|Project by JEFFRPA||posted 12-17-2014 02:32 AM||2530 views||11 times favorited||15 comments|
I have been blessed with some great in-laws and when they asked me to make them a dining room table out of a tree from their front yard I really could not say no. The trees were actually 2 poplar trees that they had planted when they moved into the house over 35 years ago. They left the design to me but had very, very specific design elements and dimensions that they wanted in it. They wanted it big enough to seat the entire family for holiday meals (16) and it had to have benches that slid completely under the table as to not take up floor space. The biggest challenge was they wanted the leaves to be stored in the table. I did not want to split the top like a traditional extension table to store the leaves in the center so this is what my Dad and I came up with. I tossed around the idea of butterfly leaves, but the top is 2 1/4 inches thick and would have taken up too much room under the table. The leaves sit inside drawers with folding fronts. The drawers sit inside a tray that is attached to the apron that is attached to the legs as well as the table top. The drawers then slide out and catch on wedges mounted to the underside of the table top. The leaves then sit on the drawer runners and attach to the table using draw clasps.
The top is made from 4 boards splined together with breadboard ends. The good folks at McFarland's Mill in Winchester, VA have a large enough surface sander to get the top perfectly flat which made my life so much easier.
Legs are oak beams from my grandfather-in-law’s farm and the runners for the drawers that hold up and store the leaves are from a maple tree that was in their back yard.
I learned a ton with this project and am glad to have it finally done and out of my shop. It is humbling to know they trusted me enough to build something for them that will be a focal point in their kitchen for many years.