The Ultimate Workbench Guide - Valheim

Your workbench is an essential piece of equipment in Valheim, and rightfully so, you literally need the workbench to build, improve and progress through the game, using the tools it provides. You use the workbench to upgrade and repair your tools and to build new tools. You need to upgrade your workbench as well.

There are a total of five levels for your Valheim workbench. When you craft and place the bench down, it will be at level 1 by default.

Building Workbench

Crafting the workbench is easy and requires you to have 10 Wood. You can get Wood from the trees or branches around you.

Chopping the trees is the easiest way to acquire wood
Wood after chopping down a tree

You need a simple building or a structure with a roof covering the workbench for you to be able to use it. You can do this by building a wall around the workbench, and a 45-degree angle thatched roof over it (must be covering the workbench to access the crafting interface).

Workbench Level 1 - Interface

Workbench Upgrades

Upgrading the workbench is simple, but gathering the materials for it will take time as you will need to slowly progress through the game to fully upgrade it. To upgrade your workbench, you must place specific items near or in the vicinity of the workbench. These items are identified and distinguished through the build menu interface with a 'star' icon.

'Starred' icons in the 'Building' tab - The circled icon is the Chopping Block

When you place the required item next to the workbench, it emits a sparkling beam of light from the item to the workbench.

Sparkling light indicates that the item placed is affecting the workbench (upgrading it)

When you place the item and access the crafting menu via the workbench, you will notice that the level of the workbench will go up by 1.

The workbench upgraded from level 1 to level 2

The following are the upgrade requirements, recipes, and locations where you can find the items to craft the necessary items for the workbench upgrade.

Level 2 - Chopping Block

The Chopping Block upgrade your crafting table to level 2, and gives access to a range of new craftable items and equipment. To craft the Chopping Block, you need:

  • 10 Wood
  • 10 Flint
Chopping Block Recipe in the 'Building' Tab

Materials Locations

You can find the materials in the following locations:

  • Wood: Wood is easily available all around you in the form of trees and branches. You can use an axe to chop down a tree for a lot of wood or pick small branches laying on the ground.

    A pile of wood after chopping down a tree
  • Flint: You can find Flint near the water around the beaches of Valheim.

    Flint at the shore of one of the beaches located in the Meadows biome

You unlock the recipe for the Chopping Block once you pick up the Flint. It also unlocks the recipe for the Tanning Rack which is the next item used to upgrade the workbench to level 3.

Unlocking the recipe of Chopping Block and Tanning Rack

Level 3 - Tanning Rack

By placing the Tanning Rack near your workbench, the workbench will be upgraded to level 2. To craft a Tanning Rack, you need:

  • 10 Wood
  • 15 Flint
  • 20 Leather Scraps
  • 5 Deer Hide

Materials Locations

  • Wood: Wood, as mentioned before, can be obtained by either chopping down the trees or collecting the branches off the ground.
  • Flint: Flint as always can be collected at the shores of the biomes. Specifically, the Meadows biome.
  • Leather Scrap: Leather Scrap can be obtained in various ways. One of the most common and easiest method to get leather scrap is by killing the boars.
    A Wild Boar as seen in Valheim

    Other sources include random loot chests in the Meadows biome and Muddy Scrap Piles in the Swamp biome dungeons.

  • Deer Hide: Deer hide is easily obtained by killing the deer that are in abundance all over the gigantic world of Valheim.
    A flock of Deer in the Meadows biome

    Deer Hide drop after killing a Deer

Level 4 - Adze

Now, we're getting into the tougher and complicated sides of things. To upgrade your workbench to level 4 you need to place an Adze near your workbench. To craft an Adze, you need:

  • 10 Fine Wood
  • 3 Bronze

To name the ingredients is easy, but it is easier said than done. Let's take a look at all the steps you need to take in order to upgrade your workbench to level 4.

Materials Locations

The following steps are all part of a process to get to the final materials/ingredients to build the Adze. So, we have listed down a complete step-by-step process to get your Fine Wood and Bronze.

The very first thing you need to do is to defeat the first boss called 'Eikthyr' in the Meadows biome. You can use the area of the sacrificial stone to register the location of the boss and it will be marked on your map. When you go to the marked location, you will be asked to offer some items that will be used to spawn the boss. Each boss has a different requirement.

Eikthyr Spawning Animation after the offering

To spawn Eikthyr, you need to offer two Deer Trophies which are obtained by killing the Deers. Once you offer them at the altar, Eikthyr will spawn.

