The Family Backyard Looks Empty Without a Great Wooden Picnic Table
If you are looking for a great project that will grace your family's backyard and bring decades of fun for you and your family for the many years to come, consider building a picnic table for your outdoor gatherings. How many family photos of old have you seen with smiling faces from every generation gathered around a faded but highly servicible classic wood picnic table. There it is the picnic layout spread invitingly on a checkered red cloth. The watermelon, the potato salad, the buns and the smoking grill complete the picture. Your weekend project could become a family heirloom worth its weight in golden memories. So make it a family project and get started today!
The Basics on How to Build a Classic Wood Picnic Table
Although it is a day long only project it can be a bit complicated so you will probably want to get some good picnic table plans to follow. Don't let it become an all summer job. But if you start in the winter. Hey you can really take your time. The basics on how to build a picnic table as well as the types of wood and materials and other items are that you will need is the place to start.
Wooden Picnic Table Plans
It's actaully pretty easy to build picnic tables. Start by getting all your supplies together. Go to the lumber or home store and buy the following (for an eight foot long table): 12- 8 foot 2 X 4's, 4 -8 foot long 12 X 6's, 2- 8 foot long 2 X 10"s, 16- 3" X 3/8" galvanized (so they don't rust) carriage bolts. If you don't know what these are ask the hardware department and 2- 1 pound boxes of galvanized nails (16D). You will also need hammer, tape measure, drill and saw. These instructions outline basics on what would be considered one of many 2 X 4, 2 X 6 woood picnic table plans that you might follow.
Start with the top of the table: cut three 26 inch pieces from one of the 2 X 4's for the underneath cross boards. Nail eight 2 X 4's to the cross boards with them equally spaced at the end (4 inches in), middle point and other end (4 inches in). Make sure you are nailing them to the cross board on the edge (the 2 inch side of the board).
The wooden picnic table legs will be cut out of the 2 X6's. They need to be cut with 60 degree angles at the top and bottom as well as be 33.5 inches long. All four should be cut to this length.
Sticking with the 2 X 6's cut the remaining ones to 5 feet long and set this aside for the seat pieces.
Flip the table top over so you can attach the legs. Attach them on the inside of the cross boards you have already nailed down. Drill and bolt these to the cross boards.
Next attach the wooden picnic table seat brace which is the piece that will eventually hold the seats and goes across the width of the table. Attach them about 17 inches from the ground . After you have measure this, attach them to the outside of the legs that you just attached.
Next attach the braces. These will be cut from a 2 X 4 and cut with a 17 degree angle at the top and 44 inches in length. These attached to the wooden table center cross board. This is all the work that you will do with the table upside down so its time to flip it back over.
Once flipped back nail 2 X 4s length wise connecting to each one of the seat stretchers you've nailed. The Seats will be placed and secured on top of these. Once you nail the 2 X 4s then put the 2 X 10's on top for the finished seat. Nail them down.
Wooden Picnic Table Finish
Setting the nails, sanding and leveling are good next steps to give the table a more finished look. And to make sure nobodys jeans get ripped on a nail! Then consider the potential finish products you can use. Paints, stains and antiquing are just a few ways to go.
You might want to treat your wood or if it is a good pretreated or naturally stained and waterproof wood, you may choose not treat it, depending on the look you are going for. You also might consider buying pressurized wood so it lasts longer in challenging climates. As you can see with a bit of effort you can follow pretty easily how to build a picnic table plans.
Nothing left to do but start the grill and call family and neighbors. Your new sturdy wood picnic table and your backyard is now the picnic place to be!