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Squaring a table

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Forum topic by Oscarmeyer28 posted 04-07-2020 11:01 PM 372 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Oscarmeyer28

2 posts in 58 days


04-07-2020 11:01 PM

Topic tags/keywords: table dinning square flat frame reclaimed wood joining

Hello everyone I’m new here! So I’m building a farm house table out of old barn wood. My wife wants pretty much anything you can see to be in original/untouched

..... That being said how can I make both ends of each table leg square/flat. I plan on putting a board towards the bottom on both legs tieing the 2 cosest legs together. Then a long board connecting the 2 sets. I want the table top to sit flat on the frame but I can’t get the legs/frame square because I can’t square it up! Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I will be planning the bottom of the table top so it will sit flat on the frame. Thanks in advance!


8 replies so far

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Nubsnstubs

1720 posts in 2470 days


#1 posted 04-07-2020 11:23 PM

Use a tape measure diagonally across the top of the frame. Note the inches. Move to the other side, and if the numbers are the same, it’s square. secure it with a conner block. If not, tap or move until your numbers match. Secure it when you get it square.

To verify if the frame is flat, use two pieces of string diagonally to each of the corners. If the strings just touch, the table leg heights are correct. If not, you need to adjust the height by moving the frame up or down the legs until the strings just touch. ............. Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson) www.woodturnerstools.com

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Aj2

2974 posts in 2537 days


#2 posted 04-08-2020 12:06 AM

I would first make or find a way to build from a flat surface.
The wood you have looks nice.
Without a flat surface to build from your chances of build a table without twist is pretty low.

Good Luck

-- Aj

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Phil32

1061 posts in 643 days


#3 posted 04-08-2020 12:53 AM

Jerry’s test is correct if the opposing sides of the table frame are exactly equal. Otherwise use the Pythagorean approach: Remember the numbers 3, 4, and 5. Along one side measure some multiple of 3. On the adjoining side of the square corner, measure the same multiple of 4. Then measure the diagonal between the end points. It should equal exactly 5 of the multiple units.

The diagonal squared (25) is equal to one side squared (9) plus the other side squared (16). 25 = 9 + 16

-- Phil Allin - There are mountain climbers and people who talk about climbing mountains. The climbers have "selfies" at the summit!

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Aj2

2974 posts in 2537 days


#4 posted 04-08-2020 02:01 AM

The other problem building with rough lumber is how do you cut a square end. If you don’t have a flat straight side what is your reference.
The legs and aprons aren’t even the most difficult part of a table. No one even looks at that part for more then a second or two. So just do your best.
The top is the most important part of a table. Lay up those boards for the top so they look nice.
Good Luck

-- Aj

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CWWoodworking

710 posts in 918 days


#5 posted 04-08-2020 03:06 AM



The other problem building with rough lumber is how do you cut a square end. If you don’t have a flat straight side what is your reference.
The legs and aprons aren’t even the most difficult part of a table. No one even looks at that part for more then a second or two. So just do your best.
The top is the most important part of a table. Lay up those boards for the top so they look nice.
Good Luck

- Aj2

+1. Barn lumber is not straight. Part of its charm. Here’s my island I made from FILs barn lumber.

Nevermind the mess. We’re slops. Lol

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theart

186 posts in 1294 days


#6 posted 04-08-2020 12:40 PM



The other problem building with rough lumber is how do you cut a square end. If you don’t have a flat straight side what is your reference.
The legs and aprons aren’t even the most difficult part of a table. No one even looks at that part for more then a second or two. So just do your best.
The top is the most important part of a table. Lay up those boards for the top so they look nice.
Good Luck

- Aj2

Having a square end only matters if the other piece you’re joining to is square. With rough lumber, I would just plan on having to scribe everything. Also, you’re right about the legs/aprons. If the top has enough of an overhang they can be way off without it being visible.

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Lazyman

5259 posts in 2127 days


#7 posted 04-08-2020 12:56 PM


The other problem building with rough lumber is how do you cut a square end. If you don’t have a flat straight side what is your reference.
The legs and aprons aren’t even the most difficult part of a table. No one even looks at that part for more then a second or two. So just do your best.
The top is the most important part of a table. Lay up those boards for the top so they look nice.
Good Luck

- Aj2

+1. In addition to a square end…the ends also have to be parallel to each other too. Also, you don’t just want it to be square when looking down from above. It also needs to be square when looking down the length or you could be worse. You might be able to use winding sticks to check that. As mentioned above, a flat assembly surface will help considerably. You may be able to sort of create one by laying a piece of MDF on the floor and shimming it until a level tells you it is level in all directions. Garage floors are notoriously un-level, BTW. They often have all sorts of dips and humps.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View Oscarmeyer28's profile

Oscarmeyer28

2 posts in 58 days


#8 posted 04-08-2020 02:05 PM

Thank you for all the input! I think I’ll do a combination of the 3,4,5 method on a level MDF board get the top flat and make sure it looks square. I probably should have just squared the legs up instead of keeping them bowed and different sizes but that’s what the boss wants…...probably going to be alot of extra work.

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