Over at Rockler, they came out with a new super-sized version of their silicone project mat. The “project mat XL” is 23-1/2″ wide x 30-1/4″ long, which they say is ideal for standard-sized workbenches.
The mat is easy to clean, since wet glue rinses off and dried glue peels off.
It’s also soft, and textured on the top so that it can trap debris that could otherwise scratch or dent your project.
There is a non-textured zone that serves as a small screw or fastener trap.
Since silicone is also heat-resistant, you can use this when working with hot glue guns as well.
The XL project mats also feature interlocking ribs on the ends, face down on one size, and face up on the other. This means that you can create seamless connections for extending the protective matting across a larger work surface.
Lastly, it can also be used for other applications, not just glue-ups. Rockler adds that the mat also works great as a sanding pad, helping to protect your workpiece while also holding it in place.
And of course it could just be used as a reusable protective work mat, for the garage, workshop, or even the dining room table.
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Rockler’s smaller silicone project mat is normally $30, and is currently on sale for $20. It measures 15″ x 30″, which is a good size for smaller projects.
The new XL mat nearly covers the entire depth of a 24″ workbench, and the interlocking design means you can cover as long of a workbench top as you need to, and without gaps or seams.
While there are some Rockler-designed products that don’t appeal to me, such as their pricey drawer organization system, the silicone mat works great, and their XL project mat looks to be a great idea. It seems to be reasonably priced, too.
P.S. Their silicone glueing accessories are also great. I bought several of these products, and they all work great!