Bench Construction: Let the legs begin

So I'm building a bench. I know that'll come as a shock to many of you, but I too need a place to build my projects on.

The boards milled & rabbeted, ready
to be cut to lenth.
I'm beginning with the stretchers - or as I'm making - panels. In order to construct the leg assemblies with as little a chance of racking and as much mass as possible I'm forgoing the normal stretcher assemblies and using a bastardized frame and panel design. The frames, and much of the bench, are made of Timberstrand (dimensional lumber made of OSB).

I began by milling the Timberstrand just as I would any other lumber. A few quick passes on the jointer, a pass or two through the planer, a final trim on the table saw and voila, flat & square boards. In order to make a dado (yes, I know it's actually a grove) in the middle of the frame pieces, I instead made a rabbet in two frame pieces and assembled them to make a dado. As I've was holding out for a Forrest Dado King, I made the rabbet using two passes on my standard Woodworker II blade. As the panel will be composed of an MDF/OSB lamination, I used relative dimensioning to set the depth exactly to each sheet goods thickness (they are actually not the same thickness, even though they're both nominally 3/4" thick). I then turned the board and cut the width of the rabbet to the same dimension as the depth (it won't matter if one sheet good panel is ever so slightly bigger than the other, they'll be cut via relative dimensioning too).

Gang cuts = perfect fits.
My next step was to take them over to my new Bosch Glide saw (no full review yet, but it's kickin' ass & takin' names). I cut one end on each board, ganged them and cut them all to the exact same length. I then used my Domino to join the frame panels. Woodpecker Clamping Squares helped keep the whole thing square.

Now that all the frames are made my next step is to cut and fit the panels, then glue an OSB frame & panel assembly to an MDF frame & panel assembly to make the final, bastard frame & panel assembly I plan to use. Then I'll have to finalize the legs and start thinking about the top. Much to do.

Ready for the panel.
Here's the whole album.

How did you attach your bench legs together?

p.s. - Sorry for all the linking, I got a bit carried away. I also just picked up a FlipHD, so here's a video of the fames to boot.


Wookbench Stretcher Panels from Dyami Plotke on Vimeo.