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Wobbly table legs1/7
I had a simple request from a customer for a table - four 2x2 legs and 1" plywood top for an existing table top to sit on. I built just that and attached the legs with 3/8" leg lag bolts (2.5" total length, threads on each end). The legs are very tight to the plywood but the table has a lot of wobble to it (when bumped from the side). What would be the best most discrete way of correcting this? I've though about adding a 2" skirt between the legs...are there any better solutions?
I don't get it, what are you looking to correct? You built what was requested. Was there something else that you were supposed to do?
The wobble...I'm not going to deliver a wobbly table. Regardless if they didn't specify something to control it, I'm sure they're not expecting a wobbly table and I don't feel like surprising them with it. My new idea is 5"x5"x1/4" plate steel with four countersunk holes to attach the leg and four holes at the corners to attach to the plywood...I would rather not waste my time with an ineffective fix so I figured I would look for some advice.
I'm sure that you have some working in your joinery, but, you'll always have flex with these materials. Even if the 2 x 2 was grown to the plywood, it'd still wobble. If you want to build a different table, then I like your first suggestion better. Put the legs together joined with an apron like most simple wood tables, and get rid of the plywood while you're at it. There's no need to give yourself another headache down the road.
yeah... i also think you must get rid of plywood... its an extra headach
I think the problem is that 1. You are letting the customer tell you how to do your work and 2. You don't know enough about table joinery.
You need to have the professional knowledge and confidence to tell your customer how you can build a proper base for their table top.
If this work is not easily within your skillset, then pass on the work to someone that does know.
When you go to the dentist, do you tell him what tools to use and where?
You aren't going to solve this problem without stiffening the plywood. Most likely the wobble is from the 1" plywood not being flat and rigid.
A good wide table skirt might solve the problem depending upon the overall table size. Smaller table size is better here.
I would call the customer and discuss the issue with them. If the table top they want to put on top of the plywood is heavy enough it will press the legs down to the floor and stop the wobble. If the top isn't going to be heavy enough to do this then a more thoroughly designed 4 legged base will be needed.
I do understand that you are working with customer design requests. Your experience will be needed to help your customer realize what is and isn't feasible.
Thanks for the input guys. I killed a hour in the shop adding and finishing a small skirt and have it finished now and the table is solid like a rock. It's really not that visible and looks good anyway; I think everyone will be happy.
From what I understand you built a table with 2"x2" legs with a 1" plywood top, and you are complaining that it didn't work out?
From your description of this problem it my impression that this is a hobbyist, or homeowner type question.
A qualified professional would have (1) advised their client that such a design is faulty, and (2) suggested improvements.
Kind of like the cabinetmaker that told on of my clients he could build chairs and built them with no corner blocks. Both of her customers fell on the floor the first time they sat on them. Putting legs on a piece of plywood is a liability issue IMO.