height of the bench, or about 35".

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Doing a rough calculation by combining some measurements from the roubo plans and the new crisscross plans looks like the chop will need to be minimum 31.75 inches finished. This is how I came up with this:

4 inches for the top.

5 1/8 inches from the top of the leg to the center of the vise screw (from original ww roubo plans)

2 1/8 inches from the center of the screw to the top of the mortise for the crisscross ( from crisscross plans )

19 1/2 inches for the mortise ( from crisscross plans )

*1 inch, at least, below the mortise to bottom of the leg ( from crisscross plans )

I am going to at some point modify the ww roubo plans in sketchup to integrate the new crisscross, unless someone else has already done this? Anyone?

*On the actual chop benchcrafted has the mortise to bottom at 3/4 of an inch so really the chop would be 31 1/2 inches long. Measurement listed above is the minimum leg length.

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Alex,

You are correct regarding the need for a new chop if retrofitting. If you look on page 2 of the new Benchcrafted crisscross plans it states "Our Glide vises with roller brackets will require a new, longer chop". This is something that many people may not realize until after they order the new hardware.

Your calculations regarding the required chop length are correct as well. Using Marc and Arron's plans 31 1/2" would be the chops overall length.

I'm doing a fresh install of the crisscross (not a retrofit) and have been working on the Sketchup drawings to insure I've got it dialed in before I start. I'm still waiting for my hardware to arrive.

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You know, I look at this and it sure is cool...

But now that my bench is done, I'm not sure I have the energy to change it anytime soon....

Maybe after I finish 50 projects on the bench, then it will be time for a change...

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Scott,

Basically same boat as you. My build has been delayed until now for other reasons and it just so happens where I left off was the legs. Perfect timing for the crisscross which is in the mail.

I'm doing a fresh install of the crisscross (not a retofit) and have been working on the Sketchup drawings to insure I've got it dialed in before I start. I'm still waiting for my hardware to arrive.

Could you make these modifications available? I know enough SketchUp that I could do it myself but seeing as how you have already done all the hard work :)

Thanks.

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You know, I look at this and it sure is cool...

But now that my bench is done, I'm not sure I have the energy to change it anytime soon....

Maybe after I finish 50 projects on the bench, then it will be time for a change...

Ditto. If the new version were available before I built my bench, I'm sure I would have gone with it. But it would definitely be a bigger PITA to retrofit for the criss-cross than to just bend over and move the pin for the rest of my life. I've got what I've got, and I'm happy with it.

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You actually bend-over and change the pin? That's WAY too much effort for me...

I can't tell you how much racking i allow in my 'quick and dirty' work holding... I think i just set it about an inch and don't think it's moved since :)

While that's maybe an exaggeration, it's not much of one...

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I tried the lazy route at first, but I found that if I don't adjust the pin to at least close to the right hole, too much racking will cause the roller guides to shift out of alignment a little, and the chop won't operate smoothly after. I'd be surprised if I was the only one with that problem...I have those guides torqued down about as hard as they'll go. Anyway, I reluctantly started to use the thing as designed.

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Alex,

Sorry for not responding sooner. The thing I'm struggling with is how to deal with the long front rail and how it ties into the leg. The existing plans have the mortise and tenon associated with the long front rail occupying the same space as the new mortise for the crisscross. The crisscross plans explain how do deal with it for people who used the knock down method (bolting the long rails into the legs), which requires people wanting to retrofit the leg vise to install a new thicker front rail. They would then have to re-drill the bolt hole through the leg and into the new rail leaving the original bolt hole empty. The new bolt hole would be set back behind the crisscross mortise.

For those who followed Marc's method of using the draw bore technique for attaching the front rail may be in better shape. The mortise and tenon for the front rail stick into the crisscross mortise by about 3/16", so removing that much material from the existing tenon shouldn't cause any problems.

Since I'm starting from scratch I'm contemplating the best design to use with the draw bore technique.

