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Forum topic by Neophyte74 posted 09-16-2019 02:06 AM 259 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Neophyte74

14 posts in 34 days


09-16-2019 02:06 AM

Topic tags/keywords: mahogany dining table

This is my first project of this type. The attached picture is the inspiration for my project. The only difference is the table in the picture has a pine wood top and my table top will be Sapele (lower cost type of mahogany). I have the following questions: 1) what type and length of screws should I use (the top Sapele boards will be one inch thick and underneath support boards will be 3/4 inch thick) 2) how deep should my pilot holes be and what is the proper relationship between the width of the wood screw and the width of the pilot hole drill bit 3) what type of wood should I use for underneath support boards – it’s not a visible part of table so it does not need to be pretty but I’m guessing that it needs to be a hardwood for strength purposes 4) what problems are likely to arise that a rookie woodworker might not know enough to be worried about? Thank you in advance for any advice you can share


4 replies so far

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bilyo

853 posts in 1614 days


#1 posted 09-16-2019 03:07 PM

First. I’m assuming that you are not gluing the top boards together edge to edge so that the battens are what holds them together. If you are gluing them together, you don’t need the battens.

Your biggest concern will be accommodating expansion and contraction of the wood as temperature and humidity changes. This occurs mostly perpendicular to the grain. The typical way to fasten cross grain battens like this is to make elongated holes in the battens for the screws so that as the top expands or contracts the screws can move with it by sliding in the hole. I like to use this type of screw for this purpose. Use screws that are long enough to pass through the battens and about 3/4” into the top boards. Make the elongated holes in the battens large enough so that the screws can slide in them. Make your pilot holes in the top boards about the size of the screw shank (thickness of the steel between the threads) or a bit smaller.

I would make the battens out of the same material but, they could be some that you have rejected for appearance reasons. However, they should not, of course, have any structural defects. Having said that, the batten material is not critical.

I just noticed the edge thickening pieces that are shown in the pictures. Those end pieces will have the same expansion/contraction issues as the battens. If you must have them, Do some research on how to make breadboard ends. Come back if you have any questions about that.

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Neophyte74

14 posts in 34 days


#2 posted 09-17-2019 12:26 AM

Would there be any value in gluing and adding battens? If not is one method better than the other? Also what is the best way to create the elongated holes

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bilyo

853 posts in 1614 days


#3 posted 09-21-2019 02:47 AM

If I understand your question, no. There is no need to edge glue the planks for the top and add the battens. The edge glued planks will be plenty strong without the battens.

Some will drill a hole and then rock it back and forth to elongate the hole. Another way is to use a router. You could also drill two holes and then cut away the material between them. The main thing to remember is to make the holes perpendicular to the grain of the top, not the battens.

Again, be sure to address the cross grain piece at the ends of the table top. If glued continuously over its full length, it will probably cause splitting of the top due to cross grain expansion/contraction.

The method you use is your preference. Neither is better. It just depends on the look and character you want. Edge glueing will give you a more refined seamless look. The non-glued method will accentuate the spaces between boards and look more rustic.

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bilyo

853 posts in 1614 days


#4 posted 09-21-2019 02:57 AM

Deleted double post. Not sure how that happened.

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