Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

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SoupOrMan
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Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Tue Dec 13, 2016 7:57 am

Long story short: building a new workbench to replace my old one since it's shakier than a epileptic junkie on the San Andreas Fault. Gonna mount my Lee Classic Cast Turret Press and a vise to it. The plan is simple enough: two 36x72" boxes made of 2x4, 6 4x4 legs, and lockable caster wheels to move the bench out of the way when I need to open up a shooting lane in my pellet gun/hockey range. I'm putting two sheets of 3/4" plywood on the top box for the main surface and one sheet of 2/4" plywood on the bottom box as a storage space. The current plan is to not have any overhang on the top layer of the box, the bench surface will be flush with the sides of the box. My questions are these: should I have some overhang wherever I mount the press and just mount it to the tabletop? How much should I have, then? Would it noticeably damage the strength of the table if I drilled down through the plywood sheets and the wood of the box itself to run long mounting bolts through it?

I normally don't do this kind of stuff (very long, boring, and often-heard story about Dad and his ability to ruin fun and education by forcing himself into every aspect of a how-to project goes here) so I thought I might ask the woodworkers here before setting out on this project.

So: leave a lip or drill down through a short side of the box and mount it through that way?
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Denis » Tue Dec 13, 2016 8:14 am

Sounds like a fun project. Woodbutchery is not my thing, but as far as mounting a reloading press goes, I would suggest figuring out how sturdy you think the bench/base/mounting needs to be, then double that... big bolts, nuts and washers *through* the mounting surface are essential (much better than screws *into* it), and put metal sheet between the bottom of the press and any wood surface, so it can't bite in.

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Netpackrat » Tue Dec 13, 2016 11:23 am

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Darrell » Tue Dec 13, 2016 3:51 pm

If you mount a vise, be sure to put it on a corner, and have it overhang enough so the inside jaw face is slightly outside the edge of the table.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby HTRN » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:53 am

Ive previously posted on what i think is the best setup - butcherblock top with tslots, square tube frame, high enough so you can put 3 roller cabinets underneath. :ugeek:
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Precision » Wed Dec 14, 2016 3:06 am

For the top, I would screw / bolt the lower ply section to the 2x4 frame and glue and screw (from the bottom) the top layer of ply to that layer. I would have a slight overhang (1 inch) to allow for some stand off of the press and ease of the parts moving. Also, I would be tempted to mount the press on its own piece of ply and develop a mounting system so I could hot swap items as needed.

That could be as simple as a 1 sq foot piece of ply with 4 bolt holes. Then any other piece would be mounted on a similar board. or mount in that tracking stuff.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Dec 14, 2016 5:49 am

HTRN wrote:Ive previously posted on what i think is the best setup - butcherblock top with tslots, square tube frame, high enough so you can put 3 roller cabinets underneath. :ugeek:


And do that for under $200?
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Dec 14, 2016 5:53 am

Denis wrote:Sounds like a fun project. Woodbutchery is not my thing, but as far as mounting a reloading press goes, I would suggest figuring out how sturdy you think the bench/base/mounting needs to be, then double that... big bolts, nuts and washers *through* the mounting surface are essential (much better than screws *into* it), and put metal sheet between the bottom of the press and any wood surface, so it can't bite in.

Photos, we love photos!


There will be quite a few bolts to make it easier to break down, as I'm taking it with me if I should ever move out of my current house.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby HTRN » Fri Dec 16, 2016 2:02 pm

SoupOrMan wrote:
HTRN wrote:Ive previously posted on what i think is the best setup - butcherblock top with tslots, square tube frame, high enough so you can put 3 roller cabinets underneath. :ugeek:


And do that for under $200?

Good, fast or cheap, pick one. :ugeek: :mrgreen:
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Denis » Fri Dec 16, 2016 4:07 pm

HTRN wrote:Ive previously posted on what i think is the best setup - butcherblock top with tslots, square tube frame, high enough so you can put 3 roller cabinets underneath. :ugeek:


How about a link for the hard of thinking, please?

