When a table gets wobbly, you can repair or replace a leg on a flat tabletop to add stability without using braces that protrude underneath the table top. To make this repair, you need to use a plywood plate. Start by screwing a flat piece of plywood to the top of the leg first. Then you can screw through the plywood plate into the tabletop.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Wood glue
- Plywood, 6 inches by 12 inches by 3/4 inch
- Pin nailer
- 1 pin nail, 1/4 inch
- Cordless screw gun
- 4 wood screws, 2 inches
- Mitre saw
- 1 piece poplar, 12 inches by 3/4 inch by 3/4 inch
Stand the table leg upright. Smear the top end of the leg with wood glue. Center the plywood on top of the leg. Shoot two pin nails with the pin nailer down through the plywood into the leg, securing the plywood to the top of the leg. Using the screw gun, screw down through the plywood into the top of the leg using two 2-inch wood screws. If your leg is wide enough on top, use two more screws.
Flip the leg upside down and stand it upright on the plywood. Cut four pieces of the 3/4-inch poplar at 45 degrees with a mitre saw so that the short point to short point of the mitred edge is the same size as the square dimension of the table leg.
Spread wood glue on two sides of all four pieces of the mitred 3/4-inch poplar and lay them around the perimeter of the table leg where it joins the plywood. Nail on all four pieces with the pin nailer creating a frame around the table leg to further brace the leg.
Turn the tabletop upside down. Pick up the table-leg plywood assembly, place wood glue on the bottom of the plywood and place it on the table where you want the leg attached.
Screw down through the plywood with the screw gun into the bottom of the tabletop using six 1 1/4-inch wood screws.
Tips and warnings
- The plywood can be trimmed on a band saw or using a jigsaw to fit tight into the tabletop corner if needed. All four legs can be attached this way.
- Always wear safety glasses when working with wood.
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