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Customize our free plans to suit your decor, and build an economical coffee table, console table, and end table -- all in one weekend.
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The tables are designed with all hidden fasteners -- no screw or nail holes to fill -- making them faster and easier to build and finish. The end table, coffee table, and console table plans are also easy to modify to fit your needs. Shorten the console table to coffee table height, and you could use it as a stand for a large-screen TV. Make the end tables longer, narrower, shorter, or taller to fit your space. The project diagrams for each table use the same part letters, but you’ll need to consult the individual cuttings lists for part sizes.
For each step of this project, cut the needed parts to length before you proceed (Project Diagram, Cutting List). Group the blanks for each part, such as the legs, by wrapping them with painter’s tape. Now cut the four matching parts with one pass of the saw -- perfectly matched legs will prevent the table from wobbling.
Glue to the ends of the sides (A) and clamp them to the fronts/backs (B) to create one layer of the table frame (Project Diagram, Drawing 1). Rub your finger across the joint as you apply clamp pressure to ensure the joint faces are even. Repeat this step for the second frame.
Sand the outside faces of the frames using a sanding block and 120-grit sandpaper, and ease all the corners and edges to create accent lines in the finished project. (Always sand in the direction of the wood grain.) Sand the legs (C) in a similar fashion (Project Diagram, Drawing 1).
Stack the two frames (Project Diagram, Drawing 1) using no glue. Add a leg (C) to the outside face of the ends (A) using glue and a clamp -- the edge of the leg should be set back from face of the frame by 3/4 inch. Secure the frame to the leg by drilling 1/8-inch pilot holes and driving 1 1/4-inch panhead sheet-metal screws. Remove the clamp and repeat for the remaining legs.
Cut 1-inch-square dowels to length (Project Diagram, Cutting List) for the corner cleats (D-1) and glue them into the corners of the table (Project Diagram, Drawing 2) to reinforce the corners. Align the bottom of the corner cleats with the bottom edges of the lower frame.
Flip the table on its legs. The boards on the front of the frames, especially with the longer tables like the coffee table and console table, may have some bow to them and the edges and surfaces might not line up. Clamp the boards together to draw the edges tight.
Glue the side cleats (D-2) on the inside of the long faces of the frames (Project Diagram, Drawing 2). Clamp a scrap of wood on the outside face to help align the boards while the glue dries.
The coffee table and console table have a few extra parts not included in the end table. Add the two remaining corner cleats (D-1) on top of the side cleats (D-2). This will provide a place to secure the top cleats (E) (Table Project Diagram, Cutting List).
Cut the top cleats (E) to length and glue in position on top of the corner cleats (Project Diagram, Drawing 2) -- two are at each end of the table, and one in the middle for the coffee and console tables.
Sand the top boards (F-1) and the middle top board (F-2) and ease all of the edges. Place the boards on a flat work surface with the best faces down (Project Diagram, Drawing 3). Center the table on top of the boards, drill 1/8-inch pilot holes through the cleats into the top boards, and drive #8 x 1 1/4-in panhead sheet-metal screws.
Drill pocket holes on the bottom face of the base rails (G) at each end where they attach to the legs (Project Diagram, Drawing 4).
A metal corner brace would be an acceptable substitute for the pocket holes and screws. This will move the rail up the leg slightly, but will not affect the design. Spray-paint the bracket black and screw in position on the underside of the leg and rail.
Cut two scraps of wood to support the base rails (G) off of the table frame (Project Diagram, Drawing 4), this should be the table leg length above the sides minus 1 inch. Sand the base rails (C) and apply glue to the ends. Fit the rails on the spacers between the legs and drive 1 1/4-inch pocket-hole screws through the rails to secure.
Lifting the rails off the floor ever so slightly allows the table to rest on the legs, not the rails, making it more stable.
Remove the tabletop boards and all the parts as needed. Apply a stain of your choice and a clear protective finish following the manufacturer’s instructions. When the finish is complete, reinstall the top boards. Sand between coats with a medium- or fine-grit sanding sponge for a super-smooth finish.