In honor of National Worship of Tools Day, we have a couple of easy projects, that surprisingly go together. Apparently Worship of Tools Day is a day for us to stare at, clean, appreciate and/or take care of your tools. We’re going to appreciate our tools by using them for our projects. The first one is my new favorite piece of furniture — a square coffee table, using a pallet as a base. The second is a tablet stand made from the leftover lumber from the coffee table project. I love it when I can re-purpose things and then nothing goes to waste. Now…let’s use some tools!
*a pallet whatever size you want your table to be, can be found at any number of businesses that receive large shipments, just ask first)
*spray stain or brush on stain of your choosing (I think the darker the better for the look I was going for)
*a quart of paint of the primary color you want your table to be
*spray or brush on sealant
*maybe some samples of another color or two of your choosing if you want to give your table that “this has been painted a couple of times” look
*1.5 inch wood screws
*2 inch screws
*(4) 1 x 6 x 6′ lumber of your choosing *
*(1) 1 x 3 x 6′ lumber of your choosing*
*drill with a bit for the screws as well as a larger bit for the wheels
*4 screw-in wheels
I was lucky enough to be given a cool almost square pallet (30″ x 32″), which I love. I LOVE squares. Plus, I have a couch with attached ottoman, and the square actually fits better in the space we have than the rectangle we did have. The first thing I did was fill in any places where there was missing wood because I didn’t want gaps too large anywhere. The great thing about making things that look distressed and using pallets is that nothing has to be exact. If it’s a little off, who cares? It’s part of the charm. So I measured where all my gaps were and used my miter saw to cut my 1 x 6 x 6 pieces to fill in the gaps. You may choose to have no gaps at all, it’s up to you. Just make sure you have enough lumber to do what you want and that all your wood is the same thickness. I can’t give you exacts on that because all pallets are different sizes.
Once you have all the pieces cut to fill in your pallet, you’re going to need to also cut two side pieces that will go on the ends of your pallet (also 1 x 6 x 6), and then two pieces the same length using the (1 x 3 x 6). The two 1 x 3 x 6 pieces will be what you use to screw the top section you will add onto your pallet. The sawing is almost over! The last pieces you will need to cut are the pieces that will go across the top of your table, using the 1 x 6 x 6s.
Next step is to sand all of your pieces, making sure you get the ends. A light sanding will do, just to get off the major splinters and any dirt that may be on the wood. Then stain all of your pieces on both sides. I used spray stain, which I really like because it’s a lot less messy, but make sure you are in a well ventilated area. I did two coats to make sure everything was covered thoroughly.
After the stain is good and dry, light sand your pieces again, then place the fill-in pieces on the pallet where they will be permanently. Using your drill and bit, pre-drill the holes where you are putting your screws, then screw in the wood using the shorter wood screws. Do that on both sides of your pallet. Now it’s time for the wheels. I measured three inches in and over on each corner to drill my holes so the wheels were all located at the same place on each corner. Make sure you go in far enough that your wheels will not stick out from under the pallet if they are rotating wheels. People may trip over them. Using the large drill bit, drill the holes for the wheels and screw all four wheels in.
First thing you will need to do is put together the sides of the upper portion with the piece that will ultimately be underneath it that you will use to attach the upper part to the original pallet . You can also use brackets if you want, but I chose not to do that. When these two pieces are together, they form a letter “L”. This is where your clamps come in handy — I used my clamps to put the pieces together to hold them in a right angle which made it much easier to drill the holes and screw the pieces together. Drill your holes for the longer screws into each piece and then put the screws in, remove the clamps, and repeat for the other side. Once you have your two side pieces completed, time to attach them to the pallet. Place them on each side of the pallet and drill the holes for the shorter screws on the flat piece so it will connect the sides to the pallet. Paint the sides inside (and out if you want), sand, just like before and put your sealant on and allow to dry.
Now we’re going to attach the actual table top (yay!). Put your planks in place where you want them and then pre-drill the holes on each end of the planks. Using the long screws again, screw the planks to the existing structure. You should have what looks like a coffee table at this point. Go on and paint the top, ends, and sides, sand, then once dry add your sealant. I left my table out in the garage until the smell from everything was completely gone.
Project #2 (if you have leftover 1 x 6s) Tablet Stand
You’ll need leftover 1 x 6 (at least 9 inches or so)
*drill and bit
Using the miter saw, cut three pieces for your stand. One piece is 3.5 inches (the back), and two pieces need to be 1.5 inches (the bottom and front).
Once your pieces are cut, lightly sand, and you’ll use the wood glue to put them together. Glue both the back and the front to the bottom. Once glue is dry, drill one hole in the front middle (close enough to the bottom so it can screw into the bottom piece) and one hole on the back middle (also toward the bottom so you can screw the back to the bottom as well). Screw both pieces to the bottom, and then paint to your liking and seal. That’s it! You can make several if you have enough leftover lumber, they can sit on a desk or counter top or you can mount them to the wall.
Go and take care of your tools! And use them! Happy Worships of Tools Day!
*The lumber is an approximate number and size. Depending on how big your pallet is, you may need more or less. This is what I used for mine, although I did have some scrap lumber that I already had. Just make sure all your lumber is the same thickness, fits in your vehicle and covers what you need.