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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: September 28, 2017, 8:40 am 
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Location: Carlsbad, California, USA
Personally, I'd go for the last one. Wood is more flexible in many ways, and you.u can attach to, or modify the table to suit the stage of your build.

In my case, I used building my table as a skill building exercise. I was doing my first big application of welding, and learning to cut and join tubular steel. I would not do such an elaborate table now. However, mine was designed so that: 1) I could build the chassis without having to relocate it on the table to do the rear section; and 2) strong enough that I can build the complete car (chassis, engine, rear axle, seats, etc.) in situ. Here's the 3D model of it with my 3D design of the chassis in place to test the layout.
Attachment:
File comment: Chassis + Table in 3D
Sm-Table-Frame+Plywood+Chassis.jpg
Sm-Table-Frame+Plywood+Chassis.jpg [ 64.48 KiB | Viewed 631 times ]


In practice, I found marking it up legibly, being able to cut access holes, and being able to attach temporary pieces or supports or structures was really more important. Such as below:
Attachment:
File comment: Layout lines and access holes
BR-Joint-2.jpg
BR-Joint-2.jpg [ 78.08 KiB | Viewed 631 times ]


I hope this helps with your decision making.

Cheers,

Post Script Edit:
I should have mentioned, two "nice to have" features are 1) leg levelers; and 2) castors. They are not a requirement. However, depending on your build space and other things, it's nice to be able to move the table with your build intact, and then re-level it somewhere else. It's just something to consider. There are some good examples in various build logs if you decide to go that way.

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Damn! That front slip angle is way too large and the Ackerman is just a muddle.

Build Log: viewtopic.php?f=35&t=5886


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PostPosted: September 29, 2017, 6:51 pm 
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Joined: July 4, 2006, 5:40 pm
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For a Locost build, anything more than MDF on a couple of sawhorses is overkill, IMO. You just don't need a table all that much, once the basic frame is tacked together. It's nice to be able to take the thing apart easily when you don't want it taking up space anymore. If you want something more permanent, then I agree with Lonnie, the last design seems most practical.


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PostPosted: September 30, 2017, 8:28 am 
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Joined: September 22, 2005, 8:12 am
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Location: 4AGE in S.E. Michigan
I agree with Nick. It always seems like you need more space to work in. So a table that can be dis-assemblied will definitely help. The other option is casters on the table, so you can roll the whole thing out of the garage, so you can cut up a 20' long tube. I used saw horses but, once I got about 50% of the build completed I mounted wheels on the table that put the frame about a foot off the ground. That save my back plus allowed me to move the chassis around to free up the work area. Dave W


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PostPosted: September 30, 2017, 4:43 pm 
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Location: Cave Creek, AZ
A lower shelf underneath is always helpful. Make the cross braces for the lower shelf strong enough and high enough off the ground so that you can get a pallet jack underneath to move everything around. Or put locking, adjustable swivel wheels on each corner. It's always nice to be able to move your project around and the ability to level out the top surface is a plus.

Tom

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PostPosted: October 1, 2017, 11:01 pm 
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Hmm. For me I think a table with some good rigidity is critical because as I build my frame I am constantly getting on and off the table to access parts. Having the table skinned with a sheet of 16ga steel is very helpful because it acts as a ground and a quick way to tack things down. I just finished building the front end of my frame tonight, and it was very helpful to be able to build a jig out of scrap end-cuts, tack to the table in an unused corner, and build the part. Then a few minutes later with the help of a grinder, it's all gone.

my table was built with two sheets of 3/4" MDF with metal studs glued and screwed. Laid out lengthwise and 5 rows of transverse members added after the first pic was taken. I then glued and bolted the legs to what would become the underside MDF, glued and screwed it down to the top half, and flipped it over with the help of a friend. Also added leveling feet, which was a must with my garage floor. Painted all sides of each pce of MDF to help seal it as well as make it easy to mark out the locations of the legs, studs etc.

Image

Image


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PostPosted: October 9, 2017, 8:52 am 
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Joined: August 27, 2017, 6:20 pm
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I've been thinking about the build table for mine. I have a buddy who has a chassis table, but he's using it for a customer car at the moment and it won't be available for a couple months. Has anybody found an old, preferably free pool table to use? One with a slate top. Those are surely strong enough and are adjustable to make them perfectly flat. I found a couple on craigslist here in the $2-300 range. I wonder if you could find a free one somebody just wants out of their garage.


