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Please help with coffee table plans

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Forum topic by Eddie33 posted 01-28-2018 05:35 AM 986 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Eddie33

16 posts in 556 days


01-28-2018 05:35 AM

I am new to woodworking,this coffee table will be my second project and I could use some help. My wife picked this style out, so I really want to make it for the living room. I’m having a hard time with the legs, I don’t know the angles or size of lumber I should use. The top will be solid walnut, not sure about the legs as the walnut I have is all 4/4 and I’m not sure that’s thick enough for it to look right. I have some 8/4 oak that would probably look better in size but will the two different woods clash with each other? I plan on using General Finishes Java gel on the entire table if that matters. So can anyone give me a suggestion on the angles of the legs and the size to use I would really appreciate it.


18 replies so far

View wuddoc's profile

wuddoc

349 posts in 4137 days


#1 posted 01-28-2018 07:03 AM

If you know the height, width, and length of the project you can determine a variety of project parts. Their are several books on wood working that come to mind with instructions on how to do this. One of these books that maybe in your local or regional library system is Cabinetmaking and Millwork by John L. Feirer. In my 5th addition the determining the dimension parts of furniture is on page 56.

The almost 1,000 page book is still available on Amazon. It is a textbook but used mostly as a reference book by all types of woodworkers. You will find many answers to questions concerning woodworking construction, techniques and machinery setups.

You can edgeband the table top to look thicker and glue your 4/4 walnut pieces together for heavier thicker looking legs and stretchers. It appears the legs are mitered to the cross stretchers. I would use dowels, half laps, or? to connect the stretchers. That is a design and construction issue you will have to decide. Possibly other LJ’s can jump in to help.

-- Wuddoc

View Eddie33's profile

Eddie33

16 posts in 556 days


#2 posted 01-28-2018 07:17 AM

I will look for that book. The table top is going to be 48X24 if that helps.

View AxkMan's profile

AxkMan

65 posts in 546 days


#3 posted 01-28-2018 07:36 AM

That would be a challenging project. That looks like a curve in the center if I’m not mistaken. You will probably want to plane the center curve out. The top will take weeks to work out the first time.

The legs are probably 30 degrees and it looks like some have an overlapping cross joint. I would otherwise agree with finding a book that contains a similar project.

View LittleShaver's profile

LittleShaver

554 posts in 1039 days


#4 posted 01-28-2018 01:02 PM

I would guess the angle at closer to 15 degrees. 30 seems a bit much. I would pick and angle in the 10-15 degree range and go for it.
The legs look mortise and tenon to me and the cross member to stretcher looks like a bridle joint.

-- Sawdust Maker

View Reinan's profile

Reinan

84 posts in 639 days


#5 posted 01-28-2018 02:04 PM

The leg pattern doesn’t look overly challenging, while it appears to mortise and tenon, you could use a pinned half lap or a bridle joint to attach the verticals to the horizontals, and a cross lap to attach the short assemblies to the long one. I’d agree that 10-15 degrees is about right for the angle.

Be careful if you are using half laps on an angle, set up for the milling carefully and and make sure the work piece is secure. A mitered cut with a dado blade can go bad quickly.

-- -Russ

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BFamous

316 posts in 540 days


#6 posted 01-28-2018 04:40 PM

I’d agree on the 10-15 degree angle as well.

if I get a little time later today I can try to draw it in SketchUp for you.

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

View Woodknack's profile

Woodknack

12842 posts in 2799 days


#7 posted 01-28-2018 05:45 PM

If you don’t have drawing skills, you can make a full size mockup of the legs using cardboard.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View BFamous's profile

BFamous

316 posts in 540 days


#8 posted 01-28-2018 06:47 PM

I drew out the plans on SketchUp for you based on the following assumptions:

1. table top = 24×48 (as you stated)
2. table thickness is 8/4, and it is flat (image does look beveled)
3. table height = 18” (standard coffee table height)
4. 10 degree angle on legs (this looked good to me)
5. legs are inset 6” from the end of the top, 1” from the sides.
6. legs are made from 2×4s (1.5” x 3.5”)

here is the link to the post I put on my site with images at the end that contain the necessary measurements: http://famousartisan.com/diy-modern-coffee-table-plans/

My written notional directions aren’t complete by any means – but I figured I’d get you the dimensions and you can decide on the joinery, etc… and I’ll probably write something up for it later tonight based on how I’d most likely do it myself.

