Roubo sharpening bench – the not so grand finale


OK, I realise this will not be the most exciting post in the history of woodwork blogging, but seeing that my site is in the first place a way for me to document my journey for myself you will have to bear with me. This will however be the not so grand finale to a riveting series of posts on building a second Roubo-style bench. As per the title of these posts it will be used as a permanent sharpening station during it’s first life and hopefully become a workbench in a second life once my shop gets extended. I plan to add a holdfast type “twin screw vise” as a face vise at that stage.

As you can see in the pictures below I used Without (Cape Holly or Ilex mitis) for the shelve boards. They all received tong and groove treatment with my Lie-Nielsen no. 48 T&G plane.


As you can see here it is a beautiful wood species.


The shelve boards were nailed into position with finishing nails. I did not used to like the idea of using nails for proper woodworking, but Christopher Schwarz has convinced me that there is historical evidence for the use of nails for specific tasks. In this particular case I thought that the nails will allow the boards to move with the changes in ambient humidity and having such small heads make them almost invisible. As you can see, I left two gaps to allow for wood movement, which also doubles up as convenient slots to get rid of debris when cleaning the shelve.


In these pictures you can see my sharpening station taking shape. Now I can simply walk over and sharpen what ever needs a razor edge. Up until now, I always used to procrastinate for too long before sharpening, because it meant that I had to set up the station first, sharpen and then pack it away.


Thank you for joining me on this journey.

4 thoughts on “Roubo sharpening bench – the not so grand finale”

  1. I disagree, IT IS a grand finale my friend! A proper sharpening station is a great must have and you got yourself a fantastic one,
    take a bow 🙂

    You sure got some strange timbers out there, next time I go in the city, Ill see if I can get some of them at my local exotic wood supplier, they have about 60+ species, but I may find them under different names that you uses?

    Stay sharp.

    1. Hi Bob

      Thank you for the compliment. I am privileged with the different timbers in my collection, but what I struggle to get is the regular slightly softer(read workable), straight, a range of dimensions etc etc timber. My timber is wild with the grain often all over the place and I have to laminate to get to anything thicker than 35 mm.

      If you have any trouble finding these species, let me know and I will provide the botanical names, which should sort the name problem. I usually use the Afrikaans names (and try to include the botanical names)in my posts, but they often have more than one English, Afrikaans, Zulu, Xhosa etc etc names.

      Please stay in touch.

  2. Ok… A Gerhard Marx workbench unveiling with out a cocktail party? And a post with no ladies? What gives? Disappointed!

    Just kidding. The bench looks fantastic. Well done. I’m sure you will really appreciate having your sharpening station set-up all the time. This is a thing I have not been able to do for myself yet. Someday. I’m jealous.

    My regards to all,


    1. Hey Jonathan

      Thank you for the compliment. Has the chickens arrived yet? Please post some picture when they take possession of their new luxury apartment.

      Kind regards

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