I wanted a coffee table after selling my old stuff. Using scrap timber & hairpin legs, I made a simple DIY coffee table in an afternoon.
Here’s a DIY Coffee table project.
I started with discarded wood. Since it was scrap, I wasn’t bothered with exact proportions, but the plywood was around 2 feet by 3 feet (the final table with the 24 overhang is 25″W x 45″L x 17 5/8″H). I used scrap plywood to see how big the completed table would be. This is an approximation since the scrap on top sticks out above the plywood.
I gathered as many leftover 2x4s as I could find – some edges were rounded because it’s building timber, and some are higher grade for furniture projects. I want a slab or live edge circular for a coffee table, so precision wasn’t a major goal. I would eventually sand and stain the woodwork to get a more consistent finish.
I adjusted the angles to incorporate as many long scraps as possible. The 45-degree angle seemed ideal, so I cut pieces on my mitre saw and started lining them up.
Line everything up as I cut
As I neared each edge, I clipped scraps to square it off. It came together quickly!
Coffee table setup
Using wood glue and bar clamps, I attached the 2x4s to the plywood. This is merely a first stage; I subsequently strengthened the back of it with the wood screws when I added the legs (pre-drill the holes!).
Add hairpin legs
Hairpin legs for coffee table were ordered from Amazon a few months ago and forgot about them in the garage (the ones I purchased aren’t available as of this posting, so I’m linking to the similar design but somewhat cheaper ones). My guy hated the legs. But I made him a coffee table, so… tough (he cleaned out my garage so I could sand and paint it, so we both won, ha!).
I finished the rest of the table in the garage. The item is hefty.
Because some edges were rounded and some debris was twisted, I filled up larger gaps or knots with wood filler. If you know about better wood filler, I’d love to hear from you in the comments section. So far, I’ve tried a lot of wood fillers, and I’ve been getting a lot of conflicting advice, so I’m thinking it might be time to put them head-to-head in a head-to-head comparative review.
I sanded the whole piece with finer and finer grit sandpaper on my sander (80, 180, 240) then to round off outside edge of the table, use a router. I used 80-grit sandpaper to produce the rounded edges in the completed photographs.
I used satin polyurethane and golden mahogany stain, sanding between layers. Then back into the living room!
Before it grew dark, my dog Charlie was quite interested. I made her a model in several of my photographs.