Video: Easy-to-Build $50 Workbench
Buy the wood and start cutting
Photo 1: Frames
Assemble the frames for the work surface and lower shelf.
Photo 2: Legs
Screw the legs to the work surface frame.
Photo 3: Lower frame
Flip over the bench and attach the lower shelf frame. Use gallon paint cans to support the lower shelf frame when you’re attaching it to the main workbench legs.
Photo 4: Plywood work surfaces
Screw the plywood to the frames.
Photo 5: Top shelf frame
Assemble the top shelf frame.
Photo 6: Top shelf
Add the plywood.
Photo 7: Top shelf legs
Attach the top shelf legs upside down.
Photo 8: Put it all together
Screw the legs to the bench and add the backer boards
This sturdy 30-in. x 6-ft.-long workbench is the ultimate in simplicity. It’s made from only fifteen 8-ft.-long 2x4s and one sheet of 1/2-in. plywood. Follow the cutting diagrams to cut the parts: Figure B to cut the plywood tops, then Figure C to cut all the framing. Use the lengths provided in the Cutting List (see Additional Information below). You can either screw the framing together with 3-in. screws or hand- or power-nail it together with 3-in. nails. Screw the plywood down with 1-5/8-in. screws.
To make these project plans even easier to follow, we tinted the parts that get added at each step.
Construction and Cutting Details
All the dimensions and pieces are shown in Figures A, B and C, and keyed to the Cutting List in Additional Information (below). All together you’ll need fifteen 2 x 4 x 8s and one sheet of 1/2-in. plywood.
Good light is mandatory for any workbench. Buy an inexpensive 4-ft. shop light and screw it right to the underside of the top shelf.
Forget extension cords. Mount a power strip to one of the legs and you’ll have all the power you need for tools and chargers. Use its switch to control the light.
Whether you cover the whole back or just the lower half, keep down the bench clutter by stowing all of those tools you use every day within easy reach.
Yes, it’ll cost as much as or more than the bench, but what workbench would be complete without one?
Project PDF Files
Click the links below to download the construction drawings and cutting list for this project.
Required Tools for this Project
Have the necessary tools for this DIY project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.
- Circular saw
- Cordless drill
- Miter saw
- Safety glasses
- Tape measure
Required Materials for this Project
Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here’s a list.
- 1-5/8-in. drywall screws
- 3-in. drywall screws
- 4 x 8 x 1/2-in. plywood