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16 Oct. 2001

Joining wood for table top,plans for garden work bench,balsa wood tower building tips - .

I created the jpeg below to show you how I drilled the pocket holes and dowel holes for the breadboards. To build the base, I begin by cutting all my wood down to size (the picture also shows the bench legs that I cut at the same time).
I use the same tools as I used on the tabletop and distress on the exposed faces of the boards that will form the base. I start by staining the underneath side of the tabletop and then every nook and cranny of the base, bench, and extensions.
I sand down the tabletop with 22o grit sandpaper, wipe off the dust, and apply my first coat of Briwax.
For the Briwax, I just use any old rag and wipe the wax on making sure to get it into the pores of the wood. One of our readers recently made an amazing table and used dowels so I decided to give that a try for the first time ever on this table and I loved it.

I use some wood glue for the dowels, place them in, and begin to clamp the first two planks into one another. I don’t have holes drilled for these screws, I just drive them straight in avoiding the pocket holes that I drilled (those will be to attach to the side aprons).
I found the easiest way to do this is to use the extensions as a way of helping me align the center of the tabletop.
I then mess around with different possible arrangements and look for any irregularities in the edges and fitment of boards next to one another as well as determining what will serve as the topside of the boards. I use an excessive amount of clamps for this part (it may be overkill but my preference is to have nice tight fitting seams).
I mark the planks at 81″ and clamp down the breadboard to the planks to create a straight line for me to cut along.
Make sure the stain is dry and be careful along the edges and keeping the sander in one place for too long.

I used to think that I wanted it distressed a whole lot but have come to find that I prefer for it to be subtly distressed.
I drill a pocket hole on the top edge because I typically use my Kreg right angle clamp to hold it into place.
Once it’s in place, I clamp it all down, climb under the table, and screw it into place using all the pocket holes created in the aprons and a few screws through the supports. I want the table to look rustic but I also want it to be a high quality table that will last for years and years. It’s still rough after this so I take it back to the table saw and swirl it around to smooth out the cut.

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