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Rockler Bench Cookies – Part Deux
Yes, they have done it again!
Text and photos by Tom Hintz
Posted – 9-22-2010
When Rockler first dropped their original Bench Cookies into the woodworking marketplace lots of folks (me included) thought that they were simply a nice marketing tool designed to get the Rockler name out – like woodworkers might not already know who they are! Then behind closed shop doors some of us secretly tried using the original Bench Cookies and discovered that they really worked! Even more amazing is that we quickly began finding more and more uses for the Bench Cookies around the shop and even in the home. Apparently Rockler had also been contemplating the possibilities of those original Bench Cookies. The new Bench Cookies versions and related accessories shown in this review are the result. Remind me to never doubt Rockler again.
The new Rockler Bench Cookie Home and Bench Cookie Plus are obviously based on the originals but with added features that give them increased versatility. The same size, shape and materials appear to have made the transition to the new versions and that is good news because of the remarkable gripping power the rubber material gave the original Bench Cookies. Perhaps the biggest change is that now Rockler has a Bench Cookie version meant to come into the living space with you.
Bench Cookie Plus
The Bench Cookie Plus is very much like the original with the exception of a threaded boss in the bottom that accepts either of two new components. Both the Bench Cookie Risers and Bench Cookie Risers XL add height and/or stability for many in-shop uses.
The Bench Cookie Risers have 5/16” by 18 threaded studs in each end of a ¾”-diameter by 1-1/4”-long body. The Risers can be screwed into one Bench Cookie Plus and the riser body inserted into a common ¾”-diameter bench dog hole to lock the assembly place. You can also thread a Bench Cookie Plus on each end of the Risers to elevate a project piece on any flat surface for many common in-shop tasks.
With a Bench Cookie Plus on either end of the Risers the work is raised 3” above the surface. That can be very handy when using a jigsaw or other cutting tool that requires clearance below the work. If one Bench Cookie Plus is screwed on and the Riser placed in a dog hole the work is 1” above the bench surface. That clearance may be all you need for sanding, applying finishes or perhaps even some routing operations.
The Bench Cookie Risers XL also have a 5/16” by 18 threaded stud in each end and a ¾”-diameter body that also fits standard bench dog holes but body is 3-1/8”-long over all. The Risers XL also differ in that they have a flange located 1” from one end and 2” from the other. That lets you choose between a 1” of 2” work height by simply choosing which end of the riser to install the Bench Cookie Plus on. Also, with the 1” rise above the table the overall height matches the height of two stacked Bench Cookies. With the 2” rise above the surface the overall height equals 3 stacked bench Cookies. I am sure that users will find many ways to makes use of the Bench Cookie Riser XL uprights in their shops.
Bench Cookie Home
The Bench Cookie Home are just like the original Bench Cookies in terms of height, diameter and materials. However, the Bench Cookie Home have been given a gloss black finish that is far more neutral in any home setting. Rockler also moved the logo to a single inset disk in the middle of one gripping surface to help maintain the neutral impact with any home décor.
All this attention to how they look as part of a décor is because the Bench Cookie Home are meant for use in the home and not so much in the shop though nothing says you can’t use them in either or both environments. Whether used to elevate a cutting board or giving the underside of your laptop some breathing room the Bench Cookie Home look and work great.
Another use for the Bench Cookie Home is for putting a bit of breathing space between those expensive home entertainment components you have stacked up right now. A Bench Cookie Home at each corner could easily prevent heat-related (and super expensive) failures in those electronics!
The new array of Bench Cookies and accessories really do extend their usefulness in and out of the shop. With prices like $13.99 (9-22-2010) for a 4-pack of the Bench Cookie Home or Bench Cookie Plus you can make life easier in the shop or home or both. The Bench Cookie Risers cost $3.99 (package of 2) and the Bench Cookie Risers XL $7.99, (package of 4) giving you even more options without breaking the budget.
I thought about saying that Rockler had found all of the legitimate uses for their Bench Cookies but then remembered thinking that the first time around. I expect the R&D folks at Rockler are in their closely guarded laboratory right now gently pushing the edges of the bench Cookie envelope outward. I for one will be waiting to see what they come up with next.
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