Gateleg Table

A dropleaf table for the parlour

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I needed a table in my front parlour big enough to seat six people for my weekly game night, but small enough to scoot out of the way for cocktail parties. After drooling over a gateleg table in Ikea (and some brainstorming), I decided to use a pair of prefab butcher blocks from the home centre and build a Stickley-inspired frame to hold them up.

The basis for this design is a Stickley 552 Gateleg table. However, after touring a local antiques store (packed full of gateleg tables, who knew they were so popular!), the decision was made to redesign the table to remove the 'humped' stretcher, and notch the leg and the bottom stretcher for a flush-mounted joinery.

While doing layout, and failing to find the butcherblock panels in the kitchen department at the local home centre, the design was further refined for ease of construction, using dimensional lumber as an edge on a plywood panel, rather than doing a lot of glue-up.

Switching the whole thing to dimensional lumber and plywood will require cutting a dado groove into a plywood panel, but with small enough leaves, the individual work shouldn't be too hard.

  • 1 × Table Saw
  • 1 × Chop Saw
  • 6 × 2x4 Pine Lumber Douglas Fir, 6ft
  • 3 × 1x2 Pine Lumber Douglas Fir, 8ft
  • 1 × B/C Plywood Douglas Fir, full sheet

  • Cutting Time

    Geoff Nicholson02/20/2015 at 19:51 0 comments

    Using the tools at my local hackerspace, I used my circular saw to do the rough cuts out of the full sheet of plywood, then evened them up on the tablesaw. Then I used the chopsaw to cut the 2x4s and 1x2s into shorter pieces.

    The idea is to rip the 1x2s in half (so the resultant bands will be 1-5/8 wide, because dimensional lumber lies) then cutting a tongue into them with a dado-blade in the tablesaw.

    The 2x4s are cut to a height of 30" for the legs; you need six of them, four for the base of the table and two for the swinging legs. The remaining 2x4s will be used for the stretchers and the like... and we'll get to measuring those later.

    Unfortunately, this was the time that the tablesaw at the lab popped it's belt, so it's offline and the project is on hold until we get the saw repaired.

  • Redesign!

    Geoff Nicholson02/20/2015 at 19:35 0 comments

    While doing layout design for the table project, and watching a lot of New Yankee Workshop videos on Youtube, it was decided to scrap the butcherblock part of the table, and instead use 1x2 sticks as edge-banding on a plywood tabletop. and a 'classic' table-size design (36x48 rectangular). Also, to save money on this first large-scale experiment, the decision was made to construct this out of pine.

    I went to the store and bought three 1x2s, six 2x4s, and a single-sheet of BC plywood, then headed down to Quelab to make the cuts.

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