Buyer’s Guide to Gunsmith Workbenches
You have decided to create a dedicated workstation for all your gunsmithing needs; to finally do away with the pain of propping your firearm on the dining room table only to search the opposite end of your home for the required tools.
Having a workbench is essential for keeping everything organized, easy to find, and avoiding contamination of toxic materials in areas like your kitchen counter. The process of choosing a dedicated workstation for all your gunsmithing needs can be slightly overwhelming.
Luckily this article is here to help lay a foundation of what to search for. In this article, you will read about examples of what workbench pairs best with each “style” of gunsmithing. I have broken each “style” into three categories.
Firearm cleaning focused. Simply stated, you plan to use your workbench primarily for cleaning, lubrication, and general maintenance of your firearm.
Ammunition reloading focused. As the name implies, you will be focused primarily on reloading ammunition on your workbench.
Gunsmithing focused. This is more or less a hybrid. It means you will primarily focus on the building and modification of firearms. Or your focus will be a combination of the three styles mentioned.
4 Things to Look for in a Gunsmithing Workbench
These four features take the cake when buying a suitable workbench for working on firearms.
Consider the functionality of a Gunsmith Bench before buying it. The functionality of any gunsmith bench is directly related to the specs. The more sophisticated the specs of each gunsmith workbench, the higher the functionality.
Quality of Material
The quality of the material is one of the most important things to consider when searching for a gunsmith bench. You do not want to cut corners in this area because it will come back to haunt you. Poorly constructed gunsmith workbenches will be out of spec and fall apart on you in less than a year.
Validated customer reviews are necessary, but they should be read with a grain of salt. Albeit they can still help give valuable feedback to the bench you are deciding on purchasing. Additionally, they help differentiate from inflated company reviews which are focused on selling their product.
If you are going to be tightening down castle nuts, striping receivers, and applying optics you will need a stable platform. The only thing worse than using your kitchen counter is using an unstable workbench that rocks back and forth.
Why Minimalism for a Gunsmithing Workbench?
Minimalism will help keep things streamlined and organized in the grand scheme of things when searching for a workbench. If you choose a workbench with over a dozen compartments, swinging cabinet doors, and roll-out shelving, expect to be in for a nightmare. More often than not, junk and items you will never use will begin to accumulate. Before you know it, you will end up spending 3o-minutes trying to figure out where you put that gun cleaner solvent you need. Additionally, adhering to a minimalist style when selecting a workbench will ensure you have what you need and nothing more or less when you get to the phase of personalizing your bench.
Does Name Brand Matter?
The quick answer, yes and no. A common misconception is that all gunsmith workbenches must have the most reputable company logo stamped on them in order for them to be deemed worthy.
“If the Armorers at Fort Bragg don’t use it or my favorite Youtuber doesn’t use it, it’s not reliable.”
This is simply not the case. Regardless of what company sells the workbench, chances are the materials were all sourced from the same distributor.
That being said, you want to make sure each gunsmith bench tabletop is constructed of solid wood. Stay away from the pressboard and sheet metal construction.
Furthermore, try to stick between 19 and 24 gauge steel when looking at the foundation construction. The higher the gauge number the thinner the steel; the more likely the frame will bend or wobble.
Finally, buying a “no-name” brand is not necessarily a bad thing. Just remember that it may not have enough customer testing to be deemed reliable and trustworthy.
Firearm Cleaning Focused Workbenches
Here are some top picks for gunsmith workbenches that are perfect for cleaning your guns.
If you are looking for a workbench to clean your firearms, you are in luck. The Gladiator hardwood adjustable workbench is just what you will need. The bench itself is as minimalist as you can get. The foundation has four sturdy legs with a cross beam between both pairs to ensure maximum stability. The top of the table is constructed of solid hardwood. This ensures your firearm’s finish will not get scuffed. Finally, the tabletop is large enough for small containers and organizers.
