Porringer Coffee Table w/ offset turned legs

  • Advertise with us
Project by Ben posted 12-27-2012 11:12 PM 1727 views 2 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hi All,
Just wanted to share this fun little project.
I built this as a wedding gift for my friends. It was built in great haste in the afternoons and evenings after my regular work

One of the funnest, most rewarding things about this was learning how to turn offset tapered legs with pad feet. There are two center points on each end, mathematically spaced to have the “node” (the part where the turning begins) spin true. So most of the leg is turned on the diagonally opposite offset points, pretty much only the foot is turned on true centers.

Species is Sapele legs/apron with Birdseye Maple top. I played around with the corner detail on MDF scraps until it looked right, then used that as a template to jigsaw it out.
Lots of time spent sanding the top. I found the BEM very challenging to work with and couldn’t get a clean line off the jointer.

Finish is tung oil and wipe-on poly.

Simple mortise and tenon construction at the apron to leg joint. Top is attached with figure 8s.

Thanks for looking.

9 comments so far

View bhog's profile


2230 posts in 1781 days

#1 posted 12-28-2012 12:37 AM

Nice table Ben.Offset turning is something on my bucket list.

-- I don't drive a Prius.

View Scott Oldre's profile

Scott Oldre

551 posts in 2522 days

#2 posted 12-28-2012 12:56 AM

inspiring post. I have 8 table legs finally mortised with router, and now I know what to do with the bottom half of the legs. Thanks for posting. Wish I had that LONG chisel rest.

-- Scott, Irmo SC

View Monte Pittman's profile (online now)

Monte Pittman

18621 posts in 1429 days

#3 posted 12-28-2012 02:08 AM

Very nice work on this table

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View a1Jim's profile


113833 posts in 2668 days

#4 posted 12-28-2012 02:28 AM

Kind of fun doing off set turnings,good job.

-- Custom furniture

View Mip's profile


372 posts in 1169 days

#5 posted 12-28-2012 02:50 AM

Cool looking table. Wish I had that long tool rest, too.

View BusterB's profile


1738 posts in 1099 days

#6 posted 12-29-2012 04:51 PM

Really nice table Ben…

-- Buster, Ocoee TN (Critics are men who watch a battle from a high place then come down and shoot the survivors - Hemingway)

View JamesVavra's profile


294 posts in 2406 days

#7 posted 01-02-2013 05:52 PM

Nice legs – can you share the equation for calculating the offsets?

View Ben's profile


209 posts in 1948 days

#8 posted 01-07-2013 02:28 AM

Thanks for the comments guys.
JamesVavra: Sorry to take so long. Here is the source I used for the offset calculations.
It’s a good article, but I was confused by a few things, namely the seemingly arbitrary ankle diameter he defines.
I used the same 3/4”. Not sure what would happen if you changed it.

Good luck!

View JamesVavra's profile


294 posts in 2406 days

#9 posted 01-07-2013 01:29 PM

Thanks for the link – it looks like the distance between the outside of the top and the offset center make the maximum radius of the ankle. You could turn the ankle smaller, but it can’t be bigger.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics