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Old 11-10-2017, 02:00 PM   #1
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Ikea Table Expansion


I have the beginnings of a table made from three old restaurant table tops. The tops look to be maple chunks 25mmx 30mm and varying in length from 125 to 250 mm.

I took three of these tops (650mm x 930mm) and joined them on their long sides to make a dining table. As my friend with the joiner pointed out, the grain goes the "wrong" way, across the table. Aesthetically I like it, functionally this means sag.

Since I have a bunch of rough cut maple planks, I thought running a plank (140 to 200mm wide) down the center of the table would solve that sag problem and add awesome to an otherwise boring table. It will be finished with EnviroTex Lite flood coat on top and polyurethane on the bottom. The legs are steel tube welded to plates and independently bolted in 180mm squares at each corner.

My question is, given the finish, do I need to be concerned with expansion? Is the able going to tear itself apart?
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Old 11-10-2017, 02:08 PM   #2
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Re: Ikea Table Expansion


Ahh, pictures . . .


Last edited by Jakwriter; 11-10-2017 at 02:10 PM. Reason: 'Cause pictures are worth a thousand . . . You know.
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Old 11-10-2017, 05:40 PM   #3
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Re: Ikea Table Expansion


Nice table.
I wouldn't worry about differential expansion. But I don't think that board is going to do much to stiffen it unless you turn it 90 degrees. On the stiffener, you need height, not width.
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Old 11-10-2017, 07:50 PM   #4
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Re: Ikea Table Expansion


I don't think it will sag on its own. It might break easier someone was to sit on it in the center.
A leg in the center might be a better choice.
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Old 11-10-2017, 08:02 PM   #5
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Re: Ikea Table Expansion


Add brackets or something to the posts so you can add a 2x4 skirt under the table. A few angle brackets to attach it to the table.
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Old 11-12-2017, 08:43 AM   #6
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Re: Ikea Table Expansion


Sag usually happens along the grain. That table may break, as pointed, along the glue joint but it helps that the arrangement is more like finger joint. They are used, so if they are flat now I wouldn't think they will sag later. Still don't leave heavy decorations or such 24/7.
You can reinforce the butt joints with glued cleat under the joints. Doesn't have to be edge to edge.

Last edited by carpdad; 11-12-2017 at 08:45 AM.
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Old 11-13-2017, 12:54 AM   #7
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Re: Ikea Table Expansion


Thanks for the input. It seems I was freaking out about expansion/contraction. Due to time constraints, and having a welder and plasma cutter instead of jointer and planer, this is what I went with . . .





Just about doubled the weight, but now their baby can sit on it until he's a teenager.

Thank you again. Ya'll will be hearing from me when those maple planks get turned into ANOTHER table.
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