Outdoor Table Help

  • Advertise with us

« back to Designing Woodworking Projects forum

Forum topic by stevemchey posted 04-08-2019 11:38 PM 404 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View stevemchey's profile


2 posts in 188 days

04-08-2019 11:38 PM

Topic tags/keywords: outdoor table design


I am looking for some help with the design of the base for a large outdoor table I would like to build. We recently remodeled our home and had to take down the pergola, which left me with some beautiful lumber I would like to use for this project. The lumber I have:

(2) 11’ x 5.5” x 3.5”
(2) 15’ x 7.5” x 3.5”
(8) 15’ x 3.5” x 1.5”
(6) 5’ x 5.5” x 3.5”
(2) 3.5’ x 7.5” x 3.5”
I was hoping to max out the table length, so I am looking into a table of 11’ or 12’. But I am struggling with the best type of base for it: 4-legs, pedestal, trestle, cross-legged, etc.

Any pointers would be appreciated.

7 replies so far

View JohnMcClure's profile


703 posts in 1146 days

#1 posted 04-09-2019 12:18 AM

Trestles, joined by a stretcher. designed for future disassembly in case you move. Its gonna be heavy and you won’t want it to be one piece.
Just my 0.02

-- I'd rather be a hammer than a nail

View pottz's profile (online now)


6312 posts in 1489 days

#2 posted 04-09-2019 02:14 PM

Trestles, joined by a stretcher. designed for future disassembly in case you move. Its gonna be heavy and you won t want it to be one piece.
Just my 0.02

- JohnMcClure

+1 at 12’ that will be pretty heavy so id go with a top that cab be removed from the go with a trestle style also,very strong and i like the look on a long table.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View a1Jim's profile


117721 posts in 4082 days

#3 posted 04-09-2019 03:37 PM

Hi Steve Welcome to Ljs

It depends on what kind of tools you have to work and experience in woodworking with and what kind of material the pergola was made from as to what design you should select. I would suggest as others have said that a trestle design will work but as Pottz says it’s going to be heavy if you use the wood you have without milling it down to more reasonable dimensions. If you have limited experience Norm Abram had a good simple design for a trestle that might work well.

View Delete's profile


439 posts in 877 days

#4 posted 04-09-2019 04:11 PM

Hi Steve, If your looking for a trestle style, made with construction grade lumber in a very heavy duty design, you might want to check this out It’s an extremely solid laminated design that you can build to disassemble, measurements are left up to your needs to determine.

View Aj2's profile


2478 posts in 2303 days

#5 posted 04-09-2019 04:43 PM

If you want it to last .Build it picnic style table spaces in the top.
Construction for indoor tables are not very reliable for outdoor purposes.

-- Aj

View stevemchey's profile


2 posts in 188 days

#6 posted 04-09-2019 06:34 PM

Thank you all so much for the great info.

I love Norm Abram’s table (and instructions). I might just use that concept as my inspiration.

While browsing this site, I also came across this outdoor table project:
It might not be the one to go for, but out of interest, what kind of joins would be used for the three beams in each corner?

View LittleShaver's profile


582 posts in 1125 days

#7 posted 04-09-2019 06:45 PM

Take a look at the Moravian workbench design. It would be easily adaptable to a large table and is completely knockdown.
I’d at least consider the idea of using dowels to align the top with the base of your choice. From the looks of your materials, the top is going to be at least a two person lift and should be able to stay in place with four dowels protruding up from your base.

-- Sawdust Maker

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics