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Bathroom Vanity Turned Portable Workbench

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One of the coolest things about that gigantic barn that we have in our backyard is a room (that I believe used to be a milk room) that we have been using as our "workshop." I use this term loosely at this point, because there is still a TON of work to do before we get it to where we want it to be, but I finally got started on the process by creating a portable workbench (I do have video of this entire process on my Instagram account, which you can also watch here if you'd like). "Portable" was essential, because some of my project work inevitably gets done in our garage, and so being able to bring a work station back and forth from the house to the barn sounded necessary.

Building a workbench would definitely have been an option, but one day, as I was perusing Facebook Marketplace (as I tend to do), I came across a bathroom vanity that was for sale for only $100. I realized that I would spend WAY more than $100 in lumber to build something similar (not to mention the time I'd be saving by going this route), so I quickly scooped it up.

Since a key factor in creating a mobile workbench is ensuring that it is in fact mobile, the first thing I did was add some heavy duty caster wheels to the bottom of the vanity. Heavy duty screws (I ended up using #10s) are also important to make sure that the wheels don't fall off, which may or may not have happened to me the first time I attached the first wheel.

Once the wheels were on, I rolled that baby right down the driveway to the grass where I primed and painted it. I used Zinsser 1-2-3 spray primer, and then I used some SW Tricorn Black paint that I had on hand. Mine was leftover paint from a previous project, but I would normally recommend using paint specifically designed for cabinets/trim. I used my paint sprayer, and I have to say that I love this thing more every single time I use it. The finish is beautiful, and it gets the job done SO fast.

Another important element to this workbench was a platform in the middle of the bench to house my miter saw. I was able to use my circular saw to cut down the front of the vanity a bit in order to create a space that would ensure that the top of my saw would be level with a countertop. I created platform supports for the saw by screwing 2x4s into the front and back of the vanity (similar process to how supports are sometimes created for kitchen sinks). It is important to note that it took a little bit of testing out to determine the height of the supports. I wanted to make sure that the top of the saw was level with the top of the countertop, so some measuring (and trial and error) was necessary in order to provide the correct depth for the sunken saw. I had an extra shelf on hand from our kitchen island that was almost exactly the right size for the platform. I only had to cut down about an inch in order for it to fit perfectly. I secured the shelf to the 2x4 supports with screws, and the saw was ready to be dropped in.

I mentioned the countertop, and after weighing a couple of different options, I landed on using a butcher block countertop that I purchased. I am really happy with the decision - it looks awesome with the black paint! I used my table saw to cut the counter in half, and attached it to the workbench from the inside. There were already supports in place for this very purpose, so I just screwed through those and right into the butcher block. To cover the ugly back of this vanity that was once hidden against a wall in a bathroom somewhere, I used some leftover bead board and attached with finish nails. I thought this gave a really cute detail the back of the piece!

The last step was the details, so I added some gold hardware and a cute little "office" sign, and there you have it! Ready to roll for my next DIY! You guys know that I am all about sharing DIYs that are ACHIEVABLE, and I absolutely assure you that this project, or a form of it, is absolutely doable, even by the novice project-goer. You've just gotta try!!

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