Help with possible table top issue

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Forum topic by Pousson posted 01-14-2015 06:38 PM 692 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 649 days

01-14-2015 06:38 PM

I am building my first table and have been very successful with the base and thought I was with the top as well. Since I am just getting into woodworking, I don’t have planers and I am using stock pine for this table.

The table top consists of 2 2×12 a 2×8 in the middle length wise with 2 2×8 breadboard caps.

the finished table should look something like this:

I have everything constructed and I noticed after my top glue up that the end cap bread boards are slightly angled downwards when the top is right side up. This creates a top that is somewhat ever so slightly tented when rested on the base. The side apron supports that are length wise under the table top have about a half inch gap. Since I have angled pocket holes underneath, you could potentially see the screws in the gap.

So the question is, Can I hand plane the table length wise past the bread boards to flatten the bottom out and make it sit flush or is this too much material and I will have to start over?

Any suggestions would be very appreciated.

6 replies so far

View AandCstyle's profile


2538 posts in 1677 days

#1 posted 01-15-2015 02:06 AM

Just a wild guess here, but if you have sanded the top, you might have taken a bit too much off the corners with the sander. If that is the case, you might be able to find a commercial shop in your area with a wide drum sander that would be willing to flatten the top for you for a slight fee. HTH

-- Art

View firefighterontheside's profile


13071 posts in 1276 days

#2 posted 01-15-2015 02:16 AM

How about cutting the posts off at the same angle as the top so that the top sits down on the aprons. Set the top on the base and scribe the legs and aprons. Another option is to create a mortise in the bottom of the top so that it sits down over the legs. These are just ways to save the top.
My last suggestion is to cut the breadboards off and do them over, still saving the biggest part of the top.
Good luck.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View Chris208's profile


235 posts in 1690 days

#3 posted 01-15-2015 02:27 AM

Did you use construction lumber?

Ana White needs to tell people about wood movement. This is the 10th table posted with this same problem.

View pintodeluxe's profile


4825 posts in 2233 days

#4 posted 01-15-2015 02:44 AM

Remove the screws and try clamping the tabletop down to the aprons. If clamps are successful at flattening the top, re-attach the top with the clamps still in place. I have seen mild crowns flatten out with this technique.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View Pousson's profile


2 posts in 649 days

#5 posted 01-15-2015 02:05 PM

Thanks for the suggestions. Some of these I never thought of. I am just learning so I now understand the expansion issue could be a problem. The table is going in my office and will be more of a desk than table so I am not too concerned by splitting or the such. I just wanted to start doing some woodworking. I really enjoyed it so I may invest more money in proper tools and wood and time in learning proper techniques.

View BinghamtonEd's profile


2263 posts in 1789 days

#6 posted 01-15-2015 02:18 PM

Is their any play in the breadboard ends? From your description it sounds like they are sagging? What about adding some supports or corbels on the outside of the legs to hold it up flush?

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

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