Over the years I have built a number of table tops to go over existing
tables to make them larger.
Construction has usually been discs of MDF or Chipboard ( often made
in pieces for ease of handling ) that just sit on the existing table.
Its covered by a cloth so looks are not important . This is standard
practice in restaurants.
I now have to make another for my daughter and I wonder if there is a
better lighter material.
Ideally a sort of MDF foam sandwich board that is cheap and could be
I would appreciative of any ideas.
I just did this using 3 hollow core bi-fold doors (for a rectangular
table). Fairly light, fairly strong, fairly cheap. (each door was $5
at a local used building materials store - Construction Junction, in
case you are in Pittsburgh). I screwed them together along the solid
wood edging. This will obviously only work for a rectangular table.
Here's one for you that is light, super strong and won't sound hollow when
you knock on it. A torsion box can be made using many different materials
and methods. I've seen layers of heavy-duty, waxed cardboard used between
sheets of ply and veneer to build a custom designed table presented in FWW a
few years back to the idea below. I have made and still use, 4' x 8' light
weight, temporary worktables using torsion box construction. Done right -
they are very strong. So give this idea some consideration.
Use 1/4" or 1/2" ply glued to the dense, pink Owens-Corning "Foamular"
insulating foam - or the blue stuff from 3M. It comes in 1/2", 1", 1-1/2"
and 2" thicknesses. Use plain old wood glue to attach the ply to the foam
and then edge it as you like.
The foam cuts very easy and having just insulated my basement with it I've
used every tool I have I think to cut it - from a blade to my tablesaw.
Actually great stuff to work with and it is used widely for other arts and
crafts, modeling, stage props, etc. It can be painted, sanded and worked
like Balsa. It's also relatively inexpensive. A 24" wide x 8' long sheet,
1" thick, costs ~$7.50 at the borgs.
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