How To Build Your Own Picnic Table

No back yard, patio, or deck is truly complete without a nice picnic table to enjoy those family cookouts. Building your own picnic table is not only possible, it is also a good weekend project to take on to work on those carpentry skills. As you will see, you need some easy to find materials and to follow some fairly easy carpentry instruction and you will be able to create a great picnic table for you and your family to enjoy.

First, you must consider the material. Your most prominent piece of material is the lumber you will use. Most any wood can be used, but redwood will likely last the longest, while pine will be the least expensive to use in building your picnic table. Whatever you choose you will need 14 ten foot pieces of it that are as straight as you can find. Also, be sure to select wood that is suitable for outdoor use.

Those pieces of lumber will then need to be cut into the pieces you need. Make sure you mark the pieces with a pencil as you cut them. You will need two thirty one inch long pieces for top support of your table. You will need two sixty four inch pieces for connectors, four thirty inch pieces for the legs of the table itself, eight fifteen and one half inchers for the legs of the benches, four foot long pieces for connectors, two thirty four inch pieces for bracing, six five foot long pieces for the bench slats, and finally eight six foot long pieces for the table top slats. Once you are done with the cutting, it is just a matter of assembling your picnic table.

Keep in mind that as you assemble your table, two and one half inch long decking or weatherized screws will work best. They will hold the wood together well while also holding up well in weather. You can also use nails, but your wood may come apart more easily. Either way, use something that is galvanized or weatherized.

First, attach a bench leg to each end of each bench support piece. This will form a series of “U” shapes. After four times, you will have the bench supports built for your picnic table. Next, you will attach a table leg both square and flush to each end of a top support piece. These will also form “U” shapes. Once you have these done, you will have the table top supports completed.

Next, you will need to attach a table top support bracket to one of the connectors. You should make sure that the legs are each 20 inches from the connector ends. You can then attach the bench support bracket at each end so that they are both flush and square. Once this step is done, you have your picnic table ends completely built. You are well on your way.

Stand each of them up so that they are about 36 inches apart on the ground. It may help to have someone else at this point as an extra set of hands makes the process easier. For each bench support bracket, attach the connectors between the uprights. Then, with the third connector, you will attach it from the center of one top piece to the center of another.

Finally, you can deck the benches and table top with your pieces. When you are done, you will have a fine picnic table that you can use on your deck, patio, or yard for dining and entertaining. What’s more, you will have done it yourself. Simply finish the deck any way you like and seal it with a non-toxic sealant to protect it from the elements.

WARNING: when using power equipment, be sure to follow all safety precautions and to use proper eye protection.

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