Thursday, July 3, 2008

Dining Room Table 7

9:19 PM Comments 0

The legs of the table were going to be connected to two giant stringers that would be bolted to the underside of the table.  Below are the four boards that make up the two stringers.  One board is 44″ long, 5″ wide, and 1.5″ thick, while the smaller one is 40″ long, 3″ wide, and 1.25″ thick.

The next step was to unscrew the smaller board and route a mortise in both the top of the legs and the underside of the stringer.  Here they are clamped together while the glue dries.

Here is the finished leg.  The lower layer of the stringer is connected to the leg using two loose mortise-and-tenon joints, and the top layer of the stringer is connected to the lower layer using five drywall screws and glue.  Prior to assembly all the parts were sanded with 220 grit sandpaper in preparation for the finishing stage.

After the legs were completed, it was time to turn my attention back to the top.  More specifically, the sanding of that gigantic top!  One factor I had going for me was that the clients wanted a rustic, aged look to the table, and specifically wanted divots and undulations, which meant that the entire top didn’t have to be glass smooth.

I initially tackled it with the good old belt sander, focusing on the joints and any glue that I had not scraped off.  The aggresive sanding nature of the belt sander, and the 100 grit belt, made it all pretty easy going.

They also wanted all the edges and corners to be irregularly rounded and ease over, so the belt sander came in hand again.

One drawback to the aggressive sanding belt was that it left thousands of lines in the top that would pop out the minute it was stained, which meant that I had to pay careful attention to thoroughly sanding the top in order to ensure that all the lines were eliminated.

As a side note, it took roughly three hours to sand both sides of the top.

After the sanding was completed it was time to attach the iron work and the legs.   With the tops underside facing up, the legs were attached using three 4″ lag bolts and the iron bars were attached at each end with four 1.5″ lag bolts.

In addition to the four bolts through the iron plate, the end of the bar that connected to the legs also had a metal sleeve that passed through the leg to accepted a bolted on cast iron rosette.  The iron bars were each 7/8″ thick, which ensured that even under stress they would resist flexing.  They also had a “tree bark” design  on the surface, rather than just being smooth.