Advice for joining 4x4s for a kitchen table

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Forum topic by Mfran12345 posted 09-26-2015 06:33 PM 1366 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1 post in 938 days

09-26-2015 06:33 PM

Topic tags/keywords: butt joints wood type

Hi I’m new to the forum and looking for some beginner advice. The wife wants me to build a table like this. The instructions I found online only use pocket screws to join everything together. I feel like that’s not strong enough joints for s table this big. All the pieces are 4×4 so they’re heavy. What does everyone think? What would be the best way to go about joining everything? I’m most worried about the angle pieces in the middle and the butt joints at the legs. Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I’m beginner but always willing to learn. Also what wood type would you recommend that won’t break the bank, kiln dried I assume but does species matter? I never build furniture so any tips would be appreciated. Thanks.

4 replies so far

View AlaskaGuy's profile (online now)


4044 posts in 2273 days

#1 posted 09-26-2015 07:03 PM

Dry lumber is a must in my view. Sharpen up your mortise and tenon skills and I hope you have a good jointer for straightening and squaring the 4×4’s.

Search Google for timber framing joints

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View jerryminer's profile


916 posts in 1406 days

#2 posted 09-26-2015 07:04 PM

You are wise to suspect pocket-screws to be a poor choice for joinery here!

The traditional (time-proven) approach would be mortise-and tenon joints.

Other reasonable options would include:

Dowel joints
“Loose” or “floating” tenons
Domino (manufactured version of “floating tenons”)

Almost any species can be used here, but finding dry 4×4 will probably limit your options, unless you want to glue-up from smaller dimension material. Top and base can be different species if you like.

-- Jerry, making sawdust professionally since 1976

View AlaskaGuy's profile (online now)


4044 posts in 2273 days

#3 posted 09-26-2015 07:04 PM

double post, deleted

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View bonesbr549's profile


1531 posts in 3031 days

#4 posted 09-26-2015 08:21 PM

POCKET SCREWS??????? Dang, that would end in disaster. Alaska guy steered you right. Since you say you are a beginner, I’d recommend Tag Frid’s Book on Joinery. Not just for this one, but for anything in the future. One of the good books out there.

-- Sooner or later Liberals run out of other people's money.

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