I have attached a sketchup drawing that shows the following views, which are tabbed across the top of sketchup:

  1. The Original Layout shown with the crisscross mortise.
  2. Close up of the problem shown with where the bolt goes through the crisscross mortise.
  3. Knock down method with the new dimensions given in the crisscross installation instructions. I did not show where the original hole was and don't know how it would affect the new design supplied by Benchcrafted.
  4. Draw bore with the tenon trimmed down to avoid the crisscross mortise

I am still playing with the draw bore solution and will post a new file if I come up with something else.

Hopefully this will help anyone looking to incorporate the crisscross into their bench.

I posted the file in the sketchup section on this site here:

http://www.woodtalkonline.com/files/file/75-scott-seganti/

Please note I copied the front leg section from the original file supplied by Marc and modified it.

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If you look at the joinery using the xray mode it really helps you understand how everything is tying together.

I forgot to mention that there are some inherent problems with the Benchcrafted knock down solution. I laid out the sketchup file per their installation instructions.

  1. The tenon on the front rail is smaller then the mortise. I'm not sure why that did this but I would probably make the tenon fit tightly into the mortise or call Benchcrafted to find out their reasoning.

  2. The new method Benchcrafted employes for the knock down method is to move the bolt back (towards the back of the bench) so that the bolt is behind the Crisscross mortise. Because they are moving the bolt back; it now goes through the short rail's mortise and tenon joint. The counter sink for the bolt is only 1/16" away from the short rail mortise. This may be OK since the tenon will add support, but 1/16" is a little too close for my comfort.

Hopefully this all makes sense.

Cheers

Scott

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Did anyone find a way around this without using Marc's drawboring method and without moving the tenon back while using a wider rail?

 

What about drilling a hole for the knockdown joinery from below the leg and through the original (slightly trimmed down) tenon vertically instead of using draw bores on the "shorter tenon"??

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I am in the process of putting a video together that outlines your options for that front rail joinery. To answer your question (at least from my perspective); if you are using the knockdown method and want to incorporate the crisscross into your bench... there really is no better way then to use the wider rail and set the bolt behind the crisscross mortise cavity. It allows the tenon and the front rail to be pulled into the leg, making a nice strong joint.

 

With that being said, I also think you could try the suggestion you made and be OK... I'm just not sure it's the best solution. Out of curiosity, what reservations do you have with the wider rail and shorter tenon?

 

Even though I don't recommend it, I put together a sketchup file for you showing your suggestion. You can download it here:

 

http://www.woodtalkonline.com/files/file/83-knockdown-hardware-bottom/

 

If you try this as a solution, I would be curious to know how it turned out.

 

Cheers,

Scott

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So this is what I came up... I think the photos are pretty self explanatory... It's basically an 8" long 3/16" steel plate as wide as the crisscross tenon is deep... The recess is big enough for the bolt's head to remain out of the way of the crisscross and I think the tenon will still be long enough to provide adequate support.

 

I was opposed to the wider rail with the shorter tenon and the bolt behind the crisscross mortise because I already have the front legs and rail milled to the specs on the plans and didn't want to build new ones if avoidable... It was my bad really... I didn't re-read the crisscross instructions before milling them and in all the haste and excitement to get finished I forgot they were different...

 

I think this works nice... If someone has some structural input that could convince me to build new legs and rail, please, do convince me... I don't want the whole thing falling apart on me...

 

I couldn't upload the photos here, so, I post the links:

 

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B1Pyk2K_pvgtNGtBNzAybGg4eXM/edit?usp=sharing

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B1Pyk2K_pvgtelRvN0JQYWpMbmc/edit?usp=sharing

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B1Pyk2K_pvgtVUJkaGVSRXdRa3M/edit?usp=sharing

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B1Pyk2K_pvgtblU2bm1QdW1DdVE/edit?usp=sharing

 

Cheers

pw

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I like it... I think your solution should work well. You'll have to let us know how it works out when everything is together.

 

I was just able to download the file without any problem. I posted it when I sent the last comment... maybe it needed some time. I think I like your new solutions better anyway.

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