I am building my first table and was doing fairly well until it came to
attaching the legs to the apron. All the legs are the same length yet
after I attached everything together and stand it upright, the legs are
unlevel and the table rocks as though one leg is longer. One end of the
apron/leg assembly looks like it might be twisted in relation to the other
end. I used pocket holes to attach the apron and legs together. I
assembled it upside down on the workbench so that it stayed level during
assembly and the top of the legs are flush with the top of the apron. I
don't have the table top attached yet as I am trying to figure out how to
fix this problem. I have noticed that putting the top on and pushing
down makes it all straighten back up, yet the table top itself isn't heavy
enough to do this. Any help as to how to straighten this or fix the
problem is appreciated as well as any tips on how I can avoid this problem
in the future.
A twist/bow in the apron could cause this. If it is not bad just
sand/trim one of the two legs that don't rock until it stops rocking.
I would perform this adjustment after the top is attached because it
might pull everything straight once screwed down.
Easiest solution, if your leg style allows it, is to sand a bit off the
longer leg(s). If you're dealing with a decorative foot and can't remove
any material from the bottom, then I suppose you'll have to shorten the
leg from the top and reassemble.
As a rookie tablemaker myself, I find that the slightest bit of
difference in leg length, or racking of the apron, translates into a
very wobbly table. It's probably best to clamp the legs on an test
before final assembly.
Next time clamp well, then assemble/glue/screw with the table in the upright
postion on a _level_ surface.
Two options: make the long leg(s) short, or the short leg(s) longer.
If it's only a small adjustment, taping sandpaper to a flat surface under
the offending leg(s) and moving the table back and forth until it stops
rocking will often work.
You can also glue a shim of the same material, shaped to fit the leg
contour, to the bottom of an offending short leg. If you round-over the
edges of your table legs at the bottom, which you should do, you can
generally get away with this fix being invisible.
Last update: 10/29/06
> Two options: make the long leg(s) short, or the short leg(s) longer.
> If it's only a small adjustment, taping sandpaper to a flat surface
> the offending leg(s) and moving the table back and forth until it stops
> rocking will often work.
> You can also glue a shim of the same material, shaped to fit the leg
> contour, to the bottom of an offending short leg. If you round-over the
> edges of your table legs at the bottom, which you should do, you can
> generally get away with this fix being invisible.
One additional way.
Install some furniture glides on the bottom of the legs with some S/S
sheet metal screws, then insert S/S fender washers on the short leg
between glide and leg using screw to keep in place.
As all Tool engineers know it takes three locator points to create a
plane. That any additional points fall into that plane is pure luck.
But we always want to put four legs on everything.
establish which three legs you want to be your plane, then shim or
trim the fourth, whichever the case may be.
I built a table once that didn't rock until 'after' I attached the top! Try
putting the top on, it 'might' tweak things into place.
If it doesn't remove the top and 'gradually' shorten the longest leg by
rubbing with sandpaper/wood block a little at a time.
One more thing. Are you sure the floor you have the table on is completely
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.