Specs and features
- Adjusts to meet ADA height requirements
- 3,000 pound max weight capacity
- 8′ wide x 27.5″–40.8″ high x 25″ deep
- 2 available colors
The Ultra HD lighted workbench with pegboard is another style of the gunsmith workbench that works great for organizing cleaning and lubrication supplies while giving you ample space to work on your firearm. This bench is built on a commercial steel frame to ensure stability. It has a granite powder-coat finish to prevent corrosion. Furthermore, it features a solid beechwood tabletop with a clear polyurethane coating. The polyurethane coating is an ideal addition to any gunsmith workbench due to its resistance to lubricants and cleaners. Finally, the Ultra HD lighted workbench features a steel pegboard (48″L x 24″W). You will be able to hang your tools and accessories on here to keep a sleek and organized look.
Specs and Features
- 6 outlet power-strip with 2 USB charging ports (UL & ETL certified – 125V, 15A) and 5.5 foot power cord
- 4 padded adjustable leveling feet
- Weight capacity (overall workbench): 500 lbs
- LED light fixture (cool white light, 12W, 1000 lumens, 4000K color temp, UL & Energy Star)
- Solid beech wood worktop (48″ L x 24″ W x 1.5″ thick) with clear triple polyurethane coating
- Bench weight: 113 lbs.
These workbenches are perfect for reloading ammo as well as other projects for gunsmiths and gun enthusiasts.
When it comes to reloading your ammunition you need as much space as possible. This 59 inch wood top workbench manufactured by Homak is the ideal set up you will want to look for when focusing on reloading your ammunition.
It weighs a hefty 182 pounds so you will not need to worry about it tipping over. The surface of the table provides more than enough space for your reloading press, powder scale, and so on. The attached pegboard will keep the clutter at bay by giving you the choice to hang most handheld tools by a hook.
Furthermore, the cabinets affixed to the top of the pegboard provide additional storage space. This is perfect for stashing your containers of empty brass casing, primers, and powder, and bullets. Some may argue that this steps out of the minimalist type set-up, I believe it provides just enough storage space for the additional tools and devices you will need when reloading.
Dimensions: 30.38 x 59.25 x 68.5
Our Top Workbench for Gunsmithing
This one is perfect for gunsmithing!
When it comes to gunsmithing a flat wide open work space is the most ideal. You are going to need room for a gunsmith vise, bench block, and everything in between. Therefore, the Workpro adjustable height solid wood workbench is a must.
The adjustable height provides the most flexibility. Whether you are short or tall and prefer to work seated or standing, this workbench will accommodate you. The solid wood table top allows you to bolt down the tools and devices that must remain in a fixed position while still having a large enough surface space to not clutter the workstation.
Furthermore, this bench is priced just under $300.00 for those who are budget minded and do not want to dish out close to a grand for a workbench.
Finally, the extremely large space underneath provides more than enough room to position cabinets and containers for additional storage.
Accessories for Your Gunsmithing Workbench
No gunsmith workbench is complete without a few tools of the trade. Here are some of the items in no particular order every person should own if they intend on purchasing or building a gunsmith workbench.
Weapon cleaning mat
A weapon mat will help contain gun oil and cleaner from spilling onto the workbench and damaging the wood finish. Most of these mats are machine washer safe as well. Here’s a link to some of our favorite gun cleaning mats.
An armorer’s wrench is a must have when working on your rifle. This tool will save you plenty of headaches and wasted hours rummaging through your tool box.
An armorer’s vise grip will keep your rifle in place when doing DIY modification and building.
Pistol Sight Alignment Tool
This tool is another must-have for those who regularly replace the iron sights on a pistol. For example, removing the infamous Glock stock sights and aligning aftermarket sights will become a breeze with this device. After familiarizing yourself with this device, aligning the iron sights will only take a few minutes and save you the trouble of paying a gunsmith.
We’ve identified what you should be looking for when buying a gunsmithing workbench as well as some of our top pics for the best gunsmith workbenches. Ultimately, the choice is yours and you should pick the workbench that is going to suit your specific gunsmithing needs as well as the space you have available.