At an almost unheard-of 94” in length, the Sjobergs Elite 2500 is the perfect Nordic antidote to your largest, most unwieldy projects. The generously proportioned bench- top (24” wide for a total working area of almost 16 square feet) is thick, solid European beech. It’s treated with a premium quality oil that, much like another oil I know of, promises to keep it looking young and beautiful. The model 2000 has a smaller top, measuring 71” x 24”, but ifs built with the same material at the same thickness (3½” at the center, 4¼” along the outside). These tops are sure to withstand any load — any load a team of strong men can lift up onto it, anyway — without bending or sagging. The two Elite cousins share a number of other features, including their heavy-duty solid beech trestle which gains extra strength from its mortise-and- tenon construction. The bases of both workbenches accept the SMO4 storage module, comprised of two three-drawer sections and a wide two-door cupboard. Its complete measurements are 54Yio” long x 18½” deep x 16- ¼” high; it’s a practical addition of storage space and a highly recommended option if you’re considering this “Cadillac of workbenches:’
Let’s talk vises. First, the creative minority (that’s you, left-handers) has no need to fear; both the side and the front vises can be mounted for either orien-tation with remarkable ease, in less than two minutes. The vises are as monstrously proportioned as the 2500 itself; they provide enormous clamping power across their 24” widths. With the introduction of these larger vises, Sjobergs has implemented a new hardware design that minimizes racking. The vises run on hardened steel spindles that are precisely machined for smooth, quick and accurate use. The vises can open to 5¾. Optional rubber jaw protectors are available for working with delicate pieces or softer woods.
Large panels and irregular work- pieces are accommo-dated nicely by the Elite series. Included are four unbreakable, plastic-coated steel bench dogs which protect your project material and sharp tool edges. Use them in any of the 40 benchtop dog holes, including two in each vise, on the 2500 (the 2000 sports 32) for a large number of efficient clamping options.
You can also use the bench dogs in the trestle for extra support when clamping a workpiece vertically. Sjobergs also upgraded its holdfast for faster clamping using any of the dog holes in the table- top or trestle legs Other accessories available for the Elite series include a metal-working anvil and aluminum bench dogs (or additional plastic- coated steel ones).
The bench is a knockdown design that is easy to assemble, and it comes with concise instructions. You can purchase the 2500 or the 2000 with or without the storage module, which weighs around 80 lbs.
With the module included, the total weights come to 390 lbs. for the 2500 and 350 lbs. for the 2000. As its name suggests, the Elite line is of very high quality and is an investment that will last for decades. The first decade is covered by a manufacturer’s warranty. Expect to invest around $1,700 for the 2500 ($2,200 with storage module) and $l,500/$2,000 for the 2000. For more information, visit the Sjobergs website at sjobergs.se.