This humble yet classy dining room table combines wood, glass and natural elements. While using reclaimed wood in its natural state can honor its previous life, using too much can also appear overly utilitarian. Instead of a solid wood top, this table features an inset, under-lit glass top and coastal motif to bring additional life, color and texture to the project.
Start by cutting four 28" legs from a piece of 4" x 4" post. Next, cut a 3/4" wide by 1 1/2" deep notch 2" from the top of each leg. Using a circular saw with the blade set to 1 1/2", cut each side of the 3/4" notch and then use additional cross cuts and a chisel to remove the remaining wood. Cut four 3" x 3" x 1" triangular gussets from a spare piece of wood and, aligning the gusset with the bottom of the notch, attach one to each leg with construction adhesive and 15 ga. finish nails.
Cut a piece of 3/4" plywood to 28" x 64" with 4" x 45-degree facets in each corner. Temporarily set up the plywood and legs on a flat surface and check for square. Measure the distance between each leg; cut comparable 2" x 3" framing pieces out of 2" x 4" material. Route a 3/4" x 3/4" notch in the 2" cut face of each framing piece and miter the corners at 45 degrees to fit perfectly to the angled legs.
Using construction adhesive and 15 ga. finish nails, attach the legs to the plywood and the 2” x 3” sides to both. Make sure everything is square and plumb and if necessary insert small wood shims prior to nailing. Finally screw the 2” x 3” to the legs at 45 degrees and the plywood to the gussets at 90 degrees.
The top is constructed from 1" reclaimed sheathing joined in the corners. Start by cutting two 36" x 6" and two 72" x 6" pieces. Route a 1/2" x 1/4" notch on one side of each board and miter the corners back at 45 degrees to form a final 36" x 72" top. Through the bottom side of each board drill two pocket screw holes in one end and one hole in the other. Space the holes so that when the corners are joined the holes are offset. On a flat surface, screw the four corners together with pocket screws and wood glue.
Step up the cool factor by installing a low-voltage LED lighting system for the table. You will need:
• One 16' reel of 12v 3200K LED strip lighting with self-stick back
• One LED dimmer
•One 12v 1a wall transformer
Prior to securing the wood top, install the LED strip along the upper edge of the table sides. Start in one corner and slowly peel off the backing while using firm pressure to adhere the LEDs to the wood. Continue around the perimeter. LED strips can be trimmed at any cut line. Look for a dashed line on the strip (usually after every third LED) and cut with a utility knife or scissors. Drill a 3/8" hole in the plywood and pass the power connector through the hole. Hot-glue the remaining portion of the hole closed. Next, plug in the dimmer and attach it to the underside of the plywood with hot glue. Plug the wall transformer into the dimmer and continue with the next step.
Lay a bead of construction adhesive on the top perimeter of the table base. Center the top on the base so the reveal is consistent on all sides. Shoot 15” ga. finish nails at a 45-degree angle through the table sides and into the top at 8” on center. With an orbital sander outfitted with a 220-grit disc, sand all surfaces lightly until smooth. If a more refined look is required, plane all the reclaimed materials prior to assembly.
Fill the table with the motif of choice. Be sure to use only inert and non-toxic materials. In this case, local beach sand, shells and sea glass were selected to honor the history of the home and its location.
DIY Network's Blog Cabin 2013 is a circa-1892 coastal cottage located along the Crystal Coast in North Carolina. The home has been remodeled, based on online voters' selections, and will be given away to one lucky winner in a home sweepstakes in Fall 2013. Pictured is the great room.
Set the glass in place carefully, allowing it to rest on the notch in the top created earlier. Enjoy the pretty scene, which can be changed out with the seasons.