Dining Table – Base – Part 2 of 4

I decided to split up the construction into two separate posts categorized by the base and the top.  Some of the construction happened simultaneously, but for the most part, I pretty much constructed the base before I got the top done.

With the base, I started with the legs.  Since I was unable to get solid lumber at 6″ x 6″, I decided to build up the size of the legs by making, essentially, square, hollow columns.  I decided on this instead of stacking up the pieces for solid legs since I didn’t want to see the glue lines on the legs.  With the columns, it would end up having the same grain direction on all four sides of the legs.

I struggled for a bit with the best way to cut the leg quarters since I needed the cut to be on a 45° angle.  I ended up settling a multi-step process that involved the bandsaw to make the rough cuts and then followed up by the jointer to smooth out the cuts.

With the leg quarters now cut, I moved on to glueing up each leg.  I wanted to make sure that the corners were as tight as possible.  In hindsight, I should have spent a bit more time planning this out, as my end results were not as perfect as I had wanted, but, all-in-all, they turned out pretty good and solid for my needs.

While the legs setup, I moved onto the feet.  The design called for a massive build up of three-layers of my 2″ stock.  I glued and clamped these up after the legs were done.

The leg design called for a bead near the top.  For this cut, I setup a molding cutter in my table saw with the profile of the cut needed.  After that was cut, i then used the bandsaw to rough cut the contours.

With the legs pretty much done, I moved on to getting the contours of the feet cut.  I probably should have cut the counters before the glue-up on the individual layers, as trying to maneuver the whole massive piece with the bandsaw proved to be challenging.  Had to spend quite a good amount of time sanding them out to get the final results.  

I then moved onto cutting the recesses for the legs to sit in, as well as the base cross-rail.  Once these were done, I was able to glue the legs to the feet.

I designed the table base so that it could be easily broken down, if needed.  The feet cross-rail, table-top cross-rails, and leg capitals lock together through a combination of overlaps and screws.  Since I did not have access to 2″ thick lumber in the length I needed for the top cross-rail supports, I needed to laminate two 1′ pieces together to create the rails.  

With the rails complete, I worked on the leg capitals so that the recesses all worked together to help lock the base together.  Also, the tabletop would be built up around the perimeter to give the illusion of a 2″ thick top.  So I had to accommodate the various thickness of material the rails would encounter along the top with some additional recesses.

With the base pretty much complete, I moved on to finish it and fabricate the tabletop.   You can see the tabletop fabrication in the Part 3.