I decided I needed a coffee table that suits my tastes. I went into the back garden and found some old logs and sticks and also old wood in the garage to make it. I really enjoyed the process of making it, and also love using it.
Step 1: Levelling the Table
After selecting the log I wanted to use, I had to do 2 things.
1. Balance the Log so it didn't fall over (You can skip this step if you don't mind the table falling over and letting drinks spill on the floor)
2. Work out how to level the top of the log to affix the table top..
To balance the table, I use some scrap wood to make an L-Shape support. The L-Shaped piece I decorated on one edge with a weaving carving. Once I did that, I attached the side piece and bottom piece together with dowels and glue. (Detail1)
Once the L-shaped support was made, I drilled a hole in the side base of the log to allow for a dowel to go into the log. I must point out that this is often a trial and error method getting things to fit as the log is curved. I had to slightly cut the L-Shaped support to fit the log curves. Yo can use a band saw, scroll scar or coping saw to do this.
The top of the L-Shaped support I drilled straight through the top of the log and into the top of the L-Shaped support
(Detail2). I glued then tapped the dowel in
Step 2: Table Top
I used scrap pieces of wood, then connected the planks together then glued and clamped and left over night to allow the glue to dry.
I didn't plane or thickness the wood as I wanted everything to be rustic.The table top was screwed through the top into the op of the log. It is important to note that I used some scrap wood on top of the log to level it out. I screwd through that scrap piece straight into the log. The screws were counter sunk so I could then use plugs to conceal the screw fixings.
I also used some old branched cuttings I had to add to the table. I liked the texture of the branches and leave.
Step 3: Decoration
I decided to carve a simple border to the table top edge.
I did it very loosely to add rustic charm to the table. I sketched a pencil outline, then I used a flat chisel to carve the table edge decorative carving.
You can see the carving on the wood support piece too.
Step 4: Staining & Waxing
To get the effect on the table I used a few different stain colours.
I first applied a very light stain all over the table top, I then wiped the excess stain off the table straight away.
I then used a dark brown stain using a rag to apply the stain to the outside perimeter, and gently feathered the stain towards centre of table, but not to the direct centre as you want to leave the light colour untouched.
I then used a mahogany stain to feather between the brown and the light colour.
I think I also used a touch of food colouring too.
Once finished and dry, i then waxed the table top using a cabinet makeers wax, applied with steel wool 0000 grade, then used an old cotton tshirt to buff
Step 5: Additional Supports
After making the table with the log and wood support, I found that it wasn't stable.
I went back into the garden, found some more sticks as supports then attacked then.
One support I left higher than the table, and all I did was use a saw to cut into the stick, then used a chisel to check out a notch, then glued it to the side of the table.
The other stick I made a groove or pocked in the underside of the table top, then glued and nails the stick into the table top, it is nice and stable now.
Very happy with the results.
Step 6: Finished & Video
This last photo is of the table in my living room.
I have a quick YouTube video of the table, link below: