How to make a D.I.Y. wooden dining table

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How to make a D.I.Y. wooden dining table

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Project Overview

Using reclaimed timber to make a dining table ensures you have a unique piece of furniture and a conversation starter at home. This six-seat dining table has a rustic charm and style that you’ll love. With some reclaimed timber, a few simple tools and some materials, you’ll be surprised how easy it is to make.

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How to sharpen a chisel

There’s nothing worse than working with a blunt or chipped chisel. Here’s a quick and easy tip to keep it sharp and chip free. Apply some lubricant to an oil stone and start grinding off the blunt or chipped edge of the chisel at a 30-degree angle. Apply pressure evenly, running it over the entire stone. Keep doing this until your chisel has been fully sharpened.

Step by Step Instructions

1 Pre-cut your timber to size
2 Cut the reclaimed timber to square
3 Glue and clamp the timber
4 Cut the table ends square
5 Sand the tabletop
6 Wax the table
7 Sand the legs
8 Make the legs
9 Sand the legs
10 Stain the legs
11 Mark the legs position
12 Pre-drill for the legs
13 Insert the bolts
14 Secure the legs
15 Job done
  • Step 1. Pre-cut your timber to size

    To make this project easier, you can get your table legs pre-cut to size at your local Bunnings. Cut the 90mm x 45mm hardwood pine to the following lengths: • 800mm x 2 • 710mm x 2 • 655mm x 4
  • Step 2. Cut the reclaimed timber to square

    When using reclaimed timber, you may need to remove any screws, nails and other fixings and hardware first. Then use a table saw to clean up the edges so they’re straight.
  • Step 3. Glue and clamp the timber

    Lay the timber on sash clamps, which will give you the width of your table. Apply wood glue along the edges of the timber and tighten the clamps to bind them. You need to leave the glue to dry and cure thoroughly. Once the glue is dry, remove the clamps and chisel off any excess glue.
  • Step 4. Cut the table ends square

    Measure and mark the tabletop to the length you want. Then square the ends using the circular saw. For an even cut, use a straight edge clamp to help with this.
  • Step 5. Sand the tabletop

    Smooth out the tabletop with a belt sander, starting with 36 grit sandpaper on the surface and edges of the table.
  • Step 6. Wax the table

    For a great finish, use a rag to apply wax to the tabletop. This will protect the surface and enhance the colour of the timber. The timber will soak up the wax, so put on as many coats as necessary for your desired finish.
  • Step 7. Sand the legs

    If you had the timber for your legs pre-cut to size, all you need to do is use the belt sander and 120 grit sandpaper to remove any rough edges and markings on the timber.
  • Step 8. Make the legs

    Layout the timber in a rectangular shape, so there’s an 800mm piece at the top, butt join a 655mm length of timber on each side, and then a 710mm length of timber at the bottom. Clamp the timber together. Drill a 5mm pilot hole and countersink. Then glue and screw into place with the 100mm bugle screws. Screw from the top of the 800mm into the 655mm lengths. Screw from the side of the 655mm lengths into the 710mm. Leave the glue to dry.
  • Step 9. Sand the legs

    To give the legs a great finish, again use the belt sander with 80 grit to remove any pencil marks you’ve made. Then use the orbital sander to remove the sharp edges on the legs for safety.
  • Step 10. Stain the legs

    Once the legs are assembled, give them a stain to enhance the natural grain of the timber. Use a rag to apply the stain but make sure you don’t apply it too thickly. When using stain always follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Work in a well-ventilated area and wear a respirator mask.
  • Step 11. Mark the legs position

    Measure and mark for the 100mm cup head bolts that will go in the tabletop. Make sure they are positioned so that the bolts aren’t near the tabletop joins or the screws near the ends.
  • Step 12. Pre-drill for the legs

    On the underside of the tabletop, pre-drill a 5mm pilot hole through the legs and into the table where your legs will go. Then finish pre-drilling the holes through the table. Flip the table over and use the 22mm spade bit to make an 8mm deep countersink hole for the cup head bolts. Lastly drill a larger 10mm clearance hole through the table and the legs to accommodate the bolts you’ll be using.
  • Step 13. Insert the bolts

    Flip the table, so that the top is facing onto your workbench. Sit the tabletop on some timber offcuts and slide the bolts through from the top.
  • Step 14. Secure the legs

    Slide the legs onto the bolts and secure with nuts. Tighten these with a ratchet and socket.
  • Step 15. Job done

    Your recycled dining table is finished and it looks great. Put it in position in your dining room and you’ll enjoy it for years to come.

Tools and Materials

Tools

  • Belt sander
  • Chisel
  • Circular saw
  • Clamps
  • Cordless drill
  • 5mm and 10mm drill bit
  • Bugle bolt drill bit
  • 22mm spade bit
  • Countersink bit
  • Dust mask
  • Earmuffs
  • Hammer
  • Orbital sander
  • Paint brushes
  • Putty knife
  • Safety glasses
  • Sanding block
  • Sash clamps
  • Socket and ratchet set
  • Table saw
  • Wooden plane
  • Work gloves

Materials

  • 1m x 2m x 45mm timber x 3
  • 90mm x 45mm x 3.6m hardwood pine x 2
  • 100mm bugle screws
  • 100mm cup head bolts
  • Drop sheet
  • Natural wax
  • Putty
  • Soft cloths to apply wax
  • 240, 120, 80 and 36 grit sanding belts
  • 120 grit sandpaper
  • Wood glue
  • Wood stain
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