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Forum topic by Shemadeathing posted 02-06-2019 05:01 PM 485 views 1 time favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Shemadeathing

8 posts in 104 days


02-06-2019 05:01 PM

Topic tags/keywords: trestle farm table

Hello! I am new here and hoping this is the right place to ask a question. I am building my first table and couldn’t really find plans for one I liked so I am roughly following a picture of one that I liked.

My question is, how would be the best way to attach the center beam/support to the trestles? I am not quite comfortable with the idea of tenon/mortises yet. I originally planned on attaching via pocket screws/glue but will that be strong enough? Should I use a lag bolt from the outside instead? Also, should the 45 supports be screwed or could those be glued/pin-nailed?

The is constructed from Doug fir. I haven’t graduated myself to nicer lumber yet :)

Also I have attached every piece of the trestle with glue and screws but I feel like I could have pin-nailed the feet to the bottom 4×4. Am I over-doing it?

Thanks in advance for any words of wisdom!
Christina


17 replies so far

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SMP

841 posts in 265 days


#1 posted 02-06-2019 05:12 PM

Hmm, so more of an Ana White type build? Hard to say without knowing skill level and what tools you have access to, but my personal opinion is if working on construction grade lumber, to take this opportunity to learn the mortise and tenon. Just need a drill and chisel. Start small and if you mess up, enlarge it. Worst case you are out a few bucks, but learned a new skill.
If still hesitant, another low entry cost option is dowels and a doweling jig, midrange, the Beadlock system at Rockler, and pro version the festool domino.
https://www.rockler.com/woodworking-jigs/joinery-jigs

If you want to learn to make heirloom quality items in a traditional way, these videos are hard to beat:
https://woodworkingmasterclasses.com/videos/trestle-table-project-info/

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LittleShaver

525 posts in 979 days


#2 posted 02-06-2019 05:28 PM

When I started woodworking, Crate and Barrel was a big thing. Made several pieces out of construction grade lumber with exposed lag bolts. They were definitely over-built, but are still holding together after 40+ years. Do whatever looks good to you. I applaud you working from a picture. I think that skill will serve you well over time. My wife often points out pictures and asks that I build it.

-- Sawdust Maker

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Shemadeathing

8 posts in 104 days


#3 posted 02-06-2019 05:29 PM

Yes, I guess you could call it Ana White style. I would love to hone my skill in the next few years toward learning more heirloom type skills, but for right now, this has been a comfortable place to start and more budget friendly for me :)

I do own a doweling jig but haven’t really used it yet. I had thought about that as well. This might be a good time to learn that. I’ll take a look at some videos on tenon/mortises again, it left me feeling a bit overwhelmed, I’m not super handy with hand tools yet (you should have seen me trying to help my son make a dovetail box yesterday, lol. If my table looks anything like that we might be in trouble!).

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Shemadeathing

8 posts in 104 days


#4 posted 02-06-2019 05:37 PM



When I started woodworking, Crate and Barrel was a big thing. Made several pieces out of construction grade lumber with exposed lag bolts. They were definitely over-built, but are still holding together after 40+ years. Do whatever looks good to you. I applaud you working from a picture. I think that skill will serve you well over time. My wife often points out pictures and asks that I build it.

- LittleShaver

Thanks! I do kind of like the clunky look of lumber and it’s going to hold up better than anything else I could buy for the same cost (ikea, etc).

Someday I will built something out of “real” wood. But that will probably be when my kiddos are grown and out of the house and I have more time to dabble with it :)

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BFamous

315 posts in 480 days


#5 posted 02-06-2019 05:57 PM

Some other ideas for you, short of mortise and tenons and not having to learn a doweling jig…

To attach the beams to the trestles, you could
1. Use 6” lag screws from the top/bottom which no one would ever see. Though you could countersink and plug to hide if you were concerned with the potential visibility. One issue here is you’d be screwing into end grain, but 2 on each side should still hold especially if you’re using wood glue for a permanent bond.
2. You could use a 1/2” or 3/4” drill bit and drill two holes through the top & bottom into the center beam going into the beam at least 2”, and then use the same size oak dowel as a peg in the holes. Along with wood glue, this should hold up just fine once you have downward pressure from the table top.

For the feet, glue and pin nails would work fine. The nails (or screws) are really only there to hold things together until the glue dries. Once wood glue (like titebond) dries, you aren’t pulling the pieces apart if you applied it sufficiently.

