Introduction: 2x12 End Table With HDPE Knob

About: 18 - Senior - Maker

I got a 2x12 for free at Lowes a few weeks ago, it had to be cut in half in order to move it and was quite beat up. I didn’t know what to do with it but wanted to try something new and more challenging. I finally decided to make a small end table.

Step 1: Tools & Materials

Tools that I used:

  • Jobsite Table Saw
  • Miter Saw
  • Router
  • Sander
  • Hammer
  • Chisels
  • Lots of clamps
  • Planer
  • Drill Press
  • Tape Measure


  • A 2x12
  • Glue
  • Various screws

Step 2: Parts


  • Top - 20" x 20" x 1 3/8"
  • Legs 4x - 30" x 2" x 1 3/8"
  • Bottom Shelf - 16" x 16" x 1/2"
  • Slats 2x - 14" x 1 3/8" x 1/4"
  • Drawer Face - 13" x 6" x 3/4"
  • Drawer - 1' x 1' x 3"
  • Side Panels 2x - 14" x 8 1/2" x 1/2"
  • Back Panel - 13" x 8 1/2" x 3/8"
  • Supports 6x - 7" x 1 3/8" x 1/2"

Step 3: Table Top

The final dimensions of the table top will be 20" x 20" and around 1 1/3" thick.


Take your 2x12 and cut 2 20 1/8" long pieces. Then set your table saw fence 1/8" away from the blade and "cleanup" the edges of your boards, if you have a joiner use it instead. Rip those 2 boards down to 10 2" wide strips. If you would like to clean them up on the planer go head.


Lay the 10 strips out in a pattern that you like then set half of it aside. Glue half of your table top then do the other side. Make sure that you don't get glue in between the 2 halves or you won't be able to plane it.


Plane the 2 halves down to size and trim the edges on a miter saw, its important that both sides are the same length and thickness.

Connecting the 2 halves:

Glue & clamp the 2 halves together then clean up the seam with a chisel, hand planer, and/or some sandpaper.


Now you will need to create a "hole" in each corner for the legs to lock into. To do this use a router and some chisels. Each hole needs to be 2" long x 1 1/2" wide x 1/2" deep. The holes should go 1 1/2" away from the edge of the table top.

Step 4: Legs


Cut a 30" long board from the remaining wood and "cleanup" the edge of it. Then cut 4 2" wide strips on the table saw.


To create the notches I first just drilled holes with a drill press then chiseled it out but later found that it's easier to use a router. Refer to the plans above to know where to place the notches/holes and how big to make them.

Step 5: Bottom Platform


Cut a 18" chunk off of the 2x12 then "cleanup" the edge. Cut that board into a bunch of 1/2" wide strips. If you have a band saw use it so the wood doesn't bow as much.


Take 13 of those strips lay them out in a pattern you like then glue and clamp them just like the table top so you have 2 halves.


Plane the 2 halves and if you need to, clean them up with a chop or table saw.


Glue the 2 halves then remove any excess glue with a hand plane, chisel, or sandpaper.

Final Cuts:

Make some final cuts so you have a 16" x 16" square of wood.

Step 6: Drawer Face & Slats

Drawer Face


Cut a 13 1/8" long piece off your 2x12 and "cleanup" the edge. Then trim that to be a little less than 6" wide.

My board was split but I was able to work around it.


Plane the face to be 3/4" thick.


You should have 2 1/2" thick strips left from the previous step, cut both of those down to 14".

Step 7: Panels & Supports

Back Panel


When I was cutting wood for the bottom shelf I mismeasured and cut it 10 inches too long so I just used those 10" strips and made a back panel. Aka a 14" x 9" piece of wood.

Cut a 10" long piece of your 2x12 and then cut it into a bunch of 1/2" wide strips.


Take those strips then glue and clamp them. Clean up any glue with chisels, sandpaper, or a hand plane. Cut it to size if it isn't already.

