Any of you that have been following me for a little bit probably already know that any clean horizontal surface doubles as a workbench for me.  It doesn’t matter if it’s the table saw, band saw, router table, or even a cardboard box.  If it is free of clutter and has enough area for me to get the job done, then it’s fair game.  That being said, certain tasks are messier than others and require for the surface to have some protection against glues, paints, and finishes.  For a long time I have used drop clothes, plastic sheets and scrap cardboard to protect underlying surfaces.  I may have even covered a few cardboard boxes with more cardboard but that’s not what I’m here to discuss.  When I was visiting my friend Jay, I noticed he had similar problems protecting his work surface.  So we built a kraft paper holder which you can see here.  I figured it was time my shop had one as well.  It’s a simple woodworking project with very few parts, but when it comes to making cleanup after a project go smoother, I’m all for it.  It can be adapted to just about any work surface, the kraft paper is rather inexpensive, and I made mine out of some scrap wood and a piece of dowel.  A win win win in my book.  Let me know if you have any questions or comments down below, enjoy!




I began by measuring the kraft paper roll.  I lucked out on this roll as it was exactly the width I needed.  You can cut it down on a miter saw or band saw but if you do, be careful.  Cylinders tend to want to rotate into blades and you have to make sure to secure the roll.


It doesn’t hurt to write down the measurements and draw a quick sketch for the end pieces to be cut.


I had some scrap plywood I was going to use for the end pieces.  I squared up the piece and made sure the edges were parallel.


I then ripped two pieces on my table saw.  In my case they were 4″ wide.


Then I used my table saw sled to cut the to a length of 5″.


I then drew a semi-circle with a compass to have a profile to better match the kraft paper roll.


I secured both pieces together using some carpet tape.  It is rather strong stuff, so sticking it to your shirt first helps knock down the tack making it easier to pull apart later.


Using a bandsaw, I could cut it to rough size, making sure to leave the pencil line.


A few quick passes on the belt sander finishes out the curve.


I had some 3/4″ dowel stock laying around so that is what I was going to use to hold the roll of paper in place.  So I used a 3/4″ forstner bit to bore completely through one piece and about half way through the second.


After separating the two pieces, I pre-drilled some holes for screws using a tapered counter sink bit.


Using that same bit, I drilled a hole in what would be the top of the end piece that had the through hole.  It was going to be for a screw to secure the dowel in place.

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All it took to secure the end brackets was a few #8 wood screws into the side of my assembly table.


I cut the dowel to final length on the table saw.

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On my belt sander I rounded the pointed tip of a wood screw.  This would be inserted into the hole I drilled earlier and hold the dowel in place.

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Once you slide the dowel in place through the paper roll you can secure it with that screw.

Kraft-Paper-Holder20Now you should be all set to glue up or finish a project without having to worry too much about protecting the surface underneath.  Once you’re done with the kraft paper you can either roll it back up or tear off the old piece and throw it away.

A kraft paper holder for your workbench or assembly table might not be the most complex thing you’ll ever tackle but chances are you won’t want to live without it after using it a few times.  Thanks for taking the time to check it out and let me know if you have any questions or comments below!

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8 Responses

  1. Dave Miller

    Looks like you’re good to go at the bench. Have you ever thought a similar holder for paper towels? I need one of those also.

    • Nick

      I still have plenty to add to it and paper towel holders never go well with me – always a full roll sitting next to the holder with an empty in it, lol

  2. Brian Lenhart

    Just bought a big roll of paper and was going to do something like this! Great video! In Green Bay for the game this weekend! Awesome city! Everyone has been great!

  3. Chris

    Did you pull off the pipe clamp vise Jay Bates put on that bench (or different bench)?
    Nice quick project.


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