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A completed outdoor pallet coffee table, complete with glassware, plate, oranges and a bottle of Pellegrino

Overview

We all love to recycle and this D.I.Y. project will show you how you can turn an old pallet into a rustic outdoor coffee table on wheels. It's easy to make, looks great and you can move it to wherever you want it.

Steps

1Cut your timber

To make this D.I.Y. project even easier you can have your timber pre-cut at your local Bunnings. Here's the cutting list we used for this project:

45mm x 90mm F17 Tasmanian oak for the outer frame:
- 850mm x 2
- 550mm x 2

70mm x 35mm treated pine for the inner frame:
- 755mm x 2

The tools and materials necessary for making an outdoor pallet coffee table on wheels

2Remove the timber from the pallet

Use the pry bar to lift the timber slats from the pallet.
Planks being removed from an old pallet with a pry bar

3Remove the nails from the pallet slats

Use the hammer to straighten up the nails as much as you can. Then bang the nails back through the pallet slats. Use the claw of the hammer to pull out the nails. Repeat this until all of the nails have been removed.
Nails being driven out of a length of wood salvaged from a pallet

4Make the first mitre cut for the frame

Set the mitre saw to 45-degrees. Make the first cut close to the end of the timber.
A piece of timber being cut at 45 degrees for a corner piece

5Measure and mark the length of the frame

Measure and mark to make the second cut, ours was 850mm long.
A tape measure and pencil being used to mark a length of wood

6Make the second mitre cut

Set the saw to the opposite 45-degree angle from the first cut. Cut the timber to length. Repeat the previous steps to cut the other 850mm length for the frame and the two 550mm sides for the frame.
A 45 degree mark being ruled onto a length of timber for a corner piece

7Cut the timber for the inner frame

Set the mitre saw to 90 degrees. Take both pieces of timber for the inner frame and cut them near the ends to 90 degrees.
Two lengths of timber being cut to size

8Measure and mark the inner frame

Measure and mark the treated pine for the inner frame. Ours were 755mm long.
Two wooden lengths being measured and marked for cutting to size

9Cut the inner frame

Set the saw to 90 degrees. Cut the timber for the inner frame to size.
Two lengths of timber being cut to size

10Assemble the frame

Apply glue to the ends of the timber for the external frame. Join them together, making sure the ends are flush. Use the fixing gun to secure them. Wipe away any excess glue.
A corner joint being secured with glue

11Attach the inner supports

Apply glue to one of the long thicker sides of the internal supports. Place them so they're flush with the bottom of the outer frame. Use the fixing gun to secure them.
Glue being applied to a length of wood in a zig zag pattern

12Measure and mark for the tabletop

Measure the distance between the outer frame, ours was 460mm. Transfer these measurements to the timber from the pallet.
A tape measure being used to measure the distance inside a wooden frame

13Cut the timber for the tabletop to size

Set the saw to 90 degrees. Cut all of the timber for the tabletop to size.
A length of timber being cut to size

14Secure the timber for the tabletop

Place the timber for the tabletop into the frame. Make sure it's evenly spaced. Use the fixing gun to secure it.
Planks being laid into a wooden frame

15Putty up the joints

Putty up the mitre joins. You can choose to leave the nail holes exposed for a rustic look, or putty them for a more finished look. Let the putty dry.
Putty being used to seal the joints in a pallet coffee table

16Sand the table

Once the putty is dry, start sanding. Start with the rougher 40 grit sandpaper and graduate to 120 then 240 as necessary. Depending on your taste, you can leave the pallet with a rustic look, or sand it back so the tabletop is flush with the outer frame.
The surface of a pallet coffee table being sanded down

17Mark for the caster wheels

Turn the tabletop over. Place a caster wheel in a corner so that it's flush. Mark for where the screws will go. Repeat this for the three other wheels.
The underside of a pallet coffee table being marked with a pencil to position castor wheels

18Attach the wheels

Pre-drill the holes for the wheels with the 3.5mm drill bit. Secure them with the 30mm screws.
A castor wheel being secured to the underside of a pallet coffee table

19Apply the stain to the table

Use a paint brush to apply the Cabot's exterior clear. When you do this, make sure you're working in a well ventilated area.
The surface of a pallet coffee table being varnished

20Enjoy your table

Once your table is dry, you're ready to enjoy your recycled, versatile outdoor coffee table.
A completed outdoor pallet coffee table, complete with glassware, plate, oranges and a bottle of Pellegrino

More D.I.Y. Advice

Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.