Patio Table

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Build a super-solid, bar-height table that’s ideal for outdoor use

Most outdoor furniture falls into one of two categories: cheap junk that’s lucky to make it to the following spring; and better-built furnishings that cost as much as a summer cottage. But if you’re a woodworker, you don’t need to settle for poor quality, or pay a fortune to enjoy outdoor furniture that’s beautiful and durable.

The bar-height table I’m building here is the centerpiece of a patio set that includes chairs, as shown on the cover and on p. 51. I made the entire set from reclaimed cypress, which has good dimensional stability along with excellent resistance to rot and insect damage. Other good “outdoor” woods include cedar, white oak, teak, and ipe, which is sometimes used as outdoor decking.

Without altering the design or joinery details, you can adjust the dimensions of this table to suit available material. For example, two-by stock can substitute for the 8/4 lumber I used to make the tabletop frame and rails for the base.

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