Saturday Morning Workshop: Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Though super-sleek with its mid-century modern design, this coffee table still has plenty of room for storage.

Introduction

Build this stylish hairpin leg coffee table in just a few hours. Follow along with the video tutorial and step-by-step photos below.

Tools Required

  1. Brad nail gun
  2. Circular saw
  3. dado stack
  4. Drill/driver
  5. Table saw

Materials Required

  1. 1-3/4-in. brad nails
  2. 1/4" nuts (12)
  3. 1/4" x 1-1/4" machine screws (12)
  4. 13/16" maple peel-and-stick edge banding (16')
  5. 16" hairpin legs (4)
  6. 4'x4' 3/4" maple veneer plywood
  7. Painter's tape
  8. Wood filler
  9. Wood glue

Don’t know where to get hairpin legs? These hairpin legs are incredibly well-machined and offer a sturdy solution.

Cutting List

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Project Plans

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Project step-by-step (9)

Step 1

Cut parts to size

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Rip the top and bottom to width on the table saw. Cut the center support from the end of either piece, using a circular saw and a straightedge.

Step 2

Cut the miters

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Set your table saw blade to 45 degrees and attach a long fence to your miter gauge. Miter one end. Mark 40 in. from the initial miter, line up the mark with the kerf in the miter gauge fence, and cut the other miter. Using the table saw fence, miter one edge of each side (B). Miter the other edge to make the sides’ finished dimension.

Step 3

Apply edge banding

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Cut edge banding strips for each part, leaving a little extra length. Remove the backing and apply the banding to the edges. To ensure good adhesion, rub the banding down with a wood block or a J-roller if you have one. With the edge banding face down on your bench, carefully trim the excess with a utility knife. Sand all the edges of the banding. Plus: Check out our 34 favorite handy hints for woodworking here.

Step 4

Mark and cut the dadoes

Hairpin Coffee Table

Place the top onto the bottom, oriented how they’ll be when assembled. Mark a 3/4-in.-wide by 1/8-in.-deep dado on the edge of both parts. Make a small mark on one side of both pieces so you can re-create the orientation and ensure that the dadoes are aligned correctly. Cut the dadoes into the top and bottom (A).

Step 5

Assemble the top

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Glue the miters and clamp the sides to the top. Be sure to check for square. Reinforce the joints with brad nails if you like. Repeat with the center support (C).

Step 6

Drill holes for attaching the legs

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Measure 1 in. from each edge of the inside face of the bottom (A). Set the legs along the lines and mark the hole locations. Countersink and predrill 1/4-in. clearance holes.

Step 7

Attach the bottom

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Glue the side miters and the dado, then clamp. Reinforce the joints with brad nails through the side for added strength.

Step 8

Fasten the legs

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Drop the machine screws through the holes in the bottom (A), set the legs into place and secure them with 1/4-in. nuts.

Step 9

Fill holes, sand and finish

Hairpin Leg Coffee Table

Fill all the screw and nail holes with wood filler. Sand the table “through the grits,” ending with 320-grit. Apply your preferred finish. We used Watco Danish Oil in the natural color. Click here if you want to buy the same finish!

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