Whether you need a stable work surface at a jobsite or don’t have room for a permanent shop, a portable workbench is an invaluable partner when working on a project.
These nifty assistants are capable of handling weights up to 1,000 pounds, yet they’re light enough to carry from place to place. Portable workbenches serve as an extra set of hands, with clamping systems that hold lumber, metal pipes, and other materials firmly in place while you work. When the job is over, these workbenches fold flat for easy transport and storage.
When shopping for a portable workbench, remember these factors before making a final purchase. Keep reading to learn why these models are some of the best portable workbenches on the market.
- BEST OVERALL: WORX Pegasus Multi-Function Work Table and Sawhorse
- RUNNER-UP: BLACK+DECKER Workmate Portable Workbench
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: KETER Jobmade Portable Work Bench and Miter Saw Table
- BEST COMPACT: WORX WX066 Sidekick Portable Work Table
- BEST HEAVY DUTY: Keter Folding Table Work Bench
- BEST ADJUSTABLE: Keter Folding Compact Adjustable Workbench
- BEST WITH WHEELS: COSCO 66761DKG1E SmartFold Deluxe Portable Table
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Portable Workbench
A portable workbench should be lightweight and durable, and it should have the features and versatility to assist with a number of projects.
Size and Weight
When shopping for a portable workbench, size and weight are crucial. Most portable workbenches weigh less than 30 pounds, which is a manageable weight for one person. Some workbenches weigh as little as 15 pounds. Portable workbenches fold flat to between 4 and 7 inches thick to allow for easy transport and storage. When set up, most portable workbenches have worktops that are approximately 30 inches long by 24 inches wide and stand about 30 inches off the ground.
Portable workbenches should be sturdy enough to endure abuse but also light enough to transport. To achieve this balance, most workbenches are made of a combination of sturdy steel and lightweight plastic or wood. Most portable workbenches feature steel or aluminum legs that provide a sturdy support system with a benchtop of heavy-duty plastic resin or a lighter wood such as bamboo.
When working on a project, a wobbly surface just won’t do, so a portable workbench must be sturdy. Portable workbenches feature wide-set feet with steel or aluminum legs that help provide stability. Look for a portable workbench with feet coated in rubber or some other non-slip material to prevent the bench from sliding.
Most portable workbenches feature integrated clamping systems. While some portable models have entire benchtops that open to clamp large material, others integrate tracks into the worktop to incorporate holding clamps and large 2-inch bar clamps. These clamps are designed to secure large pieces of wood or metal, allowing the user to cut, sand, or fasten materials.
Many portable workbenches include special features to make life easier. For example, some workbenches are designed with molded handles to make transport easier; whereas, others may include measurement markings printed or molded onto the worktop surface. Still other models feature extra pockets and drawers for tool storage, while some even have integrated power strips.
Adjustability and Versatility
Portable workbenches are designed to meet a variety of demands. Some workbenches may double as workstations for miter saws, while others have the ability to change shape completely, allowing them to function as both a workbench and sawhorse.
Many workbenches allow users to change the worktop’s height by up to 4 inches, which is handy when using the workbench with a table saw or as a support for cutting longer material. Other styles allow users to change the angle of the workbench to use as a fence for cutting.
Our Top Picks
The following products feature rugged construction, excellent clamping features, and compact designs that make them easy to carry or store.
With its lightweight adjustability for different applications and sturdy build, the Pegasus from WORX is an excellent option for DIYers with space limitations or a pro working at a remote jobsite. This workbench, which is made of high-grade plastic with lockable legs, can support up to 300 pounds when in work table mode. A set of quick clamps and holding clamps that work with two T-strips integrated into the benchtop provide ample clamping power for large dimensional lumber.
True to its name, the Pegasus can fold its “wings” down, allowing it to morph into a sawhorse that can hold up to 1,000 pounds. The underside of this workbench features a small storage area for supplies or a power strip. When folded, this workbench measures just 5 inches thick, making it easy to throw into the back of a vehicle. And, at only 25 pounds, this portable workbench is easy to carry to the jobsite.
BLACK+DECKER’s Workmate has provided a mobile work surface for weekend warriors and pros alike since its debut in the 1970s. Much of its design remains the same still today. The Workmate retains its classic foldable metal frame and wide-set legs, which create a rock-solid base. The hardwood work surface doubles as a sizable and versatile vice capable of gripping large pieces. With its rotating pegs and dual handle controls, the vice can be angled to grip irregular-shaped objects.
