Side table project - Building the wooden frame [Step 2]

Last week we looked at the first step in making our bedside table – getting the dimensions, design right and cutting the Teak wood legs to the desired measurement. This week, we will look at fixing the legs together to form the table frame. I have not used any specific joint to fix up the legs. All that I have used are just screws and adhesive to strengthen the joint a little bit more. 
Building the frame for side table
Side Table Frame

Tools / Accessories used

  • Star head screws (2 inches length). The screws need to be long enough to go deep into both sections of the legs being joined
  • Star head screwdriver
  • Fevicol SH
  • Electric drill. At this point, I would want to reiterate that having an electric drill at home will come in handy both from a DIY standpoint and also in getting some minor repairs done. If you want to get into DIY, you need to grab one drill immediately.
Required tools
Tools required
As I mentioned, I have used only the screws to join the legs together. Before driving the screws in, it is ALWAYS recommended that you drill a pilot hole.This will enable you to easily drive the screws in, prevent splitting of wood, and will act as a guiding hole for precisely driving the screws. The hole is drilled across both the surfaces that are being joined. The cumulative depth of the hole should be slightly smaller than the length of the screw. With the pilot holes in place, ensure that you screw both the wooden legs together. To add more bond, smear the surfaces with adhesive.

How to drive screws in
Drill pilot holes
I used two screws to secure each of the joints. Considering I had 4 vertical legs, and 8 horizontal ones (or 8 joints requiring 4 screws each), I required a total of 32 screws to complete the job. The below pictures are the work in progress snapshots of the legs being fixed. You may want to go back to the first photo on top to visibly see how the two screws are used to join the pieces. The screw heads are visible which may be a downside to it. However, the darker shade of stain that I intend to use will eventually blend the screws with the background.
Work In Progress - Side Table
Work in Progress
So, here it is - The Side Table frame. The next step is for me to stain the legs and look at how I would want the top to be covered. Glass, laminated plywood, decoupaged plywood, or painted (I mean the art kind of painting) plywood are some of the options. You can also throw in your ideas and I will see how that can be implemented too.
Side table do it yourself
The side table, almost ready to be used
I am going to be spending most of this week staining the wooden legs. And of course there is this long, boring and tedious task of sanding the surface. Most probably it will be a busy weekend and so I plan to use up the weekday early mornings to try and complete it. And I hope I will be able to put up the details of the staining process for you to see next Monday. Do leave a comment on what you think about how this project is progressing.

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  1. Good post Somu. What is your workspace like? Do you have a work bench? Did you use any clamping?

    1. Hi Satish, I have no dedicated work space. I mostly use the guest bedroom or the balcony to do my stuff. No workbench and clamps. Usually sit on the floor and work and use my legs to hold things in place :) But yeah, need to use clamps going forward to make life easier :). Thanks much for your comment.

    2. Hi Somu, been following your blog for a while. Good stuff. Here's a link for a workbench which I followed to build one for myself:
      It beats sitting on the ground anytime. I also used 6" nuts/bolts for all the joints instead of screws so its fully dismantleable if you don't want it around. Weighs a ton though

  2. Hello Somu, what kind of wood do you use for a project like this? Where do you source the wood from?

    1. Hi Adil,

      For this one I used teak wood (About 1inch x 1 inch). For all my other projects I have only used 12mm and 19mm plywood. I normally pick up all my materials from the local plywood store (Chennai). Sometimes I know what I need. Sometimes I see something and wonder if I can make something. That's how I chanced upon the team wood legs and so thought would make a side table. Good thing is, I take the liberty to walk around the plywood shop. So it gives me an idea of what is available.

  3. Interesting comment by Charlie, since I am building exactly the same workbench RIGHT NOW!! Am done with the frame and will work on the side stretchers, shelves and top during this week. Turned out quite well, but the only issue was that plywood available in India is SO UGLY, that you need to sand the heck out of it before it starts becoming usable as uncovered surface. And most of them have this ugly black company stamp on at least one side, which you need to carefully hide. But once you take the effort to sand it (a sander is a must have. Hand sanding will kill you), it looks pretty good and is REALLY strong. I would be happy to send my sketchup drawings if anyone is interested.

    But I digress! Great table design and build Somu! I will wait with baited breath to see what you do to the top and shelf. It has become my fascination to see what people do to make plywood look good! And knowing that the two of you are an 'Arty' couple, I am awaiting some nice twist to this ta(b)le!!

    1. Hi Sripad, I know it has been very long back, but if you still have the Sketchup drawings could you please send it over to

      It will be highly useful.


  4. Hello Somu,

    How i can identify the quality of wood which type of wood you will suggest in and if possible provide me best wood companies name

    Rosy De souza

  5. I will also make some recommendations based on personal experience and what I feel is the general consensus of the scroll sawyers I have discussed the matter with. power tool reviews


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