Dining Table Build – Final Assembly

It is final assembly time for the dining table! After many weeks of ripping, routing, glueing, and leg assembly, the table was ready for a drive up to Fort Collins, CO for final assembly on location. Unfortunately, I had a continuous brain fart for about two hours and did not take any photos of the table packed in the CR-V for the drive. Let’s just say that it was majestic and impressive that the entire table fit in there. The back window was open for the entire ride and it was fantastic. Live reenactment After getting to Fort Collins the final assembly process was pretty straightforward. The first step was to reassemble the table top into one piece, since I had to take it apart for “shipment”. I then attached the base to the table top using the figure 8 fasteners I discussed last week. After getting the table top…

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Dining Table Build – Table Base

We are chugging along in the dining table build. Last week covered building the table legs, and this week will cover building the rest of the table base and attaching the table top to the base.  The base itself was fairly quick and easy to build. Using 2”x6” boards for the outside runners, and 2”x4” boards for the perpendicular supports, I built a rectangular frame for the table top. Simple design from SketchUp I used pocket hole screws to both build the frame and attach it to the table legs. I only glued the inner perpendicular supports to the table legs. I do not have any experience with building something like this, but I left the outside supports unglued to allow them to expand and contract across their width. Since the piece is only 5½” wide, the wood movement should be small enough to not cause any issues within the…

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Dining Table Build – Table Legs

I’ve spent quite a bit of time talking about the table top of the dining table build. How I made the mortise and tenons, glued together the table top, created the breadboards, and drilled the holes for the breadboard pins. It’s probably a good time to start talking about the legs that make that table top stand.  The design of the table calls for two slightly beefier legs to support everything. In order to get the beefier leg size, I used 4”x4” lumber that was ripped down to 3”x3” to get rid of the rounded lumber edges. After ripping the pieces and then cutting them to size, it was time to attach them together. The simplest way to do this was to use pocket hole joints on the inner three cross pieces to attach them to the outer posts.  I'm pretty much a pro at photoshop. The red arrows show…

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Dining Table Build – Breadboard Pins

Back to back weeks writing about the dining table build, crazy! This week is all about drilling the holes used to pin the breadboard in place. Once again using my favorite diagram, the pins are used to hold the breadboard tight against edge of the table, while allowing the wood to expand and contract along the length. Source: https://www.woodcraft.com/blog_entries/breadboard-ends All of the pins go through both the breadboard and tenons on the table top. The middle pin hole is sized exactly the same as the pin, locking that point in place. Then the rest of the holes are elongated along the length of the breadboard. This allows the table itself to expand and contract separately from the breadboard. In order to drill the holes for the pins, I had to first attach both breadboards to the table top. This was not an easy process. Unfortunately, across 8 feet the breadboard…

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Dining Table Build – Breadboards

Today I am finally continuing the series on the dining table that I built for my friends. Previously I have gone through ripping common lumber for the table, adjusting the design to account for seasonal wood movement, routing the tenons, and glueing the table top together. This week I’ll walk through the steps I took to route the mortises in the breadboards.  Breadboards are the long boards attached to the sides of the table top to hide the joints of each panel. Sometimes called a rail, these have to allow for seasonal wood movement. For my table, I decided to create mortise and tenon joints that allow the table top to expand and contract within the breadboards. Below is a great picture of the mortise and tenon joints that go into a breadboard or rail. Source: https://www.woodcraft.com/blog_entries/breadboard-ends Specific to my design, there are nine mortise and tenon connections within each breadboard.…

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Retaining Wall – Part 2

https://giphy.com/gifs/britney-spears-oops-i-did-it-again-FjWEXNradAzYY Source: https://giphy.com/gifs/britney-spears-oops-i-did-it-again-FjWEXNradAzYY I missed another blog post again last week. I’m not proud of it and there’s no real excuses this time. Back on track this week with the final part of the retaining wall installation.  After removing the old chain link fence and digging the trench for the new retaining wall, I could get down to the actual wall install. I made sure to dig the trench to about 8” below grade prior to installing the first row of 6” x 6” x 8’ timbers. With ~2” of gravel as a base for leveling and stability, that meant that the first row of timbers would be completely buried in the end. This helps make the base of the wall secure for the long run. Another key piece of installing the first row of timbers was to make sure that they were level. Behind the wall a perforated tube…

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Retaining Wall – Part 1

Those of you reading out there may have noticed that I took last week off from the blog. I try to stay consistent with my posts, but with the storm two weekends ago and the power outage, I didn’t post until the middle of that week. On top of that, I began a project that has been taking up a lot of my time and making me pretty exhausted: building a new retaining wall. Our property, amongst other issues, is significantly higher than our rear neighbors. On the east side of the workshop, there is was a chain link fence that held up our entire yard (not ideal). It's kind of hard to tell here, but that chain link fence on the left is holding up about 2' of our yard. The storm which took out our tree a couple of weekends ago also took down the fence between us…

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Look Out Below

Today’s post is being written on a Tuesday, instead of the typical Sunday routine. That is because Denver, and a large portion of the front range of Colorado, experienced extremely high winds over the weekend. Our house lost power from Saturday evening until Monday morning and unfortunately, that is not all we lost. Let’s take a collective break from the dining table build this week to say a proper goodbye to a ~70 year old tree. Note the wonderful shade that the tree provided in the afternoon (and the old, terrible hoophouse). Our shade tree, while not beautiful, was an impressive elm that dominated the front landscape of our yard. On Saturday, Allyson and I had started working inside, knowing that a big storm was coming our way. We felt the wind calm and then the house was hit by winds so strong it felt like the pressure wave from…

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Dining Table Build – Tabletop Glue Up

In this week’s iteration of the dining table build, the tabletop glue up! Last week was all about routing each of the 19 individual boards to have tenons on each of their ends. In an effort that was probably the most time consuming part of the entire dining table build, I had to route 76 different sides of the boards. A repetitive task that I was happy to be done with and on to the next thing. In order to turn 19 individual 2x5” boards into a 95” long table, I needed to glue and then screw them together with pocket hole joints. To begin, I once again got into an assembly line groove and drilled 5 pocket holes into one side of each individual board. I varied the pocket hole locations across boards so that the joints would be offset in final assembly. After drilling the pocket holes I…

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Dining Table Build – Routing for Days

We have come to the most time consuming part of the dining table build. Routing. In order to create the mortise and tenon joints I outlined last week to deal with seasonal wood movement, I had to route every board used in the table top. I decided to start with making the tenons. This meant routing 19 boards on both sides, and in order to create a ½” tenon in the middle of the 1 ½” board, I had to route ½” from each side. If you’re following along and doing the math with me, that means routing away ½” of wood from 76 different sides.  To further complicate matters, each tenon had to be 2 ½” long, which meant taking 4 different passes with a ¾” wide router. Long story short, this meant an absurd amount of routing was required to create all of the tenons. Full disclosure, I…

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