Hey all, Nick Here!
A while back Beth and I acquired this sweet claw foot table from an elderly couple. (what IS it about antique tables being painted yellow?!)
Long ago they had chopped it down from a full-size dining table into this sweet coffee table. I knew that I wanted to restore it to its original purpose the second I set eyes on it. Don’t get me wrong… it was a nice coffee table. I am guessing as low as it set that it was probably modified some time in the seventies.
The table top just sat on the base and was pretty wobbly… this aided in my ability to persuaded my lover into letting me redesign it.
First step was to disassemble and take count on what we actually had to work with. Everything was held together with “New Seng” hardware, dating this piece back into the early 1900’s. I am thinking between 1908 and 1917 based on the patents of the hardware.
Notice the arrow, yeah that piece would have originally been around 26” not 10”. This is the piece we will be redesigning and it is a good thing we are too because the wood was split in a few different critical areas.
The pedestal was built out of white oak that measured 1 1/4” thick. With a 1/16th” oak veneer wrapped around it.
Knowing that we intended to paint the piece, we went with Poplar wood. This still gives us the strength we need, while saving use about 50% on cost (if we went with oak).
We purchased our lumber from Lowe’s and cut them down to 28”.
Because it is difficult to find 1 1/4” pieces of lumber we, purchased 1” and 1/2” Boards gluing them together.
Once the glue was set up, we set the table saw to have a 22.5* angle, ripped the one side measured 3 7/8” and cut the other side. Like so:
Once all eight pieces have been ripped down at 22.5* angles, we glued each joint using Titebond III and proceeded to assemble.
Once it is assembled we took several ratchet straps and cinched them around the lumber, aligning and manipulating as we went.
Using my handy dandy yard stick, I marked a 10” circle on a pizza cardboard, cut it out, then trace on the top of the pedestal.
Next up… sand until it’s round! JUST KIDDING. Can you imaging how long that would take? Sorry, not pictured is me buried in a sea of wood shavings. That’s right we hand planed this baby to be cylindrical. In all honesty it didn’t take long with a really sharp plane and a little muscle. You can get this thing done in a couple hours, and lets be honest… there is not substitute for running a hand plane down a piece of lumber. Ok maybe one, but we’ll keep it clean folks.
Once I hand finished with the hand plane, I got out the orbital sander and worked my way through 80 and 100 grit to smooth out the remaining rough edges and finished it off by hand with 150 and 220.
Now that I’m done sanding, I marked the location of the holes with a scratch awl and center punched the drilling locations.
Then we used a 7/32” drill bit to drill pilot holes. This keeps the wood from splitting when you assembly the rounded base.
We assembled the base using wood glue and 1 1/4” Kreg Screws.
Then we laid out the hole location for each legs 3/8” Studs. Drilling a a start drill also 7/32” and then 3/8”. I actually ended up using a Kreg Pocket-hole drill bit.
Assemble the legs and the top supports and we put the top back on.
At this point, we’re done with the ‘rebuilding part’, and ready to dress ‘er up!
We’ll be painting the base and apron of the table, and Beth will be stripping the top surface to do her signature stain design! It’s going to be awesome! Stay tuned!
Disclosure! we’re SUPER HONORED to have been chosen as a “Lowes Creator”, and were provided with a Lowes gift card to HELP with the cost of supplies… but as always, all ideas, thoughts and opinions are 100% our own. Because that’s how we roll yo.