Of note, looking at the plans vs. the picture, 24” wide is going to make the top’s width/length ratio off compared to the picture. You can see the cross legs are way shorter in my drawing. I’m completely guessing, but I think the top in that image is more like 30×48.

Good Luck!

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

5453 posts in 2771 days


#9 posted 01-28-2018 07:21 PM

I would draw a full sized drawing of the legs on a sheet of 1/4” plywood and when you get the angles looking the way you like, set your bevel gauge from the drawing. You don’t even have to know what the angles are in degrees because you use the bevel gauge to set your table saw miter gauge or if you are using hand tools to draw your lines on the wood.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View Eddie33's profile

Eddie33

16 posts in 556 days


#10 posted 01-29-2018 02:05 AM

Wow, that’s great! This helps so much, thank you!!!


I drew out the plans on SketchUp for you based on the following assumptions:

1. table top = 24×48 (as you stated)
2. table thickness is 8/4, and it is flat (image does look beveled)
3. table height = 18” (standard coffee table height)
4. 10 degree angle on legs (this looked good to me)
5. legs are inset 6” from the end of the top, 1” from the sides.
6. legs are made from 2×4s (1.5” x 3.5”)

here is the link to the post I put on my site with images at the end that contain the necessary measurements: http://famousartisan.com/diy-modern-coffee-table-plans/

My written notional directions aren t complete by any means – but I figured I d get you the dimensions and you can decide on the joinery, etc… and I ll probably write something up for it later tonight based on how I d most likely do it myself.

Of note, looking at the plans vs. the picture, 24” wide is going to make the top s width/length ratio off compared to the picture. You can see the cross legs are way shorter in my drawing. I m completely guessing, but I think the top in that image is more like 30×48.

Good Luck!

- BFamous


View AxkMan's profile

AxkMan

65 posts in 546 days


#11 posted 01-29-2018 02:39 AM

That’s a good draft.

Assuming there is a cup in the table top… I was guessing 30 degrees because the table top probably just rests on the legs and is not attached. It looks like a contemporary table and I assume that would be the method to use. I guessed that also from the cup in the top if it is one. If that was the case, 15 degrees might be too shy to hold it in securely… It also looks like an English, contemporary table but I’m guessing as it matches the styles they are doing in England in fine crafting.

However, I would rather go with the plans. Ignore the cup, go with a flat attached one.

View Aj2's profile

Aj2

2321 posts in 2217 days


#12 posted 01-29-2018 02:41 AM

Sigh , Amateurs

-- Aj

View BFamous's profile

BFamous

316 posts in 540 days


#13 posted 01-29-2018 02:42 AM

My pleasure Eddie33. It gave me something to do on a rainy Sunday with no football on TV…

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

View BFamous's profile

BFamous

316 posts in 540 days


#14 posted 01-29-2018 02:45 AM



That s a good draft.

I was guessing 30 degrees because the table top probably just rests on the legs and is not attached. It looks like a contemporary table and I assume that would be the method to use. I guessed that also from the cup in the top. If that was the case, 15 degrees might be too shy to hold it in securely…

However, I would rather go with the plans. Ignore the cup, go with a flat attached one.

- AxkMan

When looking at the pic, I definitely think there could be a cup in it too. If so, I agree it could be built so that the leg tops aren’t parallel to the ground, but instead are sloped in a bit to allow the top to just rest on them. But yeah, trying to get that cup just right would be a challenge (albeit a somewhat fun one…)

-- Brian Famous :: Charlotte, NC :: http://www.FamousArtisan.com

View avsmusic1's profile

avsmusic1

442 posts in 1104 days


#15 posted 01-29-2018 02:53 AM

I know you didn’t ask for finishing advice so feel free to disregard this but, consider skipping the stain on walnut. Arm-r-seal alone would make a 2’x4’ walnut top sing

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