COFFEE TABLE MATERIALS
• Two 2×4 8-foot Douglas fir framing studs • Miter saw or circular saw
• Wood glue
• 16 #8×2½-inch wood screws
• ½-inch and 7/64-inch wood drill bits
• Orbital palm sander
• 120-grit sandpaper
• ½×36-inch round wood dowel
• Matte black spray paint
• Danish oil (we used Watco in dark walnut)
• Latex gloves
• Eight 3½-inch flat corner braces
• Four 3/8-inch self-adhesive vinyl bumpers
• 1/8×32×38-inch tempered glass sheet with rounded corners
Step 1 Cut the following pieces from the studs: four legs (13¾ inches long), two long stretchers (27¾ inches), two short stretchers (23½ inches), one long spacer block (8¾ inches), one short spacer block (7 inches).
Step 2 Using two legs and two long stretchers, create two L shapes measuring 27¾×17¼ inches. Using two legs and two short stretchers, create two L shapes that measure 23½×17¼ inches. Glue and clamp each L so the outside edges are flush and the inside angle is square (A).
Step 3 Reinforce each L assembly with 2½-inch wood screws, which later will be covered by pieces of dowel.
Drill holes for the dowel plugs with the ½-inch drill bit. Center the holes on the outside edge of the glued joint. Measure and mark 7/8 inch and 23/8 inch in from the outside edge. Drill 3/8-inch deep holes at the marked spots (B). TIP: Wrap painters tape 3/8 inch from the tip of the drill bit so you don’t drill too deep. Using the 7/64-inch bit, drill pilot holes through the center of these holes. Keep your drill bit as straight as possible. Drive 2½-inch screws through the pilot holes. Repeat on all L assemblies.
Step 4 Attach the four Ls to each other using the spacer blocks to ensure they are evenly inset. Clamp the long spacer block to one long L with two clamps, making sure the block covers the joint and all edges are flush. Add glue to the end of a short L. Clamp the short L against the end of the spacer block with one clamp with the glue against the long L (C). Remove spacer blocks and clamps once glue is dry. Repeat instructions from Step 3—drill plug holes, pilot holes, and drive screws— to secure the glued joint where the short L meets the long L. Repeat with the remaining two legs and the short spacer block, reversing the long and short Ls, starting with the spacer block clamped to the short L and adding the long L to the short L. Repeat to join the two assemblies (D). Sand all surfaces and joints smooth.
Step 5 Cut ¼-inch-long plugs from the dowel. You will need 16. Spray-paint one end of each black, and let dry. Dab a small amount of glue on the unpainted end of the dowel and twist into the hole. Gently tap the dowels flush using a hammer and scrap piece of wood (E). Be careful to not set the dowel deeper than the surface. Repeat for all screw holes.
Step 6 Wipe a coat of Danish oil onto the entire table base. Allow to dry for 5 minutes, and then wipe off anywhere the oil pooled. Repeat. Paint the corner L braces and their screws black, and let dry. Attach the braces on both sides of the leg joints on each L. Flip the assembly over, place bumper pads on the top of the leg assembly, and add the glass top.