Woodworking: End table refinishing project (part 2)

The end table I picked up was from the Free Stuff section of Craigslist. It was on a front lawn, so I didn’t even have to enter a building or interact with anyone. When I approached the house, I saw someone leaving from it, so I confirmed that the furniture on the lawn was left there with the intention of being taken away by strangers.

Now, the table actually looked pretty good in the picture. It seemed as though it just needed to be sanded and refinished. There was a big stain on the top of it that needed to be removed, sure, but that seemed doable.

When I looked at the table itself, though, it was worse than I’d expected.

But that meant it was better than I’d expected.

Other items had been removed since the post was put up, but this was still there. Probably because it the top was split. I wouldn’t know how a lot more of it was split until later, but that it had remained on the lawn was good enough for me.

I wiped it down, put it in my trunk, and I drove away.

A split and that oval ring! Well, many oval rings. And more splits.

When I started to look at the split, I noticed that someone had attempted to repair the panel adjacent to the split. That part jutted out a little bit, and the gluing was a little thick with not enough pressure holding it together.

Then there were more discoveries!

Most of the screws that held the table together were stripped. So removing the screws became its own challenge.

I got a screw extractor set from Amazon, and I was surprised at how awesome and easy it is to remove screws with stripped heads.

And I got to see the repair job a prior owner had attempted.

Oh noes! Too much glue and poor alignment!
Remnants of tape to keep it together instead of using a clamp!

OK, so repairs had to be made, which meant that suddenly I had to get clamps of my own. I ended up getting some DeWalt parallel bar clamps. I figured I’d use them again, and buying them means I kinda need to use them again. I also bought some spring clamps so the boards would stay even while drying.

While I sanded the old glue from between the boards before gluing them up, I decided not to sand the faces of the boards. My friend Gerry agreed with that assessment of not sanding till later so I would avoid duplicate work, and that ended up being a good call.

But as I was prepping the top board for gluing, I realized that there was a split that ran too deep. I broke the boards apart at the seam with my bare hands like it was matzah. It would be three boards to glue up rather than two.

That was only on the top part, though!

The lower section was in three pieces already.

It could have been worse!

Friday afternoon I glued up lower section and let it dry for a little more than 24 hours.

Look at that thing dry! That was pretty much my Saturday.

Saturday night I did the same for the upper board.

That looks familiar, right?
It’s just a little smaller.

I decided that Sunday would be for sanding the lower board and the side pieces. I wanted to get as much done possible Sunday because Monday’s forecast called for very strong winds.

I was surprised at what I found as I continued to sand. That will be in next week’s post.

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About raabidfun

I'm a guy living the #raabidfun lifestyle. I figured I would create a blog about crossword puzzles I do. The idea is to do the NYT crossword and the WSJ crossword daily as much as I can. That includes when I don't finish and have clearly failed. They can be difficult. Also I am not an attorney, and any legal analysis in this blog reflects my interpretation, which means it can be flawed and should not be relied upon for use in legal matters (especially against me).

3 thoughts on “Woodworking: End table refinishing project (part 2)

  1. clmuileboom

    Something about that first photo. The end able just looks so familiar. It’s almost like I once had the same one as a child or seen it somewhere. It will be great to see the finished project.

    1. raabidfun

      I’m having fun with it! Another installment is coming next week on Tuesday. Let me know what you think as you see more of it. Thanks for reading!


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