Introduction: Chalkboard Table

About: My name is Randy and I am a Community Manager in these here parts. In a previous life I had founded and run the Instructables Design Studio (RIP) @ Autodesk's Pier 9 Technology Center. I'm also the author of t…

I can't tell you how many times I've been sitting at the dining room table and have been struck with a 'brilliant' idea and haven't had anywhere to write it down. This table, in fact, was one such idea. I thought to myself, wouldn't it be great if the table were a chalkboard and I could sketch out my ideas right there as they came to me, rather than having to get up and find my notebook? And then I thought that I could also use it to label various food dishes on the table for the benefit of the vegetarian in the household. And why stop there? I could also easily resolve issues pertaining to seating arrangements with a few simple strokes. I could save money on place mats and table settings. I could draw funny pictures of cats being eaten by octopi. And in my mind, it was decided then and there that this table was going to - no - needed, to be made.

Step 1: Go Get Stuff

You will need:

- 3' x 5' x 3/4" board
- (x2) 3' sections of 1x2
- Wood or craft glue
- Some sort of large weight
- Chalkboard paint
- (x2) black Ikea trestle
- Brushes, rollers, trays and drop clothes
- (x2) 6' aluminum extrusions (McMaster Carr #8427A67)
- Power drill and 1/4 and 5/32 drill bits
- (x12) Wood screws and screw driver
- Chalkboard chalk
- Chalkboard eraser (optional)

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Step 2: Glue

Glue your two 1x2 wood bars parallel and on edge such that they are running length-wise to table.

Place a board over top the two bars, weight them down and let the glue dry.

Step 3: Paint

Paint the table surface with chalkboard paint. You can cover the top with your fine roller and the edges with your brush. Apply a thin and even coat and then let it dry as directed.

Place a second coat and let dry again.

It should look pretty good at this point.

(tip: to save the roller while the table dries, cover it in saran wrap to keep the paint on it from drying.)

Step 4: Prepare Chalk Holders

Cut the aluminum extrusion to the size of the table using your hacksaw. The easiest way to measure this is to simply line it up with table and make a mark where it extends past the edge.

Measure an inch in from each edge of the aluminum extrusion and make a mark. Next make marks at one foot intervals between each of these two holes.

Drill 1/4" holes a foot apart.

Step 5: Fasten Chalk Holders

Hold the aluminum extrusion up to the edge of the table. Make sure it is lined up where you want to install it and then drill 5/32" pilot holes to correspond with the center of each hole in the aluminum extrusion.

Once you have drilled all the pilot holes, attach the piece of aluminum with your screws.

Step 6: Chalk

Put some blackboard chalk in the chalk holder and you should be good to go.

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