Introduction: DIY Concrete Top Coffee Table

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This Instructable is how to make a DIY Concrete Top Outdoor Coffee Table. The base is made from cedar 2x4's and the top was my first time working with concrete. You can also see the full blog post at: http://fixthisbuildthat.com/diy-concrete-top-outdo...

Tools Used (affiliate):

Materials Used:

Step 1: Cut the Parts to Size and Drill Pocket Holes

Cut all the table base parts with three 33” pieces for the aprons and lower stretcher, five 21” boards for the side top and bottom and center support, and four 16-½” boards for the legs.

Find the best side of each board and mark for pocket holes.

Drill pocket holes on the backside of all the parts except for the legs.

Step 2: Assemble the Base

Assemble the sides by joining the legs to the top and the bottom with glue and 2-1/2" exterior pocket screws.

Flip the side assemblies on edge and connect them with an apron with glue and screws.

Flip the table base back over and Install a center support to help with the weight of the concrete. Position it between the aprons then secure it with glue and screws as well.

Apply your choice of finish to the base (I used an outdoor spar urethane) and let it dry while you work on the concrete.

Step 3: Make the Concrete Form

Cut a melamine sheet to 30” wide by 48” long. Use the offcut to get two long sides at 1-1/2" wide and the full 48” long.

Crosscut the 30x48 piece down to 30” by 44” and use the offcut and rip down two pieces to 1-1/2" by 30”.

Place the table base on the form and secure the long sides on edge using 2" countersunk screws. Cut the short sides to fit and install them the same way.

Vacuum out the form and caulk the seams with a silicone caulk. Put tape over all the screw heads so concrete won't get in them.

Cut rebar mesh for support for the concrete top. Use bolt cutters and trim it about 1" in from all the sides. Lastly, clean up the form with some rubbing alcohol to get any residue off the surface.

Step 4: Mix and Pour the Concrete

I used a countertop mix concrete and mixed it per the bag instructions. Fill the form and work the concrete around to about 1” thick.

Then press the rebar mesh into the concrete.

Use a straight piece of wood to screed the surface flat. Ride the board along the top of the form in a sawing motion and this levels and distributes the concrete.

Use a reciprocating saw (no blade installed), sander, or something similar and vibrate around the form to help release air bubbles.

Trowel the bottom surface smooth so it will sit flush on the base. Then cover the form with plastic and let it cure.

Step 5: Prep the Finished Top

After the concrete has cured, remove the concrete from the form and sand the top with 120 grit then 220 grit sandpaper. Mix a slurry of portland cement or just the concrete mix to a toothpaste consistency and fill in all the air pockets on the sides and top. When dry repeat the sanding process.

Apply concrete sealer per manufacturer’s recommendation with a microfiber cloth. You may need to wait up to 30 days to do this depending on your sealer.

Step 6: Install the Top on the Base

Install rubber feet on the bottom of the base to keep the wood away from standing water.

Put a dollop of silicone on at several spots on the top to keep the top from shifting then place the top on the base. I used the long sides of the form as spacers when installing the top so we didn’t pinch our fingers.

If you liked the video please subscribe to my YouTube channel!

And if you want full detailed plans and 3D drawings you can get them here: http://fixthisbuildthat.com/diy-concrete-top-outdoor-coffee-table-plans/

And if you feel like I've earned it I'd appreciate a vote for the Tables and Desks contest, just hit the "Vote!" button on top right.

Comments

author
ksoem (author)2016-11-27

Great job.
My question is,
Is the concrete construction grade ?

author
Ifmertes (author)2016-11-24

Looks great and great video.

Roughly, how much does it weigh? 125-150 pounds?

author
maint1 (author)2016-11-23

I've seen commercially ground & polished concrete floors before, that were just mesmerizingly beautiful. The quality of your finished top was most impressive, smooth & clear. Great idea, BTW, using that cement slurry to "fill the pores" of your casting. Ah, there's SO many possibilities for embellishing concrete; using two or more differently tinted concretes for marbling, surface stamping, acid staining, embedding aggregates or glass. Most of us don't have the hundred$ or thousand$ for commercial stone tables or countertops. Besides, real cut stone is not actually DIY friendly in the first place, is it? :) Thanks for the inspiration & tech tips Bro. Think I'll try a small table first, before I tackle that kitchen counter :)

author
47miky (author)2016-11-23

Great Idea!! I've wanted to do a countertop or such with concrete, so this is great cuz I need a outdoor coffee table and matching end tables, so this is a great idea, one I can't wait to use. I was thinking of adding colouring to the concrete to make it even more special. So I have to say I also like Wild-Bill's idea of putting coloring into the concrete and using contrasting aggregate and using diamond pads and a grinder to finish it up. I think I'm going to try it. I hope it works and becomes a beautiful addition to my yard and lawn furniture. Thanks!!

author
fixthisbuildthat (author)47miky2016-11-23

Sounds awesome! I'd love to see your results.

author
JasonH288 (author)2016-11-22

Great tutorial. I've been wanting to pour my own concrete surface for a while. Is it difficult to separate the concrete from the melamine?

author

There is a little surface tension, but I wouldn't say it was difficult. Took a couple minutes but no big deal.

author
Wild-Bill (author)2016-11-22

Ya, concrete is fun to play with. Nice job. It makes great garden furniture, as no one is going to run off with it. Except that it is a lot of work, colouring the concrete and adding some contrasting aggregate and then polishing it to a gloss with diamond pads with a variable speed grinder can make your project look super cool. My only real complaint about working with concrete is that it is so heavy even when only working with a cubic foot at a time.

author

Yeah, totally agree. I was already tired just moving the bags around :) I love the idea of wet polishing and adding some aggregate or glass. Might try that in a future project.

author
bibbster (author)2016-11-22

Nice job! As a note, if you have one, a wheelbarrow can be used to mix concrete in as well.

author

Oh yeah, a wheelbarrow would have been way better. You could wheel it right to where you need it.

author
Mihsin (author)2016-11-23

I appreciate the work you've done. However, I would go to the next quarry and order either a slab of sheet rock or granit for my table top. Best regards.

author
fixthisbuildthat (author)Mihsin2016-11-23

Sure, if you want to spend several hundred dollars vs. several tens of dollars then that would make a lot of sense. Thanks!

author
Nematic! (author)2016-11-19

next 10 generation don't need new table :p

author

Hahaha, yup! Like a tank.

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