You could screw through the top, use hanger bolts (bolt on one end,
screw on other...bolt end goes into a threaded inset), drill a
sizeable hole (3/4-1") thru table into leg top and glue in a dowel....
Either that or drill through the epoxy. But after sleeping on it I
don't think those were very good suggestions. Possibilities but not
good. Here is a better way...
Glue the legs on. You can't use regular glue as the glued surface on
the legs is end grain and won't have any strength when glued with
"woodworker's glue" but will if you use epoxy. Turn the table upside
down, apply a thick coating to the top of the legs and set in place,
no clamping is necessary. Let the legs remain there undisturbed for
at *least* 24 hours...the epoxy will get fairly hard after 12 hours or
so but not strong enough to take much stress. It takes several days
to thoroughly cure.
Almost any way of attaching legs is sufficient to carry the weight of
a table top and things on it. However, lateral force is a different
thing as the legs act like levers multiplying that force. That means
the glued on legs would need to be reinforced laterally and there are
two ways of doing that.
1. Box in the top of the legs with strips of 3/4"x3/4" wood glued
both to the legs and table. The strips could be glued with any glue -
epoxy, woodworkers. All surfaces being glued should be free of any
finish. The strips don't have to be square shape in cross section,
they could be quarter round, cove shaped, etc. They could be finished
to match the legs in which case they'd look like part of the legs or
to contrast with them.
If you do this and have glued on the legs with epoxy, make sure
you remove any epoxy squeeze out around the legs so that the wood
strips will fit snugly. Remove the squeeze out *before* it sets up
hard by wiping/scraping off.
2. Do something similar but with epoxy. Epoxy is fairly viscous
but still runs. Places that sell it also sell thickeners so that the
epoxy can be applied to vertical surfaces without running. There are
numerous thickeners...talc, micro-balloons, powdered wood/sawdust,
Cab-o-sil. The latter is very fine silica and what I use most.
To use a thickener, mix it slowly and thoroughly into the
catalyzed resin. In this case, you'd want it fairly thick. If you
were using Cab-o-sil it would look like and be about as thick as
One then takes the thickened epoxy and makes fillets around the
legs, overlapping legs and table by 1/4-1/2". The epoxy can be
applied with something like a tongue depresser but I prefer to use a
finger to smooth it.
Epoxy fillets add a lot of strength but won't look very good; for
one thing, it is really tough to get them smooth and even without
sanding them; for another, they will have the color of whatever was
used to thicken the epoxy (with cab-o-sil, semi-clear) and need to be
painted to look good. OTOH - depending on how far in you set the
legs - the fillets may not be normally visible.
Some epoxy tips...
It is sticky, messy stuff. The thing that cleans it up is vinegar.
It won't stick to many plastics...I use CoolWhip containers for mixing
and when dry it just pops right out. Plastic painter's drop cloths
can be useful to protect areas.
Clear tape (like packaging tape) can be used to protect areas (epoxy
doesn't stick to it). If I were going to make fillets as above I
would use tape to demarcate the desired area, apply the epoxy, smooth
with a finger so it feathers out as thin as possible at tape edge then
remove the tape either immediately or after the epoxy set up a bit.
Once it sets up. it gets a chemical blush on the surface called "amine
blush". That has to be removed before applying a finish. You do so
with water...just wipe off with damp sponge or rag.
I'm a chemist? :) Never used the stuff but I *have* used their
regular epoxy and it is fine. I seem to recall that there are a very
limited number of manufacturers and that everyone else buys from them,
and repackages it.
OK, here's an even simpler idea.
Go to the nearest cheap lumber yard.
Buy a 2' x 6'-8" hollow core door, cheapest wood, probably luan. Buy a
sheet of 1/4" plywood, or plywood paneling (already finished!!!) that you
like. Glue A to B.
Or even, buy a better door with the wood that you like, and forget the
Figure out something for the edges--either some wood trim, left over
Put your choice of legs on each corner.
Paint and stain the top in a way that makes your heart pitti-pat. Put lots
of polyurethane varnish on top of the paint.
This will be strong enuf to hold lots of beer, easy to build, and cheap enuf
that you can leave it for your landlord to worry about when you move.
I was a poor college student once.....now I'm just poor.
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