Cutting a table for a leaf?

plhjbOctober 10, 2008

Is it possible to take a long table and cut out a section and turn it into a leaf so the table can be smaller. I have a 70 inch table and I want it smaller , but I would like to make a leaf out of it also. Am i crazy or is it possible?

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Everything is possible. Perhaps the hardest part is cutting the top so that the joints are clean. (My pick would be a rough cut with anything, followed by a bearing-guided router cutter on a straight template.)

You might look at pre-made hardware for the extension (link below).

Here is a link that might be useful: Table extenders

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 4:24PM
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Your success will depend to some degree on what the table is made of. If it's particleboard or plywood then cutting into it will reveal some unsavory edges that you'll need to deal with.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 6:42PM
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If I were going to do that, first I would buy and mount the sliding and locking hardware under the table.

Then layout the two cuts----remembering that once the cut out leaf is removed, the remaining edges must match up very well. Actually, the best method of assuring that is to make a jig that spans the table and is the width of the desired leaf. The cuts also need to be made without chipping any of the new edges.

The two cuts should be in the middle of the 4 pieces of locking hardware---and the locks should be mounted the same direction on each side---so the locks function without the leaf.

Once the cuts are made---if everything still fits/works, you still need to install guide pins/sockets and apply a finish to the raw edges.

So, yes it can be done, but it will be difficult.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 7:26PM
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Take it to a cabinet shop with a panel saw. Should be able to cut the section right out.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2008 at 6:36PM
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"Take it to a cabinet shop with a panel saw. Should be able to cut the section right out."

Unless you cut from the back the panel saw will leave torn edges.

Portable circular saws (what a panel saw uses) are used good side down so the teeth enter the work on the finish side and tear out is on the back as the teeth exit the wood.

Regular shop type cabinet saws are the other way, good side up so the teeth enter into the finished side and the tear out is on the back also.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2008 at 11:05AM
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I have yet to see a portable saw on our panel saw, I'll be sure to tell my boss that the saw we have that we cut two sided melamine on with very few/any chips is portable.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 7:12PM
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