For the 45s, short of mortise and tenons, I’d probably do dowels or countersink screws and plug the holes. You do want to make certain these are secure, as they will provide some lateral stability to the entire piece.

Disclaimer: I can’t stand visible fasteners, so I’d go to almost any length to hide the screws/bolts… Take my answers with a grain of salt knowing they are jaded due to my design preferences.

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

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LittleShaver

525 posts in 979 days


#6 posted 02-06-2019 06:07 PM

I also waited until the kids were old enough to NOT destroy whatever they came in contact with before moving up to “real” wood and more delicate construction. Most of the construction lumber pieces have moved on (given away) and I no longer make pieces for the house out of Big Box lumber. Shop pieces are the exception.

Just keep building. Each project is an opportunity for a new skill.

My daughter has made a few pieces. So far she is using pocket screws (shudder), but I’m sure she’ll move along to more traditional joinery eventually.

My son is largely into metal, but his son is showing interest in wood. Fortunately, my son learned enough from me to get his son off on the right foot.

I see a lot of cords in the picture you posted. Hand tools allow more kiddo participation.

-- Sawdust Maker

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SMP

841 posts in 265 days


#7 posted 02-06-2019 06:14 PM

Another option is use black bolts and washers, and put some in other strategic places to give it the look that you MEANT to put them there, or use teh iron “rod”. Kind of like these: https://www.custommade.com/iron-bolt-table/by/edgegraindesigns/

http://www.graytablehome.com/the-ironbolt/

https://antiquewoodworks.com/sharedpics/4clients/2010/t/sharonc/photos/102_3813.shtml

I like the look of hte square bolts and malleable iron washers.

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ChefHDAN

1375 posts in 3209 days


#8 posted 02-06-2019 07:48 PM

Given you most likely will want to be able to take this apart for moving etc. and given where you’re rating your skills, I would suggest using Bed Bolts to attach the stretcher between your trestles. You may want to add some dowel pins into the joint without glue to prevent any twisting of the stretcher. With the same thought of being able to move the piece in the future, I would use screws to attach the diagonal bracing without glue.

-- I've decided 1 mistake is really 2 opportunities to learn.. learn how to fix it... and learn how to not repeat it

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Shemadeathing

8 posts in 104 days


#9 posted 02-07-2019 05:16 AM



I also waited until the kids were old enough to NOT destroy whatever they came in contact with before moving up to “real” wood and more delicate construction. Most of the construction lumber pieces have moved on (given away) and I no longer make pieces for the house out of Big Box lumber. Shop pieces are the exception.

Just keep building. Each project is an opportunity for a new skill.

My daughter has made a few pieces. So far she is using pocket screws (shudder), but I m sure she ll move along to more traditional joinery eventually.

My son is largely into metal, but his son is showing interest in wood. Fortunately, my son learned enough from me to get his son off on the right foot.

I see a lot of cords in the picture you posted. Hand tools allow more kiddo participation.

- LittleShaver

Haha, I had no idea that pocket screws were so offensive!

I am hoping to acquire some more hand tools for me as well as for the kiddos to use by this summer. I envision many summer days spent learning how to use them. Thanks!

View Shemadeathing's profile

Shemadeathing

8 posts in 104 days


#10 posted 02-07-2019 05:23 AM



Some other ideas for you, short of mortise and tenons and not having to learn a doweling jig…

To attach the beams to the trestles, you could
1. Use 6” lag screws from the top/bottom which no one would ever see. Though you could countersink and plug to hide if you were concerned with the potential visibility. One issue here is you d be screwing into end grain, but 2 on each side should still hold especially if you re using wood glue for a permanent bond.
2. You could use a 1/2” or 3/4” drill bit and drill two holes through the top & bottom into the center beam going into the beam at least 2”, and then use the same size oak dowel as a peg in the holes. Along with wood glue, this should hold up just fine once you have downward pressure from the table top.

For the feet, glue and pin nails would work fine. The nails (or screws) are really only there to hold things together until the glue dries. Once wood glue (like titebond) dries, you aren t pulling the pieces apart if you applied it sufficiently.

For the 45s, short of mortise and tenons, I d probably do dowels or countersink screws and plug the holes. You do want to make certain these are secure, as they will provide some lateral stability to the entire piece.

Disclaimer: I can t stand visible fasteners, so I d go to almost any length to hide the screws/bolts… Take my answers with a grain of salt knowing they are jaded due to my design preferences.

