Wood species recommendations for table legs for novice

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Forum topic by dpayne posted 02-20-2020 09:37 PM 300 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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7 posts in 49 days

02-20-2020 09:37 PM

Topic tags/keywords: wood species novice table legs

Hi. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’m new to wood working and furniture building and am planning to build a dining table using an old door from my home as the table top (see photo).

I originally was planning to use the same type of wood that the door is made of to make the legs, but the identity of the wood is unclear (Douglas-fir? Pine? Hardwood veneer?) and, as one poster pointed out, there’s really no need for the wood species of the legs to match that of the table top, as the stain or other finish will tie them together.

Any recommendations for wood type that would be appropriate to serve as legs and apron for the door/tabletop shown and that would be easier for a novice to work with? I’m tending to think just pine, as I’d like to keep the cost relatively low.



6 replies so far

View Madmark2's profile


1017 posts in 1268 days

#1 posted 02-20-2020 09:39 PM

Whatever specie you significant other wants. Ask them, not us.

-- The hump with the stump and the pump!

View LeeRoyMan's profile


807 posts in 406 days

#2 posted 02-20-2020 09:44 PM

Pine would work, but if it were me I would be buying Alder from my lumber distributor.
The reddish color of alder would make matching the door pretty easy and it’s easy to work with and in my opinion takes stain better than pine. Alder is a step up in quality from pine, also, JMO

View dpayne's profile


7 posts in 49 days

#3 posted 02-21-2020 03:47 AM

Thanks, LeeRoyMan. I’ll check into alder.


View LesB's profile


2420 posts in 4123 days

#4 posted 02-21-2020 06:33 PM

Alder is relatively soft and as the legs are subject to being knocked around a bit and getting dents and dings I would not suggest using it. If you can get some straight grained Douglas fir it would be a little better but a hard wood like maple, birch or some white oak with a nice straight grain pattern would work. My personal preference would be the oak and it is not particularly expensive.

-- Les B, Oregon

View bondogaposis's profile


5683 posts in 3031 days

#5 posted 02-21-2020 07:34 PM

Ash would be my vote. Rift sawn if you can get it.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View dpayne's profile


7 posts in 49 days

#6 posted 02-21-2020 10:08 PM

Thanks for the recommendations, Les B. I have a hardwood store nearby and am planning on checking out some of these options.

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