Making use of a small space requires out-of-the-box thinking. Here's a project that makes smart use of space.
Step 1: Cut and Paint Wood
Step 2: Build the Legs
Step 3: Place Dowel Centers
Step 4: Bore Holes with Dowel Jig
Step 5: Clamp Frame Together
Step 6: Attach Legs
Step 7: Add Hinges
Step 8: Build Upper Bracket
Step 9: Add Barrel Bolt
Step 10: Finish
In its "up" position, this fold-away table serves as a handy message center; in its "down" position, it's a simple breakfast table or work space. To make it yourself, all you need are everyday lumber, a few hinges and chalkboard paint.
Begin by cutting the top to size; you can use either 3/4-in. plywood or laminated pine shelving. Consider
painting your tabletop now. You'll have
to do touchup painting later, but it’s
easier to do the bulk of the work now
rather than working around the other
components later. Paint the bottom
with chalkboard paint and the top and
edges with high-gloss enamel. With the
enamel, paint the pine you’ll be using
for the leg, too.
Next, build the leg unit, which does double duty as the chalkboard frame. Cut the frame components to length.
Make pairs of layout marks on both ends of the 19-in.-long horizontal pieces, 3/4-in. in from each edge. Clamp the boards to your work surface, then
use a doweling jig to bore two 3/8-in. holes on your marks.
Place dowel centers in the holes.
Press the edge of the long side members against the dowel centers to mark the exact location of those holes. Use the dowel jig to bore those holes.
Apply glue to the dowel pins and boards and clamp the frame together.
Once the glue has dried, attach the
legs to the 2-ft. x 3-ft. top using two butt
hinges. Screw one leaf of the hinge to
the bottom of the tabletop, 3/4 in. back
from the end and the other leaf to the
back edge of the leg.
Mount the 2-ft.-long, 1-in. x 2-in. lower
brace so the upper edge is 34 1/2 in. off
the floor. Secure it to two wall studs
using 3-in. drywall screws. Use two
butt hinges to secure the tabletop to the
lower brace. Raise and lower your table
to make certain it’s level in the "down"
position and flat against the wall in the
Build the 2-ft.-long upper bracket by securing the 3/4-in. x 3/4-in. member to the 1 1/2-in. flap with two butt hinges. Have a helper raise the table into the closed position while you mark the location of the top bracket. Lower the table and secure the top bracket to the wall using 3-in. drywall screws.
Raise the table top up and install the barrel bolt.
Touch up paint as needed.
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