The making of a dining table

April 23, 2013

Now that the frames are assembled, it’s time to start cutting the veneered panel for the top.

I needed to cut the panels square, which was a bit challenging to cross cut something almost 4-feet wide. I bought two metal squares from Woodpecker tools to clamp my Festool rail to create a nice 90-degree angle.

The panels are held inside the frames using wood screws. The screw holes will be covered later with Walnut inlays.

April 13, 2013

It has been a bit slow at the shop, so I jumped on the chance to design and build a new dining table for my home.

I wanted to make a medium-size dining table with a frame-and-panel top that could seat  8-10 people. I’m making the frame of western maple, harvested by a friend of a friend here in Portland. And the panel will be made with some beautiful Makore veneer that I once found in a dumpster down in Oakland.

For the extension leaves, I decided not to follow the usual style of adding leaves in the middle of the table. I think this design looks cool in theory, but unless you can afford very expensive hardware, it can be problematic when the mechanism stops working properly over time and becomes very difficult to open. My design adds extension leaves at both ends of the table, supported by pull-out arms. This eliminates the use of hardware, and is also very simple to make.

I would love to hear your comments on this project, so feel free to leave your thoughts  about the building process, the design, or the techniques that I am using. I plan to add more posts throughout the building process.

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