Poor Man’s Workbench Part 1

As you will see I don’t have the steadiest hand when it comes to a jig saw nor do I have a ton of room and I have a limited budget so I decided to build a modular workbench. I wanted a scroll saw functionality, a table saw, belt sander and a vacuum former. I had an extra jigsaw, a belt sander and a circular saw.

While some of my skills need work I did draw all of my plans up in a CAD software to avoid measurement issues. If you have any suggestions please comment below.

I started off by cutting a 8 1/2″ x 11″ hole out of my workbench. I decided on a 8 1/2″ x 11″ hole because it is the size printer I have, it fits several tools and this is going to be for working on small projects. The inner line is for the 1/2″ frame that will hold inserts.

I did a terrible job cutting out the hole with a jigsaw and the blade was dull but it got the job done.

The frame will sit below the hole and provides a 1/2″ lip to hold inserts. Wish I had a nail or brad gun.

The module insert frame bolted in place. I did at least counter sink the screw holes. I will had 4 more bolts before calling it good.

Module inserted and extra bolts installed.

Extra module blanks cut out and ready to go.

First module is a jigsaw. I made a template and cut out a hole for the blade (not perfect) then drilled holes to mount the jigsaw to the module. The bottom of the jigsaw has a plate that can be removed. I used these screw holes to mount the saw to the board.

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Jigsaw mounted to modular insert and extra module inserts ready to go.

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Gallery of all photos

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LibreCAD Maybe its just me

LibreCAD is a free opensource CAD software that is available on Windows, Linux & MAC.

So for some reason I had a time figuring out how to use the text commands in LibreCAD to draw lines at specific angles at specific lengths. I think it has something to do with ortho vs polar degrees but I’m still not sure. I have it in my head that it should be 0/360, 45, 90, 135, 180, 225, 270, 315, 360/0 but instead it is 90, 45, 0/360, 315, 270, 225, 180, 135. Again I might be alone on this but that’s how I visual it in my head while drawing.

Unable to find a graphic at the time, again probably my fault, so I made one.

LibreCAD Degrees Reference Graphic
LibreCAD Degrees Reference Graphic



Found a wiki entry explaining the anti-clockwise 360 degrees

Opensource CAD Software

Archimedes OpenCAD
Archimedes OpenCAD

Archimedes is a free and opensource CAD software. The interface is comfortable, fairly easy to use and is similar to commercial platforms. Exportable formats are svg (vector), pdf, xml and arc which is Archimedes’ native format. The downside is that documentation seems to be lacking and I maybe wrong here but there doesn’t seem to be a way to change the unit of measurement. With that said I still love it and will be using it.

You can learn more and download Archimedes here http://archimedescad.github.io/Archimedes/