Building the New Gaming Table

After discovering the world of Warhammer 40k and later the proliferation of board games stemming from Wil Wheaton’s Table Top I have discovered a love for table top gaming as a hobby that greatly surpasses any other purely entertainment hobby I currently have.

Moving into a new place I shed the limitations of space and decided I wanted to have the proper environment to play all the games I love. To do so I needed a gaming table. And since I have yet to find enough money tree seeds or magic beans enough to buy one, I turned to making one as the next best thing with the added bonus of making it to my personal specs rather than finding one that’s “close enough.”

My own carpentry skills are minimal at best. My friend Mike and I once tried to make a smaller skateboard from a bigger one and created something that was somehow completely incapable to be placed in either the “skate” or “board” category. Mike said we wouldn’t even be able to make a 2×4. In his words we would end up with a “2×4-5-6.”

My dad however is quite skilled so I enlisted him to do a lot of the woodworking, with me there to support and guide design.

I originally wanted a large 4×6 table (standard games of 40k, big enough for full Arkham Horror) with pull-out player places and shelves underneath. The realities of moving a table that size quickly set in and I went with basic 4 legs, solid top, moulding on the edges. All in all it worked very well and after a coat of red chestnut stain, it has a nice antique furniture look to it:

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The top is sanded ply, light, strong, and surprisingly attractive.

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My dad’s design for the legs made them right angles that wedged into the corners of the table. This makes them very strong and prevents shaking or bowing as much as possible.

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The moulding on the top is actually crown or window moulding. It gives the table an attractive finished edge and provides a natural lip to prevent cards, board, or game pieces from sliding off and even a place to firmly hold a Realm of Battle should I ever buy one.

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The legs are bolted on with two decorative bolts each. This makes them removable so the table can fit through doors and down hallways.

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By forgoing shelving underneath it ended up being very spacious and it’s a comfortable 30” high.

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After all was said and done the cost was between 150-175 after stain and brushes. The largest single expense was the sanded ply, which was $49.99 the rest of the wood pieces being pretty inexpensive, especially seeing as how several of each were needed.

It was a great project and will hopefully be the home for many good gaming sessions to come!

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