Quantcast
  • We invite you to join UKWorkshop.
    Members can turn off viewing Ads!

First project - dining table

UKworkshop.co.uk

Help Support UKworkshop.co.uk:

OliT

Established Member
Joined
19 Jun 2019
Messages
28
Reaction score
0
Location
London
Hi all,

I'm about to start on my first proper project and was looking for some advice.

I'm making a kitchen table that is about 1200-1300x850. Is there a rule of thumb to work out the size/depth of timber I need for the frame? I can't post link/pics yet but its a fairly standard table with turned legs and a cross beam c150mm off the floor (between both ends and along the length in the middle of the table)

Also, how deep should I make the tenons? The legs are 69mm2. Is there a rule of thumb for that?

Thanks in advance,
Oli
 

MikeG.

Established Member
Joined
24 Aug 2008
Messages
10,176
Reaction score
666
Location
Essex/ Suffolk border
A table as a first project is very ambitious.

The depth of the tenons question answers itself when you look at the detail of the mortises in the top of the legs. They (the mortises) will intersect. Where they do, that's the depth of the tenons. Not everyone does it, but when I make a table I put a finger joint (box joint) on the end of the tenons of adjacent apron rails to extend the length of each tenon and to produce a longer glue-line. There is also a bit more timber backing up your peg if you are draw-boring the joint. The strength of these joints is critical to the strength of the table, and much of the strength of a M&T joint comes from the shoulders. It is imperative that you have large enough shoulders, and that they are cut perfectly.

As for the depth of the aprons..........look at old tables. They'll inevitably be in the range of 75 to 100mm deep. However, it's really important to understand why. They're not that depth so that your teenagers can sit on the table, or so that you can re-build an engine on it. They're that depth A/ because they can't be much deeper without interfering with the legs of people sitting at the table, and B/ to make as strong as possible a join with the legs. See my previous paragraph about the M&Ts. The primary function of the apron isn't to support the table top, but to hold the legs at right angles, and resist racking (horizontal forces trying to "parallelogram" the table).
 

OliT

Established Member
Joined
19 Jun 2019
Messages
28
Reaction score
0
Location
London
I wrote a long reply which got lost in the sending... but there we go.

Firstly, thank you - that's really helpful. It's not entirely true that this is my first project, it's just the first in a long time. I made a desk of similar construction many years ago which is still going strong.

I think I'll just peg the M&T rather than draw boring, but will reflect on that a bit further. I like the idea of finger joints on the intersecting tenons, but again I suspect I'd be pushing my luck trying that this time round.

I appreciate what you're saying in terms of apron depth, and I went for a design with the cross beam at the bottom of the leg to provide that extra support and help mitigate for my lack of expertise in making perfect M&Ts. I'll probably go for something around 70-75mm.

Thanks
Oli
 
Top