How to Build a Ping Pong Table




Introduction: How to Build a Ping Pong Table

The project describes the construction of a Ping Pong table dimensioned to the internationals standard sizes.

It’s a easy job: all people can be able to do it.

Only simple materials are used (wood mainly), and are necessary only simple tools for working the components.

The project combines the satisfaction of the creativity with the pleasure for the ping pong gaming.

The project is completed with 2D e 3D technical drawings, with dimensions, notes, part list, photos and instructions.

Good work and have fun!

Ciao from Italy.

Davide Dona’

Step 1: Scope

We will build a ping pong table fully conform to the internationals standard sizes, light, fully in wood, and fully disassemblable.

It is a creative project, for fun before with the do it yourself, and after with gaming.

Pay attention: All the dimensions on drawings are in centimeters: 1 centimeter = 0,3937 inch!
The material for construction is wood, and is not required a high precision for realization, so none tolerances are indicated on drawings: it is enough to have some rasps.

Step 2: The Ping Pong Table Legs

Now we start with the ping pong table legs (drawing 2): we utilize 4 (four) workstands, that we can find easily in a do it yourself center.

If the workstand is not of high quality, it is better reinforce the its joints with some little through bolts and nuts.

Please note that the workstand must be high enough to realize the final dimension of 76 cm beetween the playing surface and the floor (standard dimension). If the workstand is too much high, must be cut.

The first operation is the creation of the slot housing for support pins.

We utilize a round rasp, penetrating the workstand and checking the support pin until to the optimal coupling.

We can now proceed with the through drilling of workstand, externally respect to the slot housing for support pins.

Then we insert bolts and nuts, that must be regulated in closure, in order to permit a coupling not too much tight but even not too much slack.

A hole of 1 cm diameter, utilizing bolts of 0,6 cm diameter is the better solution.

Step 3: The Table Support

Now we proceed with the construction of table supports (drawing 3).
It is a robust wooden plank, where we must apply the support pins, using appropriate wood screws. After, the table support shall be drilled for creating the holes for the table pins.

The non-rigid assembly of workstands and supports will permit a table tilting, in order to find the better positioning.

Step 4: The Table

Now we work on table (drawing 4).

They are two pieces of plywood (thickness of 1,6 cm it is right), cutted to the nominal dimensions.

We must fix the net support, using wood screws reinforced with a layer of glue.

The net support must be prepared with the holes for the net pin inserting.

Then we fix the table pin, using some little metal brackets, glue and wood screws.

Utilizing wood bars with square section, we can build the frame, assembling the segments by metal brackets, and fixing it to the table with glue and wood screws.

The frame is not mandatory, but it is a very good reinforcement for the structure.

Step 5: The Net Device

Now we build the net device (drawing 5).

The net device will have also the function of join and align the two half of the ping pong table.

For this reason its design can appear complicated:

Prepare the bar (square section 2 x 2 cm), cutting it at the right dimension;

Fix the net plates with wooden screws. The net plates must be drilled for the net pin inserting;

Fix the net shafts, using wood screws.

As net we can use one bought in a store, adapting it to our project, or use a piece of net for fence, or other similar solution.

Step 6: The Net Pins

Now we build the net pins (drawings 6), cutting the wood round bar at the right dimension, and applying to it a head obtained from a plank, or from a bigger bar.

Step 7: Painting Table

Now we can proceed with painting of playing surface.

The painting cycle used by me is:

- primer coat: 2 layers of impregnant varnish for wood (green or blue color);

- marking of lines with white enamel paint;

- top coat: 2 layers of transparent varnish for wood floors (parquet).

The top coat with the warnish for wood floors give to the playing surface the necessary resistance and the hardness for a good performance.

The other components can be can be left unpainted, or painted with enamel

Step 8: Assembling Table

Now we can assembly the ping-pong table (see drawing 1)

1) Positioning the workstand to the right distance;

2) Assembling the table supports on the workstands inserting the support pins in the its housings;

3) Positioning the tables on the table supports inserting the table pins in the its holes;

4) Assembling the net device aligning the holes on the net support with the holes on the net plates, sliding the net bar under the tables;

5) Lock with net pins.

And now enjoy yourself!

