The live edge larch bench I’ve been working on for the past few weeks is nearly complete. Just need to wedge and trim the tenons that are currently visible poking through the seat. Then it will be time to wax and send it on its way…
This bench is a commission based on a live edge oak bench that I completed earlier in the year which has proved pretty popular (I have another oak one underway too). The larch bench is a fair bit bigger at 1500mm long and 360mm wide which required a few design modifications and new techniques beyond just upscaling the timber sizes.
At 360mm wide, the double live edge board used for the seat is too wide to pass through the planer. I’ve therefore built a workbench long enough and crucially, flat enough, to use with a router sled. This al fresco bench, improvised from a few fence posts and a skip salvaged worktop, forms a flat reference plane. A plywood sled, containing the router, is then passed back and forth (94 times with a 16mm router bit) to create a perfectly flat slab and a lot of sawdust.
The diagonal stays linking the long stretcher to the underside of the seat are the main design modification. These add stiffness and stability to the longer span without compromising the delicate appearance of the bench.