The Workmate’s benchtop features two height positions to suit a variety of projects. Its sturdy heavy-gauge steel frame gives it a maximum capacity of 450 pounds, while rubber feet keep this workbench firmly in place. When the workday is over, this portable unit, which weighs 28 pounds, folds flat for easy transport.
The portable Jobmade workbench from KETER offers a sturdy, lightweight design at an affordable price. Boasting an integrated clamping system with four separate clamps, this portable workbench from KETER holds materials firmly in place, so you can cut, drill, hammer, or assemble projects. The workbench surface includes two metal rails that fit with 2-inch bar clamps, making it easy to clamp workpieces. Built-in leg stabilizers keep the table level and in place as you work.
This workbench uses durable resin construction for the worktop with sturdy aluminum legs, giving it a 1,000-pound capacity. Other features include a tool organizer. This lightweight table also has the ability to collapse into a briefcase shape complete with a handle.
This portable workbench from WORX weighs only 15 pounds, allowing users to carry it from workshop to yard for an outdoor project or throw it in the truck for a trip to the worksite.
A high-grade plastic benchtop holds up to abuse while keeping it lightweight. Steel metal legs with rubber feet provide a sturdy non-slip base that can hold up to 300 pounds. The benchtop features four pegs to allow for easy clamping and handy guides molded into the surface for taking measurements. True to its name, you can link two Sidekicks together to make a larger table or connect one to WORX’s larger Pegasus portable workbench.
For heavy-duty jobs, you need a workbench that can endure the rigors of a pro jobsite while still being lightweight enough to transport. This portable workbench from KETER weighs just 27 pounds, yet it boasts an impressive 1,000-pound weight capacity, making it an excellent option for professional jobsites.
This formidable workbench features heavy-duty resin construction and aluminum legs that provide plenty of strength. Two 12-inch clamps secure material to the workbench, which features an ample worktop of 33 inches by 22 inches. When the job is complete, it folds into a 4.5-inch-thick flat suitcase shape complete with an ergonomic handle for easy transport.
Adjust the height on this workbench from KETER to make it work for a variety of different projects. The legs feature three different height options. KETER’s workbenches have a reputation for durability and high weight capacity, and this model is no different. It features tough resin construction and strong aluminum legs, making it a stable bench. It can handle up to 700 pounds of weight.
For transport or storage, the workbench folds into a suitcase shape less than 5 inches thick. A large handle molded into the body and a weight less than 30 pounds make this workbench easy to carry from workshop to worksite. Additional features include two adjustable holding clamps that fit into tracks on the workbench surface.
The wheels on this COSCO SmartFold portable workbench have 5-inch rubber casters, allowing it to roll wherever it’s needed. It features heavy-duty construction with a heavy-gauge steel frame and thick hardwood worktop.
This sturdy construction gives it a capacity of 350 pounds. Once it’s in position, the casters lock to prevent the workbench from rolling. And, when it’s time to store it away, the bench folds in half while still supported by the casters, allowing users to roll it neatly into a corner of the workshop. However, its 85-pound weight means it’s not a suitable option for remote jobsites.
FAQs About Your New Portable Workbench
If you’re wondering which qualities to look for in a workbench, keep reading for some of the most frequently asked questions about the top portable workbenches.
Q. What makes a good portable workbench?
A quality portable workbench should be durable enough to handle the rigors of a home workshop or pro jobsite. It should have a sturdy base that prevents it from wobbling while you work. It should include clamping features to hold materials securely in place. A portable workbench also should break down in seconds into a shape that’s compact and light enough for one person to manage.
Q. What’s the optimal height for a workbench?
Unlike dining room tables or kitchen counters, no standard workbench height exists. Workbench heights can range from 28 inches to 38 inches. Workbench heights on the high end are suitable for assembling items and to function as outfeed tables for table saws, while lower workbench heights allow for more leverage for such jobs as sanding. If you’re not sure which height you need, use this literal rule of thumb—the benchtop should meet the same level as the knuckle in your thumb when standing with your arms hanging at your sides.
Q. How much weight can a portable workbench handle?
The weight capacity of workbenches vary. Lighter duty workbenches can handle a weight of around 250 pounds, which is adequate for most home workshops, while a heavy-duty workbench may have a weight capacity as high as 1,000 pounds.
Q. How long does a portable workbench last?
Most portable workbenches use plastic in their design. While this makes them much lighter than a permanent workbench, plastic isn’t as durable as wood or steel. Plus, portable workbenches have moveable joints that allow them to collapse, making them weaker than a standard workbench with no moving parts. With that in mind, most portable workbenches should last many years when properly maintained.