Eikthyr Boss Fight in progress

Kill him, and you will be rewarded with 'Hard Antlers'

Hard Antlers earned after killing Eikthyr

Once you've got the Hard Antlers, make your way back to your workbench and use 10 Wood and 1 Hard Antler to craft an Antler Pickaxe.

Crafting an Antler Pickaxe at the Workbench

Then make your way to the Black Forest biome and look for Copper and Tin deposits to mine them using the Antler Pickaxe. The Copper deposits have slight brownish lines on the rock surface as seen in the image below.

Copper Deposit found in the Black Forest biome

When you mine the deposit, you will get Copper Ores.

Copper Ores dropped after mining the copper deposit

Next, look for Tin deposits that are found near the shores of Black Forest around the beach. They have a black line going across the surface of the rock.

Tin Deposit found by the beach in the Black Forest biome

The same goes for the Tin Deposit as well. When you mine it, you will get the Tin Ores.

Tin Ores after mining the Tin deposit

Now, we need to convert these ores into refined Copper and Tin ingots to produce Bronze. Bronze in this game is an alloy of Copper and Tin ingot. So, to begin, build a Charcoal Kiln from the 'Crafting' menu by using your hammer tool. You will need 20 Stones and 5 Surtling Cores for the Charcoal Kiln. If you haven't already, visit one of the dungeons in the Black Forest to find the Surtling Core.

Charcoal Kiln - You can add any type of wood to convert it into Coal

You need the Charcoal Kiln to produce Coal for the Smelter.

Coal produced after converting Wood using the Charcoal Kiln

Now that you've got the coal, your next step is to build a Smelter. A Smelter is used to smelt the Copper and Tin Ores into refined ingots of the same. The Smelter also requires 20 Stones and 5 Surtling Core. You can find it under the 'Crafting' tab of your hammer tool.


You can add Coal to the right side of the Smelter fuel.

You can add Coal once you collect it from the Charcoal Kiln

And on the left side of the Smelter, you will have the option to add the materials that you want to Smelt. In our case, it would be the Copper and Tin Ores.

You can add the materials into the Smelter from the left side

The Smelter can hold up to 20 Coal and uses 1 Coal every 15-16 seconds as fuel. It takes around 30 seconds for the Smelter to produce one bar of metal and it can hold up to 10 ores at a time for smelting.

Copper bar produced after smelting Copper Ore

Once you pick up the Copper Bar, you will get a notification showing you that a range of new recipes has unlocked including a Forge. Forge is important moving forward if you want to upgrade your workbench to the maximum possible level.

Forge build recipe unlocked

You need to build the Forge to unlock the Bronze recipe and Tin recipe for the Smelter. The Forge will cost you 4 Stones, 4 Coal, 10 Wood, and 6 Copper to build.

Building the Forge

Once built, you will get another prompt that notifies you that more recipes have unlocked including Bronze and Tin.

Bronze and Tin recipes unlocked

The first thing you need to do now is to use the Forge to craft Bronze. You need 2 Copper and 1 Tin to craft 1 Bronze ingot. When you craft your first Bronze, you will get a range of new recipes including new Bronze tools.

Crafting Bronze using the Forge

Next, you must build a Bronze Axe otherwise, you won't be able to upgrade your workbench. Bronze Axe will require 4 Wood, 8 Bronze, and 2 Leather Scraps.

Crafting the Bronze Axe at the Forge

The reason you need the Bronze Axe is to chop down a Birch tree that cannot be chopped using a regular Stone Axe. You need Fine Wood which can only be obtained by cutting down a Birch tree.

A Birch tree in the Meadows biome
Fine Wood drops after cutting the Birch tree using the Bronze Axe

When you pick up the Fine Wood for the first time, you will unlock the recipe for the Adze, the item we need to upgrade our workbench to level 4 (yes, finally!).

Various recipes unlocked unlocked Adze's

Now, you're ready to upgrade your workbench to level 4. To build the Adze, you need 10 Fine Wood and 3 Bronze. Make sure the Forge is nearby when building the Adze or else you won't be able to build it.

Building the Adze

Once you build it, you will get a prompt that the workbench has been upgraded to level 4.

