Folding table from cedar fencing

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Project by dbray45 posted 03-04-2011 02:26 PM 4438 views 6 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

The wood for this table was from some cedar fencing that a neighbor gave me. I made it to be an outdoor table and not a dining room table kind of nice. The boards are not planed on the bottom to give it a rustic flavor and all of the boards are tong and grooved. The legs are cedar 2×4s, planed down a bit, flattend and squared. The table has spar varnish is it should take a while to turn gray. The boards were 3/4 when I started so they are closer to 5/8” after cleaning up so the middle got a cross piece underneath to keep from bowing. All screws are Stainless steel. This is the same way I make the smaller folding tables.

Hope you like it.

-- David in Damascus, MD

16 comments so far

View workerinwood's profile


2717 posts in 3302 days

#1 posted 03-04-2011 03:02 PM

Great job!! Nice looking table.

-- Jack, Albuquerque

View LesIsMore's profile


10 posts in 2892 days

#2 posted 03-04-2011 03:50 PM

Perfect outdoor table, and great use of reclaimed wood. I have an old cedar fence to replace… table maybe?

View MasterSergeant's profile


1373 posts in 2923 days

#3 posted 03-04-2011 04:30 PM

Great looking table, I have just the patio that will look perfect on :-D

-- Kelly, woodworker under construction

View RandyMorter's profile


228 posts in 2925 days

#4 posted 03-04-2011 04:37 PM


-- Randy Morter, Phoenix, AZ

View dbray45's profile


3320 posts in 3012 days

#5 posted 03-04-2011 08:06 PM

A couple of things to note – This cedar soaks up finish, I used a whole quart on this table and yes I did give the under side a coat as well. We get these burrowing bees that look like bumble bees and even though they will burrow through the poly, they prefer it less than if untreated.

Second, the cedar is very soft wood.

-- David in Damascus, MD

View GabrielX's profile


231 posts in 3066 days

#6 posted 03-04-2011 10:56 PM

Good going, man!! That is an admirable re-use of materials.

-- GX

View RPKnikker's profile


64 posts in 2878 days

#7 posted 03-05-2011 12:18 AM

This is awsome! This thing you have buy in a shop do you?
Ha ha looks good and hope you will make more thinks like these!

succes with your next project!

-- Register at my website if you're interested in my projects... It's FREE!

View Wes Giesbrecht's profile

Wes Giesbrecht

155 posts in 3046 days

#8 posted 03-05-2011 01:41 AM

Very nice.

Did you allow for wood movement of the top versus the end boards?
Poly or not, it will expand and contract.

-- Wes Giesbrecht

View Roger Clark aka Rex's profile

Roger Clark aka Rex

6940 posts in 3670 days

#9 posted 03-05-2011 02:55 AM

Excellent, great use of re-claimed materials. Well done.

-- Roger-R, Republic of Texas. "Always look on the Bright Side of Life" - An eyeball to eyeball confrontation with a blind person is as complete waste of Time.

View Sodabowski's profile


2385 posts in 3068 days

#10 posted 03-05-2011 03:39 AM

Ha! Done that a few weeks ago, but with a pallet. Love your result :)

-- Thomas - Pondering the inclusion of woodworking into physics and chemistry classes...

View dbray45's profile


3320 posts in 3012 days

#11 posted 03-06-2011 12:31 AM


Yes, about 2” of glue on each end, Tong and groove the entire length. Poly Spar – oil based for out door and UV.

Pallets are good too.

-- David in Damascus, MD

View Wes Giesbrecht's profile

Wes Giesbrecht

155 posts in 3046 days

#12 posted 03-06-2011 08:28 AM

Well it should be okay if it contracts but what happens if it expands?

-- Wes Giesbrecht

View mafe's profile


11771 posts in 3324 days

#13 posted 03-07-2011 01:17 AM

Really nice.
Well done, and yes recycle makes me smile.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View dbray45's profile


3320 posts in 3012 days

#14 posted 03-07-2011 02:35 PM


If it splits, I know this guy that made it, he can fix it – LOL. The MC was at 10% and was brought in from outdoors. Sat outside all winter. I expect it to shrink some but unless they put it under water, shouldn’t get worse.

-- David in Damascus, MD

View Wes Giesbrecht's profile

Wes Giesbrecht

155 posts in 3046 days

#15 posted 03-07-2011 11:37 PM


Sometimes it’s hard to broach a subject without coming across as a know-it-all.
Trust me, that’s not my intention.
I taught joinery at a local college for awhile and my biggest complaint with the course material was that it didn’t pay nearly enough attention to the subject of wood movement. It’s a huge issue that must always be in the forefront of planning a project.
The way to attach a breadboard end is to glue it, if at all, only in the center so that the panel can expand and contract with the seasonal humidity changes. And it will, even if it has 3 coats of varnish on both sides.
Alternatively, or additionally it can be fastened with screws thru slots that are slightly elongated or some other device from underneath that will allow movement.
A small point on this subject. In the winter when it’s pouring rain and cold outside, the relative humidity may well be lower than it is in the summer on clear hot day.

-- Wes Giesbrecht

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