MFT-Style Workbench

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Andy Kev.

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Thanks, everyone! The credit for this design goes to AtomicRyan at FOG. Had he not shared his project and YouTube videos, I doubt I would have considered it. My work is derivative of his.

I found some more receipts, and the revised cost for the workbench is about £2,750 based on today's exchange rate. I think this is still a bargain when considering the cost of buying Festool MFT/3 tables to have a similar surface area.

As this is not a museum piece, I'm not concerned with accidentally drilling or cutting the top. When the top becomes unusable, it is easy enough to replace. A full sheet of 19mm Valchromat is €81 (about £70). If my cunning plan on drilling the dog holes so they don't break out works, I'll be able to flip the top when it is ready and use the second side for a while.

If anyone is interested, I can provide the SketchUP .skp file I used for the design, as well as the item24 document.

On the subject of cost, I just got an ad email from Dictum advertising something much, much simpler but structurally along the same conceptual lines:


You can only guess what they would charge for your setup if it were available.
 

MikeK

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On the subject of cost, I just got an ad email from Dictum advertising something much, much simpler but structurally along the same conceptual lines:

You can only guess what they would charge for your setup if it were available.

I didn't see the Dictum advertising, but last week a sales representative from Item24 visited me to look at my bench and give me some small corporate goodies. He works at the Hirschberg office, which is not too far from me, and likes to see what the customers are doing with the product. His first question was "You made this with our stuff?" I assured him the answer was yes to both questions, and showed him inventory sheet I had not yet thrown out. He spent about 20 minutes looking over the workbench before leaving.

Part of my basement clearout so I can expand my shop is getting rid of 15 years worth of RC helicopters, parts, and tools and a pro photo studio setup. I advertised the heli stuff on a RC heli forum, and the guy who was interested lives about 500 meters from me. This made collection much easier! He came over yesterday to load up his car, and it turns out he is a hobbyist woodworker with lots of Festool equipment. He has been looking for a workbench like mine since he does not like the Festool version, so I might be seeing him again. Now I have to find a new home for the photo equipment.
 

Andy Kev.

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I didn't see the Dictum advertising, but last week a sales representative from Item24 visited me to look at my bench and give me some small corporate goodies. He works at the Hirschberg office, which is not too far from me, and likes to see what the customers are doing with the product. His first question was "You made this with our stuff?" I assured him the answer was yes to both questions, and showed him inventory sheet I had not yet thrown out. He spent about 20 minutes looking over the workbench before leaving.

Part of my basement clearout so I can expand my shop is getting rid of 15 years worth of RC helicopters, parts, and tools and a pro photo studio setup. I advertised the heli stuff on a RC heli forum, and the guy who was interested lives about 500 meters from me. This made collection much easier! He came over yesterday to load up his car, and it turns out he is a hobbyist woodworker with lots of Festool equipment. He has been looking for a workbench like mine since he does not like the Festool version, so I might be seeing him again. Now I have to find a new home for the photo equipment.
You want to be careful! It sounds like you could end up getting corporate sponsorship or at least being a poster boy for the firm.
 

Fixes

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Dear Mike,

I have read every letter of your build report with admiration and grateful respect. Such a nice job, such an eye for detail, what a nice result! Also, how nice of you to share this all. Thank you.
I actually came across this forum when I finally decided to start building an MFT bench after about a year of keeping a well stored link to the FB/MFT Workbench videos, you are referring to as well. Only, limited by my workspace I would have to downsize it to about 2x1m. And then, as sent from heaven, there was MikeK:)
At this point I am fully dedicated to start this project, fully inspired by your achievements. If you allow me. Looking at all the available info, however, It would be great if I could ask you a couple of short questions.

1. What was the reason for you to choose to extend the drawer side panels to the top 80x40 's in stead of to the catching 10mm panel?

2. I am considering replacing the 80x40s (920) supporting the MFTtop ends by 40x40s. This would create a 40mm bigger access for storing longer items on the open shelf. As they are paralleled by another one a bit lower, this shouldn't affect the rigidity too much and there as those last ones are slotted as wel, ample clamping capability remains. What are your thoughts about this?

3. If I am counting correctly, there is about cm space between opposite systainer shelves. I was thinking to install one ore more 13cm dia hard PVC tubes in this space. That is longitudinally, centered between the systainers, extending from the one short tables end to the 'backwall' of the drawers. This could allow storage of longer items perfectly. Could you share you ideas and this?

4. As I am based in Belgium we basically share the same supply market more or less. I will most probably order with item24 as well for the initial package, the items you post ordered (top support) and the guide rail extrusion. Did you by any chance keep the file in the engineering tool or a parts list? If so, would you be willing to share it? Also, if you are happy with the slides you used for the drawers and systainer shelves, could you share a link to the store you ordered them from?

I am pretty enthusiastic to start this project. Looking forward to any reaction you are willing to share.

Regards, Maarten
 

MikeK

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Hello Maarten,

Welcome to the UKW and thank you for the kind words.

Here are the replies to your questions:

1. I didn't think of an easy way to tie the side panels to the catch tray and didn't want to add another section of 40x40 extrusion on each side. Additionally, the 10mm thick catch tray fits inside the vertical 40x40mm supports, so I would have to cut "wings" on the sheet to fit in the additional extrusions for support. This certainly could be done, but the lack of side access to that part of the catch tray hasn't been an issue.