Side Panels


At this point you should only have one big section left, mine was around 30" long. If your piece is longer its fine but I would cut it down to 30" so its easier to work with.

Take your board and "cleanup" the edge then cut it all into 3/8" thick strips. Iirc I got 12 strips out of it.


Take 12 strips then glue and clamp them.


Cut 29" wide sections out of the board and set the scrap aside.


Plane the glue off the boards that you just cut.

Final Cuts:

Cut the 2 boards down so each one is 14" long and 8 1/2" wide.


The supports are just 7" long strips that will be used to connect the panels to the legs.

Step 8: Drawer

The drawer is just a 1' x 1' box so i'll leave it up to you to decided how you would like to make it but this is how I did it.

I took the extra piece of wood that I had leftover from making the side panels and planed it down. Then I cut it to 11.5" x 11.5".

To make the sides of it I took a few strips of wood that I had left and ripped them down to be a half inch wide. I ended up with 7 strips but only used 4 of them. I glued 2 of them together so I had a 3" x 18" strip, I then repeated that. After the glue dried I planed those down, cut them, and made a box joint with a notch for the bottom to go into.

Step 9: HDPE Knob

I didn't want to spend $3 on a knob so I decided to make one out of HDPE. I've been experimenting with it for a few weeks now and thought it would work fine.

I used a shampoo bottle for this since the plastic is usually nicer.

Making the mold:

I got 2 blocks of plywood then drilled a half inch hole in one and cut a 1.5" box out of the other piece. Then I nailed those pieces together and clamped it to my table.

Melting the plastic:

While I was making the mold I had the plastic melting in a toaster oven at 375F. Make sure to cut the bottle up into small pieces.

I then took the plastic out, made it into a ball, and placed it back in the oven for 5 minutes.

Forcing it into the mold:

Take the plastic ball out and push it straight into the mold. Place a block of wood on top of it and clamp it down. You will have to work fast.

Removing it from the mold:

After you've left the plastic to sit for 15 minutes get a flathead screwdriver and pop the plastic out of the mold.

Shaping the knob:

I just used a coping saw to cut the plastic and a sander to shape it. Time lapse

Step 10: Putting It Together

Not everything is going to fit like a glove, some stuff will need to be adjusted so before you glue, screw, or nail anything build it upside down.

Connecting the brackets:

Begin by screwing the brackets to the side and back panels.

Installing the slats:

Insert the slats into the front legs and screw them in.

Connecting the panels to the legs and inserting the bottom shelf:

After you've done those things you can begin to connect the panels to the legs. Connect the back panel first then slide the bottom shelf in, and connect the other side panels. (I forgot to do this and had to take it all apart.) Make sure that you leave 1/2" of space above each panel so the legs can lock into the table top.

Mounting the drawer face and track:

Drill 2 holes in the back of the drawer and screw it into the face. It must be aligned 1 1/2" below the top of the face.

Drawer slides are expensive so I just used some scrap wood and made a little platform that the drawer could sit on.

Installing the table top:

I had no idea how to install the table top, I tried pocket holes, brackets, and lots of other things but they were all quite weak or didn't work at all. I saw this instructable a few days ago and decided to give it a shot. It worked okay.

Finishing touches:

If you have any wood left feel free to strengthen any part that you find particularly weak. I used it on the bottom shelf.

Step 11: Finishing

Once it was built I sanded it down, dusted it off, and stuck some felt pads on the feet.

Step 12: Thoughts

I really enjoyed making this and learned a lot but if you're someone who is looking for end tables I wouldn't recommend this.


  • It's made of pine so it's really easy to dent.
  • Takes a while to make, I spent about an hour each day for 2 weeks making this.
  • Final product isn't that strong.

Now if you're someone that enjoys wood working and likes a good challenge i'm sure you will have fun making this.

Everything used was either gotten for free or found, the wood, nails, screws, etc.

This is the most complicated instructable that i've made yet, I tried my best to make it as simple as possible. Feel free to ask questions!

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