If you haven’t seen it yet, you should check out the Lost Art Press teaser on Roman Workbenches. There is something about the bench depicted in the plate that makes sense to me. At the height of a normal workbench, I bet it would be fantastic for a small-space woodworker and pull excellent double duty as workbench and stout kitchen table. To that end, I have decided to forego the long stretchers and shelf on my Roubo-style workbench.
Here is my thinking: the benchtop is just over 4″ thick, and the tenons are at least 4″ wide and 1 1/4″ thick, so the joinery is plenty beefy. Instead of long stretchers and a shelf, I will build a low, rolling cart to keep under the bench. When in use, I can wheel out the rolling cart (for access to my tool chest and other essentials), and when I’m done, it tucks away neatly. This will free up the corner where my tool chest currently resides and, eventually, I can revisit the floor chest idea.
The bench will still have short stretchers, although I might use lapped joinery temporarily (rather than mortise and tenon) until I determine if the bench can live without long stretchers.
Make sense? Or am I just being lazy?