HOW TO BUILD THE PB BROOKS TABLE BENCH
(Instructions are based on one 73.5 in. long x 15″ wide; 17.5″ tall bench) If building a different size, be sure to adjust measurements accordingly). This bench works great with a 7ft table. Although the pictures below are of a longer bench for a 9ft table, bear in mind that this bench tutorial is for a shorter bench (73.5″) to fit a 7ft table.
2x6x8 pine boards (3)
2x6x8 pine boards (2)
APRON & SUPPORTS:
2x4x8 pine boards (2)
GRK Wood Screws 2 1/2″ (any brand wood screw will work; just sharing my favorite here)
Finish (I.E. paint/stain/poly) (If building for an outdoor space, be sure to use exterior poly….As a sidenote: Poly has gotten very expensive and water-based exterior poly is really hard to find. Thankfully, I found this option on Amazon. It checks both boxes: cheaper than the other poly’s and water based for exterior).
Table saw (OPTIONAL)
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NOTE: If you’ve never used a Kreg Jig, here’s a great tutorial. If you don’t have one, I highly recommend buying one. You will use it all the time in the DIY realm! And it makes builds so much easier!
STEP ONE: (OPTIONAL) Rip your boards
This step is completely optional. I like to get rid of the manufactured edge on all of my 2x’s before starting any project. This extra step gives the furniture piece a more clean, finished look and is very easy, but does require a table saw. I’ll share the widths I take them to and then explain how I do this…
For the bench top, I rip the three 2×6’s to 5″ wide. (2×6’s are actually 5 1/2″ wide)
For the legs, I rip the two 2×6’s to 3.5″ wide.
For the apron & supports, I rip the two 2×4’s to 3″ wide. (2×4’s are actually 3 1/2″ wide)
Now for How I Do This: (Here’s a great post on how I give my boards a finished look)
I’ll use the bench top boards for my example. As noted above, I want my 2×6 bench top boards to be 5″ wide. They are originally 5 1/2″ wide. I simply set my table saw for 5 1/4″ and rip one side of my 2×6. Then I set my table saw to 5″, flip my board over and rip that side of my board. Now I have a 5″ board with straight edges on both sides. Follow these same steps for your other boards, to get rid of that manufactured curved edge and achieve a clean, straight edge look.
STEP TWO: Build the legs
Cut twelve 2×6’s to 16″ long. Glue 2 boards together and clamp to let dry. When finished, you will have 6 legs that look like this…
STEP THREE: Build the frame (apron and supports) (Tip: Read “Note” at the bottom of Step Three BEFORE starting on Step Three)
Cut four 2×4’s to 31.5″ long. (Long part of the apron) Add 2 pocket holes to each end.
Cut three 2×4’s to 9″ long. (Short part of the apron) Add 2 pocket holes to each end.
Attach the 31.5″ 2×4 between 2 of the legs using 2 1/2″ pocket hole screws. Inset the 2×4 3/4″. And repeat for each section. It should now look like this….
Then attach short boards (9″) to both ends and in the middle using 2 1/2″ pocket hole screws. Again, inset your 9″ boards 3/4″. (Note: For the middle section, I turned the board to lay flat…giving it a little more support). As shown below….
I like to use clamps when drilling my screws in for a tighter fit.
NOTE: 1. Make sure all of the pocket holes are on the inside of the frame.
2. Inset each of your apron boards about 3/4″.
Cut two 2×4’s to fit between the width of the bench frame. These are your supports to keep your bench from bowing with time and wear and tear. Drill 2 1/2″ pocket holes on each end of your 2×4’s. Using 2 1/2″ pocket hole screws, evenly space these boards and attach to the long apron boards. As shown below….
STEP FOUR: Build bench top and attach
Cut three 2×6’s to 73.5″ each. Attach using 2 1/2″ finishing screws. Make sure you are screwing each board into the end supports and the middle support. Your bench should now look like this….
Again, I used clamps while attaching my top boards to get a tighter fit.
STEP FIVE: Sand and Finish
Sand entire bench with a 60-grit and then again with a 220-grit sheet of sandpaper.
Add stain or paint and at least 3 coats of poly (one more for added protection, if placing your table outside). I used MinWax Special Walnut Stain (bottom) and Annie Sloan Graphite Chalk Paint (top); along with Minwax water based exterior poly….
I love how solid and sturdy both the table and bench are. These guys aren’t going anywhere–perfect for the outdoors! And so much cheaper to build your own versus buying one from Pottery Barn and spending well over $2000.
Until next week,
Happy Building, Friend!!
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