Workbench upgraded to level 4

Level 5 - Tool Shelf

The final piece you need is the Tool Shelf to fully upgrade your workbench which is level 5. To build the Tool Shelf, you need:

  • 4 Iron
  • 1 Fine Wood
  • 4 Obsidian

The iron tools are considered to be "mid-game" tools. To get access to the Iron tools, you must defeat the second boss called 'The Elder' found in the Black Forest.

Materials Locations

The Elder is summoned by offering 3 Ancient Seeds. You can get Ancient Seeds by killing either the Greydwarf Shaman or Greydwarf Brute.

Greydwarf Shaman found in the Black Forest biome

It is also a guaranteed drop if you destroy a Greydwarf nest.

Greydward Nest in the Black Forest biome
Ancient Seed drop after destroying the Greydwarf Nest

You need 3 Ancient Seeds to be offered at the sacrificial altar to summon The Elder boss.

Offering 3 Ancient Seeds
The Elder Spawns

You need to defeat the Elder to acquire a Swamp Key.

The Elder in all its glory
The Elder drops the Swamp Key when you kill him

After getting the Swamp Key, find a Swamp biome. It looks like a dark brown colored patch on the map.

Swamp Biome (Dark Red Color)
Swamp Biome

Before going to the Swamp Biome, it would be best to gear up using Bronze to fully armor up and have a Bronze sword as well since the enemies you encounter here are stronger than your usual Greydwarfs. You need to look for a secret dungeon in the Swamp Biome and use your Swamp Key to unlock it.

Dungeon in the Swamp biome
Unlocking the dungeon door using the Swamp Key

You will find Muddy Scrap Piles inside the dungeon that can be mined using your Antler Pickaxe to acquire Scrap Iron.

Muddy Scrap Pile mined to acquire Scrap Iron

You can also find several chests inside the dungeon containing the Scrap Iron.

Chest containing the Scrap Iron inside the dungeon

Once you have the Scrap Iron, you can bring it back to the Smelter and smelt it into Iron ingots.

Iron after smelting Scrap Iron
Several Iron Recipes Unlocked

Now that you have the iron recipes unlocked, you need to craft an Iron Pickaxe. Iron Pickaxe is essential as you will use it to mine the Obsidian which is one of the materials needed for the Tool Shelf.

To craft an Iron Pickaxe, you need to upgrade your Forge to level 2. You can upgrade your Forge to level 2 by placing Anvils next to the Forge. It will have a similar sparkling light beaming towards the Forge from the Anvils. You need 5 Wood and 2 Bronze to build the Anvils.

Building the Anvils next to the Forge

You still won't have the recipe for the Iron Pickaxe. To unlock the recipe, you must first collect Core Wood by chopping down Pine tree at the Black Forest biome.

Pine Tree in the Black Forest biome
Core Wood dropped after chopping the pine tree

The first time you pick up the Core Wood, you will get a notification showing you that the recipe of the Iron Pickaxe is now unlocked.

Iron Pickaxe Recipe Unlocked

Head back to the Forge and craft your Iron Pickaxe. You will need 20 Iron Ingots and 3 Core Wood to craft an Iron Pickaxe.

Crafting an Iron Pickaxe

Once you have the Iron Pickaxe, make your way to one of the snowy Mountain biomes. You will find the Obsidian in these Mountains biomes.

Obsidian Deposit found at one of the Mountain biomes

You can use your Iron Pickaxe to mine the Obsidian. When you pick up the Obsidian, it will unlock new recipes including the recipe for the Tool Shelf which is what we need to upgrade our workbench to level 5.

New recipes unlocked including 'Tool Shelf' recipe

Finally, make your way back to the workbench and use your hammer to access the 'Crafting' tab to find the new Tool Shelf.

Tool Shelf under the 'Crafting' tab

It will go on the wall. So, place it on a wall near the workbench so it is in range and upgrades your workbench.

Placing the Tool Shelf on a wall next to the workbench

When you place the Tool Shelf, you will get a prompt that will notify you about the workbench upgrading to Level 5.

Workbench upgraded to level 5 - In-game notification

Now, you've completely upgraded your workbench to the maximum possible level available in the game. Note that more levels are expected to be added (the current date is 31st March 2021), and once they do, we will be sure to upgrade our guide accordingly. You will now notice that the sparkling beams of light are concentrated towards the single workbench from all the parts that you've placed nearby.

Sparkling beam of lights from all the placed equipment

You will now have access to a variety of items to craft from the workbench.

