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Old 07-27-2007, 03:34 PM   #1
bobs409
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Question Work bench height?

I'm trying to figure out how high to build my workbench. Any ideas on how to do this? I'm 5' 7" if that needs to be considered.

I did a search here but couldn't find anything. I'm thinking about 36 inches??? Too high? Too low?

I'd appreciate any input on this as I'm soon going to start building this.

Thanks,



Bob
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Old 07-27-2007, 03:45 PM   #2
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Default Re: Work bench height?

Depends on what your are going to be working on and what YOU feel is a comfortable height. Since you're building it, you can make it virtually any height you want.

I'm 5'-10" and my work height is ~35.5". I find that is a good height for me to sit at the bench as well as to work on small tasks as well as big tasks while sitting or standing. Vise work is at a good height, too.

When standing, you don't want to have to "reach" too high or too low. You're arms should be at a confortable bend.
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:05 PM   #3
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Default Re: Work bench height?

36" for me and I am 5'8".

My welding table is 36" also but when I use the welding fixtures, the work height becomes 38" to 39" which is actually more comfortable for that type of work.

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Old 07-27-2007, 04:09 PM   #4
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Default Re: Work bench height?

Speaking of vises, make sure you put extra blocking underneath the bench for mounting the vise. Outlets recessed into the front of the bench come in handy also.
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:16 PM   #5
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Default Re: Work bench height?

Wrist hight.

For me its 36" I'm 6"1" It's perfect.
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:30 PM   #6
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Default Re: Work bench height?

No set height,just whatever works for you so you dont get a back ache
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Old 07-27-2007, 04:36 PM   #7
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Default Re: Work bench height?

I'm 5'10" and have found benches between 34" to 36" to be just right for preventing back pain from leaning down towards what you are working on.
You may want to mock up a few scenarios to see what suits your needs, since I am slightly taller.
I do however find my 6" vise to be higher than I would like when sitting on the 36" bench. My next bench, slated for the fall, will have the vise on a lower level.
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Old 07-27-2007, 05:07 PM   #8
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Default Re: Work bench height?

Also, kitchen counter heights are generally 36", so you can judge if this is OK for you.
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Old 07-27-2007, 09:12 PM   #9
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Default Re: Work bench height?

I got to be different, I'm 6' and mines 42".
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Old 07-27-2007, 11:21 PM   #10
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Default Re: Work bench height?

I'm even stranger than drbill, I guess. I am 5'10" and my two work benches are 47 inches high. I took my cue from the gunsmiths I worked with a few years ago and wanted a workbench that I would not have to bend over when I am standing. Everything is just about chest high, which is perfect for rebuilding carburetors or any small detailed work. Also, my shop stools still keep me about chest high for any long hours at the bench.

If you can, I'd suggest taking note of how you are comfortable when you do work. And, if you can, build something that you can take a few inches off of.

I made a mistake and went way too high with my benches when I first made them. My wife came down to see them, and she asked, "isn't that a little high?" Across from the benches I could only see her head. I knew then that they were perhaps a little too high.
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Old 07-27-2007, 11:51 PM   #11
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Default Re: Work bench height?

If you can, build a mock up. Use saw horses and cardboard boxes if nothing else. Try different heights, and simulate the type of tasks you'll be doing. Particulary those repetitive type things, or detail work, that may have you hunched over for long periods. By the way, mine are good at 36", I'm 5'11".
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Old 07-27-2007, 11:55 PM   #12
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Default Re: Work bench height?

Depends what you're going to be doing. A taller bench is best for fine detail work that you would normally have to bend over to look at. Use a lower bench height for rough tasks or when you will have to lift heavy parts.

For a starting point at choosing your bench height, stand with your arms straight down at your side. Turn your hand up so that your palm is facing down and is level with the floor. This is the lowest bench you can logically reach without bending over.

A taller bench also affords the option of more storage below.

Another thing to consider is the depth. Get too deep and you won't be able to reach anything on shelves or in cabinets above.

I'm 5'-11" and have a 36" tall bench. It's good for most work but a bit low when I'm assembling things. I'm planning to add another bench along the side of my garage. It will be about 42" tall.
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Old 07-28-2007, 12:01 AM   #13
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Default Re: Work bench height?

I'm only 5'9", and my current workbenches are 42" off the ground. When I build my new ones in the new garage, I'll probably lower them to 39-40" just so I can reach any cabinetry behind them. I don't do any real grunt work on the workbench, I usually just do that on the ground.
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Old 07-28-2007, 01:19 AM   #14
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Default Re: Work bench height?

I went through our house and found which counter top was the best height for me, and made my work bench the same height.

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Old 07-28-2007, 07:49 AM   #15
bobs409
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Default Re: Work bench height?

Thanks for the input everyone. After much thought and considering all the replies, I think I'm going for a finished height of 38 inches.

36 seems a bit low to me. I think I'll be sitting at this more than standing and the average workshop stool they sell is 29 inches high so that influenced my decision a good bit.

Well, Lowes, here I come!


Bob
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Old 07-29-2007, 11:47 AM   #16
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Default Re: Work bench height?

Dxdexter and Mulepackin nailed it. Your kitchen counter is a great test bench for the height of your work bench. When the l'il lady is out shopping, take a small project into the kitchen. Place phone books on the floor or the counter top to determine the perfect working height for YOU. I say to take a small project so you actually work on the height for 10-15 minutes to get a true test

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Old 07-29-2007, 12:14 PM   #17
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Default Re: Work bench height?

A few have alluded to it and Boiler commented on it - it depends on what you are doing. I'd recommend having a couple different heights available depending on what all you are going to be doing. Some tasks are better done seated in a chair or on a stool - so a bench should be available for those. Others are better done standing. Larger items might need a much lower bench to get suitable leverage on things.

I've been toying with an adjustable bench of some sort. Maybe something like this built into a section of one of my workbenches (although not quite that fancy or expensive):

Lift Table
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Old 07-29-2007, 02:19 PM   #18
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Default Re: Work bench height?

Quote:
Originally Posted by redneckprofessor View Post
I'm even stranger than drbill, I guess. I am 5'10" and my two work benches are 47 inches high. I took my cue from the gunsmiths I worked with a few years ago and wanted a workbench that I would not have to bend over when I am standing. Everything is just about chest high, which is perfect for rebuilding carburetors or any small detailed work. Also, my shop stools still keep me about chest high for any long hours at the bench.

If you can, I'd suggest taking note of how you are comfortable when you do work. And, if you can, build something that you can take a few inches off of.

I made a mistake and went way too high with my benches when I first made them. My wife came down to see them, and she asked, "isn't that a little high?" Across from the benches I could only see her head. I knew then that they were perhaps a little too high.
redneck/sorry to jump the topic but I need a part for my 36cal colt replica ,Any ideas on where I can find it?
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