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How to make a table

How to make a table

In this article I am going to How to make a table using an old office desk top as a table top, some old 2×4 planks, and just the minimum tools needed: a circular saw, a drill, a dowel guide, and then also a few more things that I need to put the pieces together.

These two glued pieces of wood are actually my guide for 90-degree cuts for the disk saw. And it’s just a square and I need to line up the end of this with where the cut needs to go. And it’s just held in place with a clamp, and this guides the saw. I’m going to cut the legs at a slight angle towards the ground to give them a slightly more elegant appearance.

So, I want the base of the legs to be about 5 centimeters wide. And the oblique cut is not going to reach the top since I want the legs to remain rectangular at the top.

How to make a table

using an old office desk top as a table top, some old 2×4 planks, and just the minimum tools needed: a circular saw, a drill, a dowel guide, and then also a few more things that I need to put the pieces together.

These two glued pieces of wood are actually my guide for 90-degree cuts for the disk saw. And it’s just a square and I need to line up the end of this with where the cut needs to go. And it’s just held in place with a clamp, and this guides the saw. I’m going to cut the legs at a slight angle towards the ground to give them a slightly more elegant appearance.

So, I want the base of the legs to be about 5 centimeters wide. And the oblique cut is not going to reach the top since I want the legs to remain rectangular at the top.

How to make a table

And I’m just going to use this other leg as a straight edge. So the circular saw leaves a bit of a rough surface, so I’m just going to use the hand plane to smooth it out. Now I have some somewhat sharp edges, so I’m going to bevel them.

And they will go together this way and also like this. And this will form a tip of the table. To make a very stiff joint I’m going to dowel this together like this using this dowel guide. This doweling guide has different size holes for different size drill bits. But there is only one hole for the 1/2″, which is the size of the dowel I am going to use.

And I’m going to put several dowels here, so I have to be very careful how I position this guide so that the holes for the dowels line up later. And the drill has a bit that’s much longer than I need for these holes, so I made this sleeve to put over the bit and that will control exactly how far I’ll go when I drill.

Measurements

It would be easier to turn the guide 180 degrees to make this last hole, but I want to measure everything to this edge to make sure all my measurements are consistent. So now I need to drill some holes to put dowels in here, and this guide doesn’t go far enough to cover that. Also I want the holes to one side.

So I’m going to take this guide and actually take it apart. So once this is all the way open, this side jaw pretty much pops out, so we’re going to undo these screws here… and now if I turn this threaded sleeve.

I can pop this jaw out. And now, if I put this here it can be a guide, but it’s a little loose, since I can’t tighten this on both sides. So I made a spacer that goes in here and now if I hold it tight.

This leads to a fairly rigid joint between this part and this part.

And now to fix this in place I’m just going to hold it down with a sergeant. So putting these two pieces together these dowel holes line up pretty good, so I’m sure this joint will fit.

Very important

The leg that forms the frame with this other one is a mirror image of this one, or they will not fit perfectly at all.

Which means I have to work from the other side, and just like I had my dowel guide before, this just doesn’t work here and by the last hole it will be pretty much off this leg.

And the tricky part is that I also have to measure this differently, but I found that the first hole has to go where the guide is at 42 millimeters like this.

So, these joints already come together well like this so even without clamps they’ll be fine, but since I have clamps and to make sure I’m going to put this here while the glue dries. So this pair of legs is going to be attached to this stringer here.

And I want to cut a rabbet here to fit both pieces like this. And I’m going to use my circular saw, so I cut it with my square guide set here. So with the rabbets cut into the stringers, this goes here. I’m not going to glue these parts together, as I want to be able to take them apart again. So I’m just going to screw them on.

And I’m going to put screws here and here, and that should hold them down pretty tight. So this now goes here, with the holes pre-drilled. And I’m going to hold this in place with a sergeant. So I need to attach the top board somehow, and pocket holes would probably be the best way, but I don’t have a guide for drilling pocket holes.

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