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby HTRN » Fri Dec 16, 2016 7:58 pm

I can't due to being on the phone, but if you search my user name and reloading benches in the thread title, you should find it easy.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:45 pm

HTRN wrote:
SoupOrMan wrote:
HTRN wrote:Ive previously posted on what i think is the best setup - butcherblock top with tslots, square tube frame, high enough so you can put 3 roller cabinets underneath. :ugeek:


And do that for under $200?

Good, fast or cheap, pick one. :ugeek: :mrgreen:


Had to go with cheap. It needs to be portable in case I should ever move to a new house.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Jered » Sat Dec 17, 2016 6:34 am

If you want a smooth surface, you should put tempered hardboard as the top layer.

Also, measure the doors that you want to take them through. I built a couple of workbenches and they were light enough that I could pick them up. I just hauled them out of the house on a hand truck.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Denis » Sat Dec 17, 2016 9:02 am

HTRN wrote:I can't due to being on the phone, but if you search my user name and reloading benches in the thread title, you should find it easy.


Thanks! This is a link to the search results.

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Frankingun » Sat Dec 17, 2016 7:25 pm

Netpackrat wrote:https://inlinefabrication.com/collections/lee/products/lee-classic-turret

/thread


Do you or anyone else use those, and do you like them?
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Netpackrat » Sat Dec 17, 2016 10:12 pm

Frankingun wrote:
Netpackrat wrote:https://inlinefabrication.com/collections/lee/products/lee-classic-turret

/thread


Do you or anyone else use those, and do you like them?


I have their mount setup and roller handle for my Dillon Square Deal B and I like them a lot.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Tue Jan 10, 2017 7:39 am

benchymcbenchface.jpg


So there it is, sans a coat of paint. 42" high, 2 layers of 3/4" plywood on the top surface. I have locking casters on it to be able to move it around the basement as projects (and my pellet gun range) require. I'm planning on adding my grandfather's old 4" vise (since I have it already and don't need to spend any money on it) and my reloading press onto it, leaving the other end open for whatever else I might need to do. I think a riser mount for the press might be a bit too much considering the height.

But yeah, that's my new bench for any firearms or household projects.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby First Shirt » Tue Jan 10, 2017 2:04 pm

Nice! Looks pretty sturdy, and well thought-out.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Tue Jan 10, 2017 10:58 pm

If all else fails I can lock the wheels and use it for extra shelter in case of a tornado.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Old Grafton » Wed Jan 11, 2017 12:43 am

You just built my first shop workbench (with casters, which is a great idea). That bench of mine, 8' long, built 42 years ago, is now bolted to one interior wall of my current 50'x50' shop building (with an extra 6' added). The construction looks exactly like mine and mine has had everything from V8 engines to rifles to wristwatches repaired on it. Mine's in it's 3rd building now; you'll never wear yours out!! Wear well!! :D
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Jan 11, 2017 7:24 am

And in theory I can undo the bolts, break it down for moving and reassemble it in a new workspace in an hour's time or so by myself. That solves some of the problems of getting it through doorways.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby BDK » Wed Jan 11, 2017 4:10 pm

A) Old bowling alley is a good rigid surface for workbench.

B ) at least for a weightlifting platform, put on three layers of 1 inch plywood alternating the grain direction between layers, and gluing and screwing them together.

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby randy » Wed Jan 11, 2017 6:20 pm

I lucked out when I built my workbench. The HQ building I worked in at the time was replacing all of the solid wood doors for the secure offices. My NCOIC and I snagged two of them on the way to the scrap dumpster and one of them is my bench top.

Been shipped all over the country and has supported reloading, gunsmithing/cleaning, electronics projects, model building and assorted odd jobs.

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Greg » Wed Jan 11, 2017 8:07 pm

BDK wrote:A) Old bowling alley is a good rigid surface for workbench.

B ) at least for a weightlifting platform, put on three layers of 1 inch plywood alternating the grain direction between layers, and gluing and screwing them together.