Workbench Recipes & Level Requirements


Hammer N/A x3 Wood
x2 Stone
Antler Pickaxe Level 1 x10 Wood
x1 Hard Antler
Hoe Level 1 x5 Wood
x2 Stone
Stone Axe N/A x5 Wood
x4 Stone
Abyssal Harpoon Level 2 x8 Fine Wood
x30 Chitin
x3 Leather Scraps


Rag Tunic Level 1 x5 Leather Scraps
Rag Pants Level 1 x5 Leather Scraps
Deer Hide Cape Level 2 x4 Deer Hide
x5 Bone Fragments
Leather Helmet Level 2 x6 Deer Hide
Leather Pants Level 2 x6 Deer Hide
Leather Tunic Level 2 x6 Deer Hide
Troll Hide Cape Level 3 x10 Troll Hide
x10 Bone Fragments
Troll Leather Helmet Level 3 x5 Troll Hide
x3 Bone Fragments
Troll Leather Pants Level 3 x5 Troll Hide
Troll Leather Tunic Level 3 x5 Troll Hide
Wolf Fur Cape Level 2 x6 Wolf Pelt
x4 Silver
x1 Wolf Trophy
Lox Cape Level 2 x6 Lox Pelt
x2 Silver
Linen Cape Level 2 x20 Linen Thread
x1 Silver


Club N/A x6 Wood
Flint Knife Level 1 x2 Wood
x4 Flint
x2 Leather Scraps
Flint Spear Level 1 x5 Wood
x10 Flint
x2 Leather Scraps
Crude Bow Level 1 x10 Wood
x8 Leather Scraps
Finewood Bow Level 1 x10 Fine Wood
x10 Core Wood
x2 Deer Hide
Abyssal Razor Level 2 x4 Fine Wood
x20 Chitin
x2 Leather Scraps
Stagebreaker Level 2 x20 Core Wood
x5 Deer Trophy
x2 Leather Scraps


Wood Shield Level 1 x10 Wood
x4 Resin
x4 Leather Scraps
Wood Tower Shield Level 1 x10 Wood
x4 Leather Scraps


Wood Arrow (20) Level 1 x8 Wood
Flinthead Arrow (20) Level 2 x8 Wood
x2 Flint
x2 Feathers
Fire Arrow (20) Level 2 x8 Wood
x8 Resin
x2 Feathers
Poison Arrow (20) Level 2 x8 Wood
x4 Obsidian
x2 Feathers
x2 Ooze
Obsidian Arrow (20) Level 3 x8 Wood
x4 Obsidian
x2 Feathers
Frost Arrow (20) Level 4 x8 Wood
x4 Obsidian
x2 Feathers
x1 Freeze Gland
Needle Arrow (20) Level 4 x4 Needle
x2 Feathers


Tankard Level 1 x5 Fine Wood
x2 Resin
Ooze Bomb Level 1 x5 Leather Scraps
x10 Ooze
x3 Resin
Torch N/A x1 Wood
x1 Resin

DLC Content

The following items are only available for the early supporters of the game via a steam code that was sent out to the individuals by the Iron Gate Studios (developers) to those who signed up for the Beta version of Valheim.

Cape of Odin Level 1 x10 Leather Scraps
x4 Coal
Hood of Odin Level 1 x10 Leather Scraps
x4 Coal
Mead Horn of Odin Level 1 x4 Fine Wood
x1 Deer Trophy
x2 Resin
Hassan Sajid

Gaming has been a part of Hassan’s life for as long as he can remember. Not only does he game well, but he also keeps his eyes open for gaming-related content to make in-depth guides and is always keen to share his game experiences. He graduated with a degree in engineering from the National University Science & Technology (formerly known as Caledonian College of Engineering). The research and technical writing skills he earned throughout his time in the university have allowed him to contribute to the gaming community by creating in-depth guides for gamers all over the world. Find Hassan on LinkedIn.
Keanu joins Martin Scorsese Hulu series Another trusted source just "confirmed" Electronic Arts' Iron Man game Eidos Montreal is working on a new IP next - not the next Deus Ex Wordle 415 for August 8: Hints and Answers Miley Cyrus arrives in Gucci Town DC Films 10 year plan and HBO Max restructuring Square Enix reportedly wants to sell stakes in remaining studios Hogwarts Legacy gets a massive new trailer ahead of holiday launch Battlefield 2042 players want to boycott EA following refund denial Blizzard confirms no more Overwatch 2 beta until October