Designing a tall table based on a Haverty's piece

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Forum topic by jbswearingen posted 07-21-2014 04:43 PM 956 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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108 posts in 2188 days

07-21-2014 04:43 PM

Hey folks, it’s been a long time. I haven’t built anything in two years and am jumping back in with my most ambitious project yet—designing and building a counter-height table, side board (server?) and matching chairs.

The inspiration comes from a visit to Haverty’s with the missus two weekends ago. She wants a taller table (oddly enough, she’s only 4’11”), but more importantly, wants a drop leaf, as a full sized table take up too much space that is wasted with our four person family.

The piece at Haverty’s is, well, over priced, to say the least. Add to that crappy construction, and you have the makings of the missus being persuaded to let me build it.

Here’s the original:

And the side board:

I just learned to use Sketchup Make 2014 this past weekend. It’s amazing. I’ve never designed anything before because I just didn’t know how to. Sketchup makes it idiot proof. And I’m a pretty big idiot.

Here’s what I came up with after about an hour last night.

The original uses dovetailed sliders to support the wings. I intend on rotating supports. See the little long pieces on the tops of the aprons? They’ll pivot about 4” from one end out under the wing with it’s extended, holding them up. I haven’t yet figured out how to secure them under the table when collapsed.

In the original picture, there’s a bit of accent trim on the upper parts of the legs. I intend to route grooves into the legs and gluing in contrasting raised strips, probably walnut. On the table top, I’ll probably put in walnut butterfly inlays on the mitered corners for support and contrast.

The center is a 20” Lazy Susan made from polished granite. The bottoms of the legs will get small chamfers. The table top pieces are 7/8” thick, the legs are 2.5” square, and the rest is 3/4” stock.

Any ideas or suggestions as I go along? I’ll be buying the lumber this weekend.

-- Semper fi, Brad

4 replies so far

View Aj2's profile


1442 posts in 1826 days

#1 posted 07-21-2014 05:24 PM

Hello Mr, JBS I haven’t used sketch up and I know a lot of people like for Cabinets.
When I build a style of furniture for the first time I use a inexpensive wood like popler and what ever leftover I have.
I know it sound like too much trouble and time but you can avoid a lot of mistakes and work some of the proportions that make not look good in real life.
You don’t have to take it to the end but a mock up can fine tune a build that you can do on the computer.
Good luck Aj

-- Aj

View BinghamtonEd's profile


2298 posts in 2398 days

#2 posted 07-21-2014 05:54 PM

Brad, Tommy Mac just did an episode with a table that had collapsing sides like that. They had pull out extensions that looked clever but not too difficult to make. Might be worth looking into, if you didn’t catch it. How does the center portion of the top secure to the base, it doesn’t look like the supports leave much wood on the aprons to attach to. The sliding dovetails shouldn’t be too difficult to pull off, since they don’t have to be perfectly executed to be completely functional in this case.

Is the missus set on the small storage cabinet under the table? I’d be wanting to put my feet up on the horizontal piece there if the box wasn’t there, and with the extensions down, are you going to be hitting your shins on it? Seems somewhat awkward to use for storage, and something else to get in the way of your legs.

Are you using thick stock or making the legs out of thinner material? Locking miter would be good here, and get you face grain on all sides.

P.S. Unrelated note, Brad, the SV is going up for sale soon. Sad to see her go.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View jbswearingen's profile


108 posts in 2188 days

#3 posted 07-21-2014 06:26 PM


To get any real use out of a mockup I’d have to build it almost completely—I’m building from a known, tested model and I know a person that owns this table, so I can go to them if I need to.

I’ll keep that in mind later, though, when I design something from scratch. Thanks. I hadn’t thought of it.


The wings are only 9 11/16” deep AND they’re supported under the table; they fold backwards and are against the top portion—no knees hitting them.

For attaching the top to the base I planned on using some neat little figure-8 pieces. One side screws to the apron and the other to the top. They’re designed to slide a bit to allow for seasonal movement. Two per apron should provide plenty of strength, I think.

I’m still contemplating the method of supporting the wings when extended.

The legs are 2.5” square; I’ll make them from solid 3” stock.

This is a tall table; around 40” high. The chairs that I’ll build will have foot rests built into them.

I tried to sell my SV a while back, but the missus vetoed it. I never ride anymore; that was my reasoning. She says, “Screw that. You love it too much.” My Harley chopper project is FINALLY running as of the beginning of this month. Looks like I’ll be getting a new Concours 1400 next summer or the following.

-- Semper fi, Brad

View Aj2's profile


1442 posts in 1826 days

#4 posted 07-21-2014 08:35 PM

That’s tru if you have acess to the piece already built then the mock up isn’t needed.Looks like a fun project.
Hope everything goes well and safe.Aj

-- Aj

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