Step 2: Groovin'

For maximum strength, I routed some grooves that allowed the legs to notch into the top and vice versa.  This eliminates some of the weaker end-grain mechanical connections in the previous design, provides a cleaner finished appearance, and minimizes the number of store-bought fasteners needed.  These joints are very simple, and, if built tightly, extremely strong.  

I used a plunge router with flush-trim bit.  This type of bit has a smooth piece at the top of it, the same diameter as the cutting part of the bit, that acts as a guide.  By clamping some scrap lumber to your workpiece, you can create an extremely precise template.

Find the center of your top, then measure 18" off of the centerline to either side.  Now measure a further 1-1/2" to each side.  This will be the width of the notch that accepts the legs.  Line up a piece of 1/2"-thick scrap on either side of your future groove.  Screw or clamp down to the workpiece.  Set the depth of the router to cut roughly halfway through the depth of the workpiece.  Turn it on and draw it toward you in slow, even strokes, making sure the smooth part of the bit is riding tight to your guide board.  Once done, sand out any router marks in the groove to even it up.

If you don't have a router, you can use a circular saw to do the same thing, albeit a little less cleanly.  Set the depth of the blade down to 3/4" and make a series of passes with the saw right next to one another between your marks.  Break out the chips and clean up with a chisel and sandpaper.
This is a great project and one I've been working on as well. <br><br>Here's my solution to the lag-bolt counterbore problem: I used a 3/4&quot; speedbore spade bit for the hole, and drilled it to 1/4&quot;. Insert the lagbolt with glue in the dadoes, and tighten up the lags . THEN I used the end of a broomstick I had hanging around for a plug. Sawed it off with a dozuki, though a regular saw would work if you were careful, and sanded it flush. Looks great too. When I did it on a smaller scale to build a stepstool, people ask me if I put the whole thing together with pins. I'll see if I can post a pic.<br><br>I love the look of finished old red pine. Beautiful with a coat of linseed oil.
<strong>MJursic:</strong> Do you mind posting a picture of this which you just described?<br> Thanks!
These are very cool.
Nice. However in a nation where if the users aren't a lard butt they may be 6' + tall who may be heavy even if they are trim, I'd move the 2x4 down lower to make a proper leg stretcher. I'd probably make the leg to seat connection stronger as well.
In may seem counter-intuitive, but keep the stretcher where it is! If you move it down, you'll just create a big parallelogram that will collapse when anyone sits on it, lard butt or no. Trust me, you could drive a Mack truck onto these things just as they are.
Where do you find this bit? I only ever see them with the bearing on the end.
looks like a great project for just about anyone looks real ez to do way to go anything to get people wood working is awesome !
I did typo that, didn't I? Perhaps I have an aversion to lice. Lol<br>
Love the design. Your grooves are not grooves by the way. They are dados. I know I'm knit picking.
Nitpicking, not knit picking, to nitpick ;) The author know they are dados, must be keeping the terminology simple for noob wood workers?
this looks like the perfect idea for the wood lying around in our shed... Thanks for that great instruction!
really like that

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Bio: Furniture hacker. Author of Guerilla Furniture Design, out now. Find me on Twitter and Instagram @objectguerilla.
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