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PostPosted: October 11, 2017, 1:48 am 
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Thank you for the suggestions,

ZiG...I have never heard of metal studs, is this something you can just buy at Home Depot or Lowes? Like the link below?
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Clark-Western-2-1-2-in-x-10-ft-25-Gauge-Galvanized-Steel-Drywall-Track-45226151000000/100321197?MERCH=REC-_-PIPHorizontal1_rr-_-100319022-_-100321197-_-N

It sounds like there are two camps of thought. One makes a cheap build table with sawhorses and MDF board. I get it that makes sense, this form is locost not highcost right. :D

Camp two is a sturdy table maybe welded with casters and leveling feet.

I'm really leaning to the cheap table with sawhorses and MDF Board. My thought is if the table is too nice the frame will spend to much time on it, I'll let it sit on the table too long and not on the ground.

But I did redesign the table with leveling casters and C channel. (This would give me welding practice.) It still has the cool space under the table to hold tools and what not and holes for clapping down the frame for welding. This would cost much much more and take more time to procure all the parts and weld them together. The darn casters are 30 bucks each.

Enough talk here are the pictures....


Attachments:
Paulk-ish Workbench 10' 2.JPG
Paulk-ish Workbench 10' 2.JPG [ 292.54 KiB | Viewed 430 times ]
24125T230_LEVELING SWIVEL CASTER.JPG
24125T230_LEVELING SWIVEL CASTER.JPG [ 136.88 KiB | Viewed 430 times ]
Paulk-ish Workbench 10'.JPG
Paulk-ish Workbench 10'.JPG [ 157.25 KiB | Viewed 430 times ]
Paulk-ish 10' table with C Channel Frame.JPG
Paulk-ish 10' table with C Channel Frame.JPG [ 292.38 KiB | Viewed 430 times ]
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PostPosted: October 12, 2017, 9:37 am 
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Trackslut wrote:

ZiG...I have never heard of metal studs, is this something you can just buy at Home Depot or Lowes? Like the link below?
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Clark-Western-2-1-2-in-x-10-ft-25-Gauge-Galvanized-Steel-Drywall-Track-45226151000000/100321197?MERCH=REC-_-PIPHorizontal1_rr-_-100319022-_-100321197-_-N




Yup, that's it exactly. Very common in commercial buildings because they are light, go up quickly, and fireproof. I choose them over wood because they are perfectly straight and I didn't want a warped 2x4 causing my table to twist.

To your point about the two camps... Mine cost $300 CAD and took a day to build.


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PostPosted: October 13, 2017, 8:26 am 
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Location: 4AGE in S.E. Michigan
Just to be clear. One should not just use the MFD board with out any reinforcement for your build table. You need 2x4's, either steel or wood under structure to prevent the board from bending while clamping down the frame. Another option is white Melamine panel. It will cost about $10 more then MFD, but will make it easier to drawn [and see] your layout patterns on the white surface. DaveW


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PostPosted: October 13, 2017, 11:05 am 
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I for one, think the table as drawn will be very stable. :cheers: I assume that you have access to an NC router to make these pieces?

The drawing has been reduced so much it is hard to see clearly. I have a few comments. 1) the inner 2 ft sections should be supported by the ribs. It appears that the ribs are located below the adjacent 4 ft sections. Maybe double up the ribs where those joints occur or place a 3" wide splice below the surface joints bridging the joint? 2) If it were me, I would stagger those joints of the upper and lower surfaces so that they don't occur at the same place. 3) increase the number of ribs to 16" min on center 4) the top surface should be very thick, maybe 3/4". The bottom surface could be thinner.

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PostPosted: October 14, 2017, 6:43 pm 
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Location: SW Wes Consin
This seems a never ending discussion so I'll throw this in. A real weld table (flat, stable) for some bits like suspension arms and a front cross member ala airframe fixer might be nice. Like these https://weldtables.com/collections/pro- ... table-kits Although a full chassis size might be a bit much.
I have tried out there product and you can build square and flat jigs with it.

I'm a little surprised so many people use those engine hoists. Just more junk to store for me. I built a sliding beam into my ceiling and use a chain hoist. Works great.


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PostPosted: October 15, 2017, 10:04 am 
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Joined: August 27, 2017, 6:20 pm
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vroom wrote:
This seems a never ending discussion so I'll throw this in. A real weld table (flat, stable) for some bits like suspension arms and a front cross member ala airframe fixer might be nice. Like these https://weldtables.com/collections/pro- ... table-kits Although a full chassis size might be a bit much.
I have tried out there product and you can build square and flat jigs with it.

I'm a little surprised so many people use those engine hoists. Just more junk to store for me. I built a sliding beam into my ceiling and use a chain hoist. Works great.


This table looks awesome for the price. Having a flat surface you can trust is a big help.


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