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Friday, March 29, 2013

Rustic side table made with pallet wood.

Spring is here! Time for outdoor DIY projects. 

This week I've designed a shabby-chic side table for your deck or patio. Anyone can build this project with just a few basic tools and no large workshop space is necessary. I made this entire project using free wood obtained from old pallets.

  • You can make this entirely using hand tools, but it will be much easier if you have a jigsaw and a power sander. Both are inexpensive, easy to use, and will save you a lot of time and muscle aches. 
  • If you would like to try your hand at busting apart a pallet (it's quite easy to do) you will need a crowbar and a hammer with a claw for prying out nails. 
  • I used 1/2" dowels for the exposed pins. These are decorative and not necessary for the strength of the table. If you would like to include them, you will need a drill and a 1/2" bit for boring holes.
  • I used wood glue, 1", and 3/4" nails to assemble the project. The glue gives the table it's strength: the nails are just needed to hold the pieces in place while the glue dries.
  • A couple of clamps would be handy.
  • I finished my table using Spar Urethane. It's a great outdoor finish that will protect the wood from the elements.
  •  I used 80 grit (rough) sandpaper, mostly to clean off dirt, and stopped there. 

If you would like to give this project a try here are some plans:
Building it is very easy. If you are new to woodworking, maybe a new home owner who wants to get ready for outdoor entertaining this summer, this is a great project to start with. There is no need to get too fussy about any of it: it's supposed to look rustic!



Don't forget to follow me on Keek for tantalizing project updates throughout the week! Here's where this week began:


  1. I've made quite a few things out of pallet wood. If you run it through a thickness planers some of it isn't even too shabby anymore. Its wood. If you have one of these breaking pallets apart is pretty easy:


    I made this out of pallets:







  2. Awesome project, Steve! I'd love to see more pallet pieces.. We find so many uses for them around the farm that my sister actually made a blog post about a few of them! http://www.thatfamilyblog.com/2011/05/one-mans-junk-is-anothers-treasure-aka.html

  3. hey i made today a desk from discarded ply simmilar to your table

  4. Iced Tea?

    Who completes a project and celebrates with an Iced Tea? Martha freekin' Stewart?

    I think I have a late entry to the "You might be a mere mortal if..." contest.
    You might be a Mere Mortal if you shoot your final completion shot of a project with a good beer resting on the table.


    Just messin' with ya Steve. Good table.
    Even if you serve wimpy drinks on it.

  5. What a great video, just gave me another reason to be excited about this weekend...thanks for the great videos!

  6. I love recycling old pallet wood. This table is very funky and is a great homage to the pallet wood reclaim society.