Portable jeweler’s bench: A test run

by larryseiger on March 13, 2010

I finally had the opportunity to take my portable jewelers bench out for it’s first job.   Several weeks ago a client of mine who is a stone dealer called to ask if I could come over to visit with her and a customer who was flying in from NYC.  In addition to buying stones from my client, the customer was bringing in several rings that she had inherited from the 80’s.

Initially I was only going to look at the stones, work out some design possibilities and consult.  The meeting was canceled twice due to weather and in the interim my client asked if there was any way I could remove the stones from one of the rings that were in bezels.  My client was expecting a “no” but was wise enough to ask anyway.   As it turned out, this was an ideal situation to take my jeweler’s bench out for a test run.

When I designed the bench I made sure to measure the storage capacity of my Ford Focus wagon, but I hadn’t ever actually tried to get it in once it was finished.  Thankfully, it fit beautifully, just as planned.  The only problem involved the carpet in the rear of the vehicle which isn’t attached to the floor in any way.  When I slid the bench in, the carpet went with it and bunched up.  This kept the bench from fully entering the wagon.  I had to remove the bench and use a walking motion to get the bench fully into the vehicle without the carpet getting bunched up.  I’ll have to secure the carpet with some Velcro strips before the next outing.

The only other mishap came when I rolled the bench out of my clients garage and into the lobby where the elevator is located.  One of the wheels crashed into the rather tall threshold and cracked the wood that held one of the wheels in place.  Fortunately it didn’t hamper the benches performance until I got back to the shop.   If the bench tipped at all the wheel would fall out of place.  Fortunately I only had a few yards to traverse with the wheel in this condition.  The next version will include larger diameter wheels set farther apart and secured on a more substantial housing.

By the way, the meeting was incredible.  Both my client and her customer were completely impressed with the new bench and with my commitment to do the best work possible under the circumstances.  I brought along my Knew Concepts saw frame.  Even though they had no idea what a jeweler’s piercing saw was, they both mentioned how interesting the design was.  If I my client can translate half of the projects we discussed into sales I’ll be kept busy for quite a while!




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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Earl January 9, 2011 at 11:32 pm

I would like a copy of your portable work bench plan. I think it would work for my project on repairing pocket watch although I would have modify the plan with your permission to do so?

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