How To Build a DIY Outdoor Table

Posted on June 12, 2017

by:

Editor’s note: This post is part of an occasional series featuring guest bloggers who are Simpson Strong-Tie brand ambassadors. Today’s post is by Elisha Albretsen from Pneumatic Addict. She is a mom of twin boys and describes herself as an independent former hairstylist who loves to build. She built a beautiful custom DIY Outdoor Table with our new Outdoor Accents® decorative hardware line. Thank you, Elisha, for this post. 

Isn’t outdoor entertaining this time of year the best? Hanging out in the backyard is a comfortable way to spend a beautiful evening. After building my rolling grill island last year, we’ve been spending a lot more time outside — so I decided I needed to build us a cool outdoor dining table.

When looking for inspiration, I found all sorts of gorgeous DIY tables, but many of them were too large for my small patio and too rustic for my style. Then, while walking through the building materials section of Home Depot, I spotted tempered glass deck railing panels and came up with a design that matches my patio style. I built a glass-topped dining table and accented it with some gorgeous Outdoor Accents® decorative hardware from Simpson Strong-Tie. I love how it turned out!

Get the FREE building plans for this project HERE.

Materials List:
(2) 4 x 4 x 96″ redwood posts
(3) 2 x 4 x 96″ redwood boards
(4) 2 x 2 x 96″ redwood posts
(1) 43″ x 36-5/16″ x 1/4″ tempered glass panel
(8) Simpson Strong-Tie® Outdoor Accents APA4 90° angles
(16) Simpson Strong-Tie Outdoor Accents hex-head washers
(8) 3-1/2″ Simpson Strong-Tie Outdoor Accents structural wood screws
(8) #10 x 1-1/2″ Simpson Strong-Tie Outdoor Accents connector screws
(8) #10 flat washers
2-1/2″ pocket-hole screws

Tools Needed:

  • Miter saw or circular saw
  • Table saw
  • Power drill
  • Pocket-hole jig
  • 3/8″ drill bit
  • 3/16″ drill bit
  • 1/8″ drill bit
  • Wood glue

Cut List
(4) 4 x 4 post @ 28-1/2
(2) 2 x 4 board @ 31-15/16″
(2) 2 x 4 board @ 37-9/16″
(1) 2 x 4 board @ 41 9-16″
(2) 2 x 4 board @ 17-1/4″
(2) 2 x 2 post @ 42-1/8″
(2) 2 x 2 post @ 39-7/16″
(2) 2 x 2 post ripped to 1-1/4″ x 1-1/2″ @ 42-1/8″
(2) 2 x 2 post ripped to 1-1/4″ x 1-1/2″ @ 33-7/16″

1. Use a miter saw or circular saw to cut four 28-1/2″ legs from 4 x 4 posts.

  1. Cut two, 2 x 4 x 31-15/16″ aprons and drill two 1-1/2″ pocket holes on each end. Connect leg pairs together with aprons flush to the top and outside edges of the legs. Secure through pocket holes, using wood glue and 2-1/2″ pocket-hole screws.

  1. Attach 37-9/16″ aprons between panels. Secure in place using wood glue and 2-1/2″ screws driven through 1-1/2″ pocket holes.

  1. Drill two 1-1/2″ pocket holes on either end of the 2 x 4 x 41-9/16″ cross support. Find the center of the 37-9/16″ aprons. Align the cross support and secure in place using wood glue and 2-1/2″ pocket-hole screws.

  1. Center cross support sides on cross support. Attach using wood glue and 2-1/2″ screws, driven through 1-1/2″ pocket holes.

  1. Now assemble to top frame. Since the glass panel cannot be cut smaller, make sure to double check your measurements before cutting the frame pieces. If anything, err on the side of too large instead of too small.

Cut two 2 x 2 x 42-1/8″ posts and two 2 x 2 x 39-7/16″ posts. Attach longer frame pieces to shorter frame pieces through 1-1/2″ pocket holes, using wood glue and 2-1/2″ screws.

  1. To create a 1/4″ groove for the glass panel to sit in, the 2 x 2 sub-frame pieces need to be cut down lengthwise or “ripped” to 1-1/4″ x 1-1/2″. Cut two 42-1/8″-long pieces and two 33-7/16″-long pieces.

Align longer sub-frame pieces inside the tabletop frame. Use a 1/8″ drill bit to predrill holes every 8″ horizontally through the sub-frame and into the outer frame. Secure the sub-frame in place using wood glue and 2-1/2″ screws.

  1. Place the top frame on the table base and allow a 1/4″ overhang on each side. Countersink three 3/8″ x 2″ holes on the bottom side of each apron. Predrill into the underside of the top frame, using a 1/8″ drill bit. Secure top in place using 2-1/2″ screws.

 

At this point, apply any stain or finish you plan on using. Although redwood holds up extremely well outdoors, I highly recommend using an oil-based paint or clear coat to protect the wood from the elements.

  1. Align an Outdoor AccentsAPA4 90° angle on each inside corner of where cross supports meet. Predrill through each hole, using a 1/8″ drill bit. Attach APA4s using  #10 x 1-1/2″ Outdoor Accents connector screws,  #10 washers and Outdoor Accents® hex-head washers.

The holes of the APA4s are in different locations on each side, so make sure to alternate their orientation so the screws on adjoining sides don’t hit each other.

  1. Align an Outdoor Accents APA4 90° angle on the outside of each leg, directly below the tabletop. Predrill through each hole, using a 3/16″ drill bit.

For each hole, slide an Outdoor Accents structural wood screw through an Outdoor Accents hex-head washer and drive the screws till snug.

  1. Carefully lower the tempered glass panel into the groove of the top frame.

That’s it! I placed my new outdoor table on the patio beneath my DIY solar chandelier, and I’m ready to entertain in style.

The view through the glass panel is definitely my favorite. The interesting supports and Outdoor Accents decorative hardware pieces look so cool in the center!

The smooth glass top also makes cleaning up spills a piece of cake; a pretty handy quality in a home with two messy boys.

The APA4 angles and hex-head washers are absolutely stunning! They are substantial and give my table a finished look. I used them decoratively for this project, but they are actually heavy-duty connectors and fasteners. They are a perfect solution for creating beautiful outdoor structures.

I love our new glass-top table and I’m excited to spend our summer evenings outside!