How to Make a Gateleg Craft Table

Written by phillip woolgar
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How to Make a Gateleg Craft Table
Gateleg tables use space efficiently. (table of dessert pie on white table image by Paul Retherford from Fotolia.com)

Gateleg tables provide an effective way to get the table space you need without taking up space when the table isn't in use. Its foldable wings allow this table to stretch to three times its length when the flaps are up. The table is common for craft rooms, but it can be put to use also as a dinner table, for example. The table`s legs are usually supported by stretchers, which are adjustable legs.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Wood glue
  • Glue gun
  • Hinges
  • Protractors
  • Banding strips
  • Pencil
  • 60 inches by 40 inches of wood
  • Wood screws
  • Table saw
  • Circular saw
  • Sandpaper
  • Table swings

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Choose the hardwood for your table­. Note that woods that are lighter in colour make the table look delicate. A standard size is 60 inches long by 42 inches wide.

  2. 2

    Use your pencil to outline your table top on the wood. You can make it with 90-degree or oval edges.

  3. 3

    Cut the top of your table with a circular saw. You could also use a table saw. Repeat this process for two additional tops, which will be your leaves. If you are making an oval table, draw a circle, then cut it in half, one for each end. Together, the three pieces should equal 60 inches long.

  4. 4

    Finish the ends of the table top by adding wood banding strips. Adhere them and curve them to the appropriate shape. Use a glue gun to apply hot wood glue. You can use a hair drying to speed the drying process. Trim the edges of the strips to meet the appropriate size. You will need about 17 feet of banding strip.

  5. 5

    Buy six pre-made legs from a home improvement store or make your own. Remember to keep the legs in proportion to the size of the table, about three feet each is appropriate for a standard table. Ensure you use the same wood type as the table top. The legs must be at least two inches thick to avoid breaking. Straight legs are best for a simple gateleg table. Smooth the edges of the table legs with sandpaper. Ensure all legs are the same size.

  6. 6

    Cut a table base out of the wood. This is optional, but you want it to be the same size as the middle top piece of your table. Use wood screws to bold the base into the legs, about halfway down.

  7. 7

    Cut front, back and swing rails. Each is equal to the length of each wing. Attach each swing rail underneath the middle table. Swing rails can be purchased at a home improvement store. Attach each of the legs to the front and back of your rails, about one inch in from each end of your table. Apply wood glue for extra strength. Ensure the legs are flush with the rail ends.

  8. 8

    Assemble the table with a set of swing hinges. Secure the hinges to the open swing ends. Make any adjustments as needed.

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