Introduction: Coffee Table (Industrial Cart)

Picture of Coffee Table (Industrial Cart)

The reason for this coffee table build is for a barter trade with one of my friends. Who happens to be a local artist and hosts art shows every so often. The barter trade consists of a coffee table for a painting. After talking to my friend and getting his input on characteristics that he would like the coffee table to have. He only had two requirements: an industrial look and just do your thing (whatever I wanted). I decided to go with an old industrial cart look made from old pallets. I figured this coffee table could double as storage for some of his art supplies. Then by adding wheels and a handle this coffee table turns into a makeshift suitcase while he goes to one of his art shows.


AdamH145 made it! (author)2016-07-26

Took your idea and ran with it. Top is made from flooring from 1908. Instead of bending flat bar, I used galvanized pipe that I spray painted. After searching the Internet for casters, I had my in-laws pick up some from Northern Tool as well. Only place I could find them. Thanks for the design!

TX_Engineer (author)AdamH1452016-07-26

That looks amazing! Great idea on using galvanised pipe, I never even thought about using that and it adds more character to the industrial look. The fact that you used old flooring for the build adds more to the cool factor of your coffee table. Thank you for sharing your pictures! I'm glad my instructable helped you out.

rsrivas1987 (author)2015-10-07

Hi. This is really awesome. Just wondering what do you mean by "back angle" when you say "I used a 0.75" radius on the bottom with a slight back angle"?

TX_Engineer (author)rsrivas19872015-10-08

Thank you rsrivas1987!

I had to use a 1.5-inch diameter spacer to bend the steel flatbar. Half of that diameter is 0.75 inches (radius). The radius is where you start to see the steel leg curve. Since I have to make the steel flatbar leg the same height as the caster/wheel, 9.5 inches in height. This means the steel flat bar will come straight down (vertically) 8.75 inches and then curve 0.75 inches (radius) to give you the height of 9.5 inches. Now, what I mean by slight back angle is this angle could vary/change depending on the distance/spacing of the steel legs that are mounted to the base of the coffee table. Just like a right angled triangle (a triangle with a 90-degree angle), if you change the length of your opposite face (the distance between each leg at the base of the coffee table when mounted) the angle (back angle in our situation) of your hypotenuse will change as well. The adjacent face/side distance would be 9.5 inches. I made the opposite face distance between the steel flatbar legs 7.0 inches, since I only had 7.5 inches of space to use on one side of the coffee table base (7.5 inches from base edge to one of the 1"x4"s cross supports). So if we assume the steel leg is a right angled triangle. Use 9.5 inches & 7.0 inches as the opposite & adjacent sides. Then apply Pythagoreon theorem to find out the hypotenuse (calculated: 11.8 inches). Then you can use law of sines formula to find out the angle of the hypotenuse(calculated: 36 degrees). This angle should only used as a reference dimension and not as a hard dimension. I had to adjust the steel leg mounting point distance (7.0 inches) by an eighth of an inch or so to get the coffee table completely level.

rsrivas1987 (author)TX_Engineer2015-10-09

Wow. Thanks for the awesome explanation. Just wondering, for the flat bar was the thickness 1/8 of an inch?

TX_Engineer (author)rsrivas19872015-10-09

You're welcome.

The steel flat bar I used is 1/4" thick. I highly recommend using 1/4" thick steel, because this coffee table does weigh a considerable amount. Also if you are like me?! I always put my legs/feet on the coffee table when I watch tv and with 1/4" steel you'll never have to worry about the added weight.

sosclosetsandfurniture (author)2015-09-30


Where did you find the castors you used? Nice Instructable!

Thank you!

I found those steel casters at Northern Tool.

We just got a Northern Tools about a year ago. I've been meaning to go roam around in there. (I'm in Texas too down in the RGV)

That's awesome, I was born and raised in Laredo and now I'm in Houston. But you really need to visit Northern Tools, that store is amazing! I bought my mig welder and a small welding table from there. They always have sales and good deals there.

flyingpuppy (author)2015-09-30

From palettes? Beautiful coffee table!! Thanks for this tutorial.

Girlfridayok (author)2015-09-29

I love that table, actually bought one similar on line ( I'm sure for much more $$ than you made it for!! Beautiful!

bcb10 (author)2015-09-28

Wow, that's beautiful. Also great write up too!

About This Instructable




Bio: Engineer who loves diy projects.
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