2. I don't think there would be any issues with replacing just the end pieces with 40x40mm extrusion, or even the two long top horizontal pieces. I used the 80x40mm on the four sides because I wanted two channels along the top for attaching brackets and clamps. I can still fit my chubby arms anywhere on the catch tray. :)

3. Your suggestion sounds like a great idea to utilize dead space! My workbench has about 12cm of space in the center between the backs of the Systainer trays. This can be extended to about 18cm if the slide trays are positioned near, but not beyond, the front edge of the 40x40mm vertical supports. I made sure none of the drawers or trays extended beyond the front edge of the supports so they would not interfere with anything clamped to the supports. I also had to change the two duplex outlets on the sides because the plastic housing prevented me from clamping large pieces to the side.

4. I just edited the first post in this thread to add the SketchUp SKP file and the Item24 PDF. I use the free 2017 version of SketchUp, but the file should be compatible with other versions of SketchUp. Unfortunately, I can't convert the file to DWG or any of the other CADD formats.

I am very happy with the slides. I saw the slides on the German Amazon site below, but bought them directly from the vendor because they were less expensive with free shipping.


Here is the link to the slides from S&O Handelsgesellschaft mbH. I used 400mm slides for the side Systainer trays and 500mm slides for the four end drawers.


I still have the router template used to mill the keyhole slots into the extrusion. You are welcome to it if you want it, and it should work with any extrusion. However, I made the template for use with the Festool OF1010, Festool 484176 13.8mm copy ring, and 8mm carbide cutter. I bought two of the carbide cutters, but never used the second cutter. You are welcome to one of the cutters as well. The extrusion is easy to mill using a router and carbide cutter and making multiple passes.

I don't have the router template for the Systainer trays, but have eight spare trays in 19mm plywood you can have. One is for the original Systainer footprint used by the VAC SYS and the other seven are for the next generation of Systainers. All but one of the trays is painted and ready for installation. The unpainted tray was my router template test tray and I forgot to paint it.

If you are ever in the Frankfurt/Darmstadt/Mannheim area, please let me know. I am happy to let anyone visit and exchange ideas.
 

Fixes

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Hello Mike,

Thank you for your prompt and sharing reply! I committed to first replying and then having a look at the added files in the thread.
As I am using the same OF1010 with (I will have to check or order) probably the same copy ring, I am indeed interested in the template and surely in for buying your spare cutter.
As a matter of fact, I will be traveling from Belgium to Austria (south of Salzburg) next Wednesday (23) with a return drive on Sunday (27/3), driving trough that area, no kidding! If any of these days would suit you, I'ld be more than happy to pay a worthfull visit. Let me know so I can calculate an estimate timing. Is there a way to exchange confidential info like address and phone numbers, via this forum?

Maarten
 

MikeK

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Hello Maaten,

If you make one more post, you will be able to send private messages (Conversations).
 

Droogs

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Careful Maarten. He might just try to give you a great big lump of noisy useless Austrian metal he tries to pretend is a planer/thickness to dump of the manufacturer's stoop. :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:
 

Spectric

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That is another work of art, you have been busy and any wood going through your workshop will think it has gone to hospital it is so clinical and it will match the router table build, yet another great build.

Nice to see someone terminating stranded cables with ferrules and using Wago connectors and not chocolate block.
 

MikeK

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Careful Maarten. He might just try to give you a great big lump of noisy useless Austrian metal he tries to pretend is a planer/thickness to dump of the manufacturer's stoop. :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:

That "Austrian" lump has a new home in Wiesbaden. I listed it on the fee-free German eBay for local sales at the bargain price of €550, and it sold in four minutes. The buyer picked it up the same evening.

The only Austrian thing in that is the label (maybe) !

I suspect the labels are printed at the same factory as well.
 

Spectric

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Mike, surprised you did not use any Microjig dovetail slots in your top, for me they have been what has made my 20mm tops so useful. 20mm holes give X & Y at 90° and location but with those slots you have gret clamping and with the threaded fittings you can get any angle on a fence which for some jobs has been a real bonus. I use my Makita rail to guide a router and can set the workpiece at the required angle to get easy repetative housings. Will be getting a proper sled for the router soon from FC tools, that will actually run on the rail and not along it.
 

MikeK

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Mike, surprised you did not use any Microjig dovetail slots in your top, for me they have been what has made my 20mm tops so useful. 20mm holes give X & Y at 90° and location but with those slots you have gret clamping and with the threaded fittings you can get any angle on a fence which for some jobs has been a real bonus. I use my Makita rail to guide a router and can set the workpiece at the required angle to get easy repetative housings. Will be getting a proper sled for the router soon from FC tools, that will actually run on the rail and not along it.

Roy, so far I haven't found any limitations when cutting angles on my worktop. The large TSO MTR-18 allows me to set any angle on the worktop in 1/2-degree increments.

Since I am using the worktop as an assembly table as well as cutting surface, I don't want to risk breaking off the edges of the dovetail slots. I don't abuse the worktop, but I don't pamper it either.
 

Spectric

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I had not looked at the TSO triangle but it is clever, fixed by 20mm dogs and the triangle pivots to any angle, I like the idea and reminded me of a sextant.

I don't have a worktop with any holes, did not like retrieving things that fell through the holes so I now have a solid top with clamp down sections that have the holes and dovetail slots but I treat as consumables, but have never damaged any slot edges. I have Dennis from HOW to thank for many ideas but my new bench is stalled and held up in the thinking process.
 
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