Beginner Farm Table (2 Tools + $50 Lumber)
by wood work | Jun 25, 2018 | General
I have been a long time user and fan of Rustoleum products. This post is sponsored by Rustoleum by all opinions expressed are my own.
UPDATE: Bench plans have been posted here.
UPDATE 2: We added a tinted poly coat to the table and it now looks like this!
I’ve been wanting to get the beginner crowd a VERY simple, inexpensive farm table plan for years now. Just because you aren’t an expert woodworker with a zillion tools doesn’t mean you can’t still start somewhere, right?
Well, I finally got my chance!
We are moving into the new house, but with so many, many functional projects to tackle (like closets and pantry cabinets), a beautiful dining table is way down on the priority list. But still, I insisited we need a dining table to move in. Once you give in to the kids eating on the couch, you’re done … or at the very least have to be the bad guy and retrain the family.
So I gave myself three criteria for a new somewhat temporary dining table –
- Must cost less than $50 in lumber
- Must be done in an afternoon
- Can only use 2 tools – a drill and a saw (since most beginners don’t have a Kreg Jig yet – and I do stress yet)
This is what I came up with –
And here’s how it went down –
I purchased 6 – 2x4s and 6 – 2x6s in stud length.
The 2x6s are for the tabletop boards, and since they are all precut exactly the same at stud length, I set them aside – no cutting required. My table will be 92-5/8″ (standard stud length) long.
There’s only 12 cuts on the entire table, and it’s all the 2x4s.
I used a compound miter saw. You can use a circular saw or jigsaw, but do make sure your cuts are very good and straight.
Cutting done, time to build!
For attaching, I’m using 2-3/4″ self tapping screws. You’ll need about 100. Bonus – these are exterior screws, so I could use my table outdoors too.
Alrighty … let’s build already!
I used scrap pieces of 1x boards to elevate the horizontal boards on the legs. Then I just screwed from the outside.
Two leg sets done!
Then I flipped everything over and added the side aprons. One trick is I will screw at an angle (kinda like a pocket hole screw) in opposite directions, so if the table is wobbled at all, the screws dig in from opposite directions.
Then I flipped everything back over and checked for square.
Way out – like over an inch.
So I pushed the two shorter diagonal corners together until the two diagonals matched.
Then I added the bottom stretcher. The ends overhang 3/4″ – be careful that your legs are square when you add the stretcher.
The middle support piece keeps the aprons from spreading, and also give you something to attach the tabletop boards too.
Now for the top – I like to start in the middle and work outward. So I find the middle on both ends,
And then I attached the 2×6 studs to the top with screws. I am careful about screw placement so it looks good in the end.
NOTE: Since we aren’t joining tabletop boards together edge to edge, there may be a small gap between boards. You can fill with silicone after final finish, or use a Kreg Jig to build your tabletop first, then attach.
I was going for a rustic real wood look, but decided to sand to take splinters and rough patches out. I started with an 80 grit and finished with a 120 grit.
Table is ready for a finish!
I love Watco Danish Oil because it is a beautiful, durable finish that is easy to apply – so much I wrote an entire post about it!
Danish Oil is a color and finish in one, so all you need is one coat! You can go back and further seal the table (or just the tabletop) if you so desire.
Gotta say, I do love how this one turned out!
You can also watch the video tutorial here –
If you likey, do let me know, and I’ll get you those bench plans too! UPDATE: Bench plans have been posted here.
The plans follow, if you do build, please share, it’s a great joy seeing your projects too.
Have a good one!