Instructables
Picture of Redwood Coffee Table

This instructable will teach you how to make a end-grain redwood coffee table with steel legs. The steps provided will be applicable for re-creating the above table, but can also serve as a template to let you customize and make your own design.

 
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Step 1: Buying & Cutting the Wood

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At my local hardware store they sell lots of wood beams. These beams come in many different sizes and wood-types. When selecting a wood to purchase - I took a look at the color of the wood as well as how the end-grains looked. I found a redwood that I thought was particular beautiful and came in beams that were sized: 1"1/2 x 5"1/2 x 108". I bought several beams and cut them into 3 inch blocks. Each brick or "block" was 3" x 1"1/2 x 5"1/2. I cut about 250 of these from the beams I purchased.

Step 2: Gluing the Wood

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I placed the wood bricks on my floor to figure out how big I wanted the surface to be in relation to my sofa. Once decided I began gluing bricks together by clamping them with wood clamps and ribbon cables. It was a slow tedious process to glue each brick together. Since I only own about 8 wood clamps and one ribbon cable - I glued 3-5 bricks together every day. Waiting one day between each new gluing session. I started gluing from the center and moved outward (in a diamond formation), to ensure each wood piece could be as close together as possible. Gluing rows wouldn't work since they not be perfectly flat and thus would cause larger gaps in the tables surface. The brand of glue I used was Titebond III - Ultimate Wood Glue.

michaelgc29 days ago

Looks beautiful, I have been looking up different coffee tables and this one is nice

Great work. Thank you.

What kind of glue did you use?

rtilton1 (author)  Ricardo Furioso2 months ago

Thanks! :) Titebond III - ultimate wood glue.

danzo3214 months ago

I must be nice soo.. You don't name your wood glue, what kind is black/purple? How did you decide it should be 3.5" thick? Why did you decide to make the legs of steel cubes in yellow? So many design decisions that ought to have some depth of reasoning.. Lovely surface!

rtilton1 (author)  danzo3212 months ago

The wood glue I used was Titebond III - ultimate wood glue (although any wood glue should do). I chose 3.5" thick because I thought it would compliment the rest of the furniture I had in my house. I didn't want it to be too thin as it wouldn't have as strong of a presence. Regarding the color of the legs - I knew I wanted a hot saturated color. Was contemplating over red, orange and yellow and when I saw this yellow powder coat color - I had to have it!

azwebco4 months ago

Super cool, is the surface smooth after waxing? I was thinking this might make an awesome kitchen island top but maybe I'll need to use some sort of poly on it to protect it more than the wax. Are the pieces really flush at the ends? I basically have the same collection of wood clamps you do maybe 10-12 in total plus 2-3 long wooden handled clams that have both a slide and a screw action to make them tighter so I'll have to mirror your patience. I'm thinking this will take a couple weeks at least.

rtilton1 (author)  azwebco2 months ago

Yep! It's smooth after waxing. I used a chopsaw on the ends to ensure they're smooth and I did a lot of sanding on the tables surface. Definitely time consuming though.

glou4 months ago

Great idea... and if you ever need a dining table all you have to do is build taller leg boxes. I too love the color and respect your levels of patience. A smaller, lighter cutting board is in my future. Good Job.

joelwashing4 months ago

Masterfully done! I love it.

rwilson334 months ago

I really like your table's top, looks really good. Gave me an idea for making a cutting board as well

Lindie4 months ago

Beautiful top!

wilgubeast4 months ago

I am very impressed with the patience you demonstrated throughout this process, but particularly in the glue-up and staining portions. Nice work, and well-deserving of a feature.

seamster4 months ago

Very nice! I bet that end grain soaked up the oil like a sponge.

rtilton1 (author)  seamster4 months ago

Thanks! Yes - the wood really did soak up the oil like a sponge. Applied half the tin of Tung oil on it.

witkowski84 months ago

Nice idea

I just love the color!