The Manly-Man’s workbench, part II (and tips on using epoxy!)

And now for part II! Here are the pictures I promised of the finished workbench top. Please excuse the glare in the photo. It’s rather unsightly but it does give you a clue as to the glass-like finish of the epoxy.

After spending hours painting a custom design on top of this workbench, we then had to answer the question: “How are we going to protect this?” The answer is epoxy.  We picked up a box of mix-when-ready epoxy at Menards, and decided to experiment. The results are gorgeous. It really is easy to use. I DO have a few tips to share if you decide to finish a table top this way…

1. Seal the surface BEFORE  you epoxy (if you’re covering something porous, like wood) otherwise you’ll have bubbles galore in your finish. Not cool. I used Mod Podge to seal the whole top before we applied the epoxy and it worked like a charm. You can see that final result is crystal clear.

2. Cover the floor – the epoxy is self-leveling, which means it pours off the edges of whatever you’re working on. Cardboard is easy to pick up and throw away and keeps it from soaking through and leaving a permanent glob.

3. Use a square of cardboard to spread it out. It’s not rocket science – any household thing (that’s disposable) will work – you just need to persuade the epoxy all over the surface to ensure good coverage.

4. Hover a gas blow-torch over the surface to remove the bubbles from the epoxy before/as it dries. This sounds crazy but it works.

 

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Here you have it! After months of use it still looks great.

workbench cropped

                                                       In case you were curious, here’s the base. Simple 2 x 4 construction, waiting for us to complete a few                                                            drawers and shelves for storage. I’m contemplating painting the base in a durable black gloss … 🙂

 As a final note, if you decide to wipe it clean, something gentle like vinegar and dawn dish soap will do the trick. Spills like wood glue (even hot glue) should scrape right off.  We are very happy with the results.

Good luck on your next project!

~ The Woodworker’s Wife

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