- BFamous

Thanks, those are great options I will consider. I did give my doweling kit a try today to attach the 45s on the trestle but I felt like it wasn’t secure enough, I’m sure it was user error, I need to watch a few videos on how to use that. I like the idea of fastening with the dowels instead of counter sinking screws and then needing to plug the holes.

View Shemadeathing's profile

Shemadeathing

8 posts in 104 days


#11 posted 02-07-2019 05:25 AM



Another option is use black bolts and washers, and put some in other strategic places to give it the look that you MEANT to put them there, or use teh iron “rod”. Kind of like these: https://www.custommade.com/iron-bolt-table/by/edgegraindesigns/

http://www.graytablehome.com/the-ironbolt/

https://antiquewoodworks.com/sharedpics/4clients/2010/t/sharonc/photos/102_3813.shtml

I like the look of hte square bolts and malleable iron washers.

- SMP

That’s funny, I actually thought about doing this but I really like the look of the center beam in wood so for this table I will probably try to figure out that. Thanks!

View SMP's profile

SMP

841 posts in 265 days


#12 posted 02-07-2019 04:43 PM

That’s funny, I actually thought about doing this but I really like the look of the center beam in wood so for this table I will probably try to figure out that. Thanks!

- Shemadeathing

From your responses, what I would suggest then is using lag bolts, and “fake” tenon to cover the bolt head. It will look like a mortise and tenon from solid wood. Way less skill involved, but you will actually learn to use a chisel which will come in handy later. I can’t find a great article on it , and I don’t have a login to download this pdf, but if you look at this pic then I think you can understand what I mean: https://www.woodmagazine.com/woodworking-tips/techniques/joinery/faux-tenons

another http://blog.oldwolfworkshop.com/2013/08/the-lonesome-desk.html

These things would work well under a fake tenon, but hard to find singles. https://www.homedepot.com/p/FastenMaster-HeadLok-4-1-2-in-Heavy-Duty-Flathead-Fastener-50-Box-FMHLGM412-50/202268258

I may have a bunch in my toolbox.

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tbone

285 posts in 4044 days


#13 posted 02-07-2019 06:40 PM

As you can see, this IS the right place to ask a question! I can’t add to any of these helpful responses, but I would suggest that if you build a bench to go with the table, that might be a good place to experiment with mortise and tenon joinery. You’ll be glad you did.
By the way, stick with Lumberjocks and pretty soon you will be able to weigh in on other woodworkers’ questions and give THEM advice. I think this forum welcomes all skill levels, and we all like to learn as much as we like to teach.

-- Kinky Friedman: "The first thing I'll do if I'm elected is demand a recount."

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LittleShaver

525 posts in 979 days


#14 posted 02-07-2019 07:23 PM


As you can see, this IS the right place to ask a question! I can t add to any of these helpful responses, but I would suggest that if you build a bench to go with the table, that might be a good place to experiment with mortise and tenon joinery. You ll be glad you did.
By the way, stick with Lumberjocks and pretty soon you will be able to weigh in on other woodworkers questions and give THEM advice. I think this forum welcomes all skill levels, and we all like to learn as much as we like to teach.

- tbone

AMEN to that.

-- Sawdust Maker

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Shemadeathing

8 posts in 104 days


#15 posted 02-07-2019 09:48 PM


That’s funny, I actually thought about doing this but I really like the look of the center beam in wood so for this table I will probably try to figure out that. Thanks!

- Shemadeathing

From your responses, what I would suggest then is using lag bolts, and “fake” tenon to cover the bolt head. It will look like a mortise and tenon from solid wood. Way less skill involved, but you will actually learn to use a chisel which will come in handy later. I can t find a great article on it , and I don t have a login to download this pdf, but if you look at this pic then I think you can understand what I mean: https://www.woodmagazine.com/woodworking-tips/techniques/joinery/faux-tenons

another http://blog.oldwolfworkshop.com/2013/08/the-lonesome-desk.html

These things would work well under a fake tenon, but hard to find singles. https://www.homedepot.com/p/FastenMaster-HeadLok-4-1-2-in-Heavy-Duty-Flathead-Fastener-50-Box-FMHLGM412-50/202268258

I may have a bunch in my toolbox.

- SMP

This is brilliant! I am going to fiddle around with this idea, I think that will be exactly what I am looking for, thanks!!!

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