That might be a great deal cheaper than trying to get a large butcherblock work surface.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby BDK » Thu Jan 12, 2017 12:43 pm

No idea about machine use, but put it on top of 2x6's on 4" centers, and it won't wiggle when carrying/jumping/lifting large weights on it.

Bowling alley is, of course, quite cheap but harder to get on a regular basis.

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby BDK » Thu Jan 12, 2017 12:46 pm

I will say that my home platform, built by a childhood friend and carpenter, which was framed with 2x8's, and backed with 1" plywood sheet, felt more solid that the usual competition platforms which were just the glued and screwed plywood in a metal frame.

But, that might have been more about the wiggle inherent to the metal

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby HTRN » Fri Jan 13, 2017 5:43 am

Greg wrote:That might be a great deal cheaper than trying to get a large butcherblock work surface.

Ikea.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Greg » Fri Jan 13, 2017 6:10 am

HTRN wrote:
Greg wrote:That might be a great deal cheaper than trying to get a large butcherblock work surface.

Ikea.


That had not occurred to me. :)
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby HTRN » Sat Jan 14, 2017 5:46 am

Ikea sells butcher block counter tops relatively reasonably priced. Another option is Grizzly industrial, but that can run into some real money..
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Cobar » Sat Jan 14, 2017 9:29 pm

Bally Block "wood welded" tops are pretty fantastic. I have no clue on price though. We've got a few benches at work that have been there for years getting abused with that stuff for the top. Look ugly as sin now, but still solid as can be. Most of the new benches we've been building have UHMW surfaces. I kinda like it, I might end up with a new bench in the garage with it.

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Windy Wilson » Sun Feb 05, 2017 9:04 am

SoupOrMan, those are 4x4 posts as uprights for your bench? I am jealous and impressed. I have a huge workbench from my father, made some 80 years ago plus, but it does not seem so substantial. Be sure to show how you mount your presses to it when it comes time.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Feb 08, 2017 6:35 pm

Yep. 4x4s. I may not ever drop a small block V-8 on it, but I want something that will withstand that weight.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Mon Feb 27, 2017 6:50 pm

Press and vise are now mounted. The press is held in the front by two lag screws driven into through the plywood and into the side 2x4 and a regular bolt in back. Pictures to come.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Mar 01, 2017 6:06 am

buildabangworkshop1.jpg


Here it is in all its glory, with a coat of paint and mounted vise & press.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Mar 01, 2017 6:10 am

buildabangworkshop2.jpg


Part 2. Washers almost everywhere. The press is high up enough to where I need to use the old machine stand (where my press used to be) as a seat. The back bolt is drilled through the plywood, washered and double-nutted since I ran out of lock washers. The front two fasteners are lag screws through the plywood into the side 2x4.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Mar 01, 2017 6:11 am

buildabangworkshop3.jpg


The front side of the press. The lag screws go through two layers of plywood and then into the 2x4.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Mar 01, 2017 6:14 am

And for those truly interested, the vise is just a generic 4" I scrounged out of my late grandfather's workshop when my grandmother moved into her new apartment. It should do for any AR modifications I want to make to my rifles.
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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby Denis » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:07 am

Splendid, but your workshop is much too clean and tidy. I can actually see the floor (haven't seen mine in months...)!

Happy reloading and well wear.

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Re: Adding a reloading press to a new workbench

Postby SoupOrMan » Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:20 pm

I blame my dad, who finds every last speck of sawdust when we're cleaning up after a project. It's also in my basement. It used to seep groundwater during moderate rains until I got the sump system in, so I mop the floor regularly to keep mold and mildew down.

Since that photo was taken I've already started covering it with reloading materials. All that's left is to buy a turret and dies to start reloading 9mm for Dad, get an armorer's wrench and receiver blocks for AR projects and replace my now-low stock of Longshot.

Aaaaand maybe add a progressive press for higher-volume loading. Maybe.
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