Step 9: Photos of the Construction Details

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    3 years ago

    A ping pong table is 5x9 (feet) and it is nearly impossible to make one from the 4x8 sheets at most nationwide large home improvement centers in the USA or from the similarly sized panels available in the EU. It takes 3 sheets to get the required pieces (2 @ 5 x 4, 1 @ 5x1 or 2 @ 5x 1/2 if you’re making half table panels for easier storage or a folding frame. Some experience and skill is required to splice the center area. If it were a first project requiring this use some of the scrap to make 2 or 3 practice pairs 5’ long, (close enough doesn’t look good on a ping pong table - keep practicing) If you do splice, 2 seams 6” from the net each will be less disruptive. I suggest finding the right size panels

    a 16mm thick panel is less desirable than an 18mm panel because the internal layup is more susceptible to curling. Whatever panels you use, they have to be sealed on all sides to avoid curling

    5x5 (feet) is a specialty furniture and cabinet makers plywood size, usually a high quality panel, and priced accordingly.

    5x10 (feet) is available in every grade from CDX to luan veneer faces. Choosing a good grade will save many hours of filling and sanding. I’m less certain about the availability of the size in the EU than North America - perhaps someone else will comment.

    Finding either of these sizes in stock locally depends on whether or not someone in business near there buys them regularly, Most lumber yards will order them, if they won’t, call another lumber yard until you find one that will.


    Question 3 years ago

    Can you send me the full, one-paged plan please? Thank-you.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    I'm trying to build this table with one of my students and the instructions don't state what size the bolts are on the sawhorses or on the net. If anyone could send me the sizes to Were running out of time for this so if you could get the sizes asap that would be very much appreciated. Thank you


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Nice. We'd built a slightly undersized version (since we couldn't get the particular wood plates we needed in larger sizes) similar to this...although in hindsight, we should have thought out the leg set-up a bit better (two sawhorses perpendicular to the table length instead of 4 parallel, with 2x4's spanning the length that set into the horse tops). I like your net assembly much more, though - it looks sturdy and easy to put up/break down. Kudos.


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Dear Kudos,
    Thank you for your comments!
    The net assembly design of my table is very functional, it's the better part of project.
    Do you have a picture or drawing of your construction?
    Ciao from Italy!


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Hmmm...I'm not sure if I have any shots on hand (granted, I haven't checked the archives from my dad's camera since early summer, and we built the table in August...I'll take a look through and see if I can post any). I'll have to get back to you on that. Honestly, except for the quick 3D model I built as a design plan (which we promptly ignored during the actual construction), we built it as fast as we could so we could finally play ping-pong on our new patio...
    By the way, what program did you use for the design or the drawings you posted? It looks similar to a number of the 3D CAD packages I've used (Pro/E, AutoCAD, Inventor, Solidworks, etc.), but that exploded view in Step 8 looks much better than most I've seen.

    (I'd bet the weather is much nicer in Italy than here in Syracuse, New York. Where in Italy do you hail from? My family came from the Provincia di Firenze, but I haven't had a chance to visit Italy yet).


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Your family came from Italy? Great!!!!
    Pasta, Pizza, o Sole mio!
    I live in northern Italy, my little city is between Milano and Torino, for the precision Provincia di Novara (Piemonte)
    In this period the weather is good, there is always the sun and +10°C, but the winter can be very hard in my zone.
    The weather is very sweet at south of Roma, and in Sicily is almost as in north Africa, similar to your California I think.
    Are you a 3D CAD user?
    The Ping Pong Project, parts, assembly and drawings, is maked with Pro/ENGINEER, the best for me.
    The drawing modality of Pro/E can create fantastic exploded views and sections that others software cannot create so well.
    You can found some components created by me with Pro/E on my Blog:

    Provincia di Firenze is wonderful, one of the best places of Italy!
    I would like visit the United States…maybe one day I will succeed.


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Ahh I should have recognized the font as being from Pro/ENGINEER (although AutoCAD uses a very similar font) - Pro/E is my personal favorite, too. I've been using Pro/E exclusively for 3 or 4 years now, ever since one of my college courses required its use and I found the student version for a fantastically low price. I mostly use it for its "Mechanica" modules - Finite Element Analysis in particular - and for 3D mock-ups (when redesigning my living room wall, I recreated my whole room in Pro/E). I use the drawing tools (especially for full-scale drawings - I designed a full RC aircraft in Pro/E and printed parts at full scale for pin-board templates), but for my applications I rarely need to create part explosions or sectioned views.

    Very nice models in your blog, by the way.