Tools & Materials
In this video, Ask This Old House general contractor Tom Silva and host Kevin O’Connor create a popular type of coffee table out of reclaimed oak wood.
1. Cut all of the boards to desired length using a miter saw.
2. Use a track saw to true up the edges of the 2×10 pieces, then rip the width on a table saw.
3. Using wood glue, glue three of the 2×10 pieces to form the tabletop.
4. Clamp the pieces together and wait an hour for the glue to set up.
5. After the glue has cured, remove the tabletop assembly from the clamps, and square up the edges of the tabletop using a track saw.
6. To measure for the length of the apron, place two leg pieces together at the edge of the tabletop. Lay out the long apron piece and mark where the excess comes over the edge of the tabletop.
7. Repeat the same step for the other three sides and trim marked apron pieces with a miter saw.
8. Use a pocket screw jig to drill slots on both edges of all four pieces of the apron.
9. Take two pieces of scrap wood from the tabletop and use them as a gauge block to set the height of the apron on the legs.
10. Use a clamp to secure everything and then attach the legs to the apron pieces using pocket screws.
11. Continue with this same process for the additional legs and apron pieces.
12. Place the assembly of apron and legs on the underside of the tabletop. Trace the edges of the legs and cut out those corners using a jigsaw.
13. Smooth over the edges of the tabletop using a router with a roundover bit.
14. Using a spade bit, drill into the apron pieces about half an inch deep and attach one side of the table top fasteners. This is done to allow the wood to expand and contract once the tabletop is attached.
15. Flip the leg/apron assembly on top of the facedown tabletop. You may have to pound the tabletop into the assembly using a hammer.
16. Attach the tabletop to the leg/apron assembly by inserting screws into the fasteners previously installed in the apron.
17. Sand the piece and finish with a Danish oil or a paste wax.