Chunky X Base Table: A How-To

chunky x table tutorial


There’s something about 4×4 lumber that makes furniture look amazing. Maybe it’s the sturdiness, maybe it’s the shape. Whatever it is, I love it! A friend of mine recently asked me to build her a new dining table, and I was happy to oblige. She liked the X-Base Pedestal table I built my sister, but wanted a rectangular shape with a heftier top. So I edited the plans a bit to make two straight bases with a stretcher, and used some posts around planked 1×12’s for a beautiful, solid table. It’s certainly heavy enough to last a lifetime!


The base uses the same measurements from Ana’s plan. I decided to use 2×6’s for the top and bottom to make it even more sturdy looking.


Another nice change this time was splurging on pretty hardware. I used 5″ lag bolts instead of screws, and it really does lend the table a professional feel.


The top was quick and easy to put together. I just have three 1×12’s planked together with kreg pocket holes, and used the same pocket holes to attach the posts. Then a few more carriage bolts on the sides help keep the posts together.


This is such a gorgeous set, and may be one I have to re-create for my own dining room! I was happy to build for a friend, and love that it will have a good life in its new home. Here is the tutorial to build your own:

 3 – 2x6x8
5 – 4x4x8
3 – 1x12x8
1 – 34.5″ 2×4 or other scrap dimensional lumber
44 – 5″ lag bolts, I chose the 1/4″ width
1 1/4″ screws (to plank the top, you’ll need a small box of 50)
2 1/2″ screws (to assemble the bases, about 30)
scrap 3/4″ pieces for spacers on the top, about 30″ long, as well as extras to add stability under the planked boards


Cut List:
– 4 – 2×6 @ 30″ cut at 30 degrees off square, not parallel (top and bottom of bases)
– 2 – 2×6 @ 30″ cut at normal 90 degrees (these are spacers for the top of the table)
– 4 – 2×6 @ 6″ (feet)
– 8 – 4×4 @ 13″ cut on 45 degrees off square, not parallel (these make the x shape)
– 2 – 4×4 @ 21 1/4″ (the center of the base)
– 3 – 1×12 @ 73″
– 2 – 4×4 @ 80″
– 2 – 4×4 @ 34.5″ (plank your 1×12’s first, then measure to make sure your 4×4 is an exact fit)
– 1 – 4×4 @ 61″ (stretcher, cut this last, after the whole table is built)


So I forgot to take process shots building the base and tops, so I’m using photos from the bench. The steps are the same, the wood will just look a bit off since I was using 2×4’s and 2×2’s. Sorry about that!


Step 1:

chunky-x-table-step1Attach the middle post to the center of the 2×6 bases with 2 1/2″ screws and glue through the bottom and top.


Step 2


Attach your X pieces. Pre-drill holes for your lag bolts, then drill them in with glue. I also used 2 1/2″ screws through the 2×6 for added stability.


Step 3


Next up you’ll add the feet. I used a 3/4″ spacing from the edge of each angle.


Step 4


Flip it over and make sure everything is attached properly. (Hooray! A real base photo) Measure the top and cut your 2×6 thick spacer, and then cut another spacer from scrap 3/4″ thick wood. I used a 1×8. This is so you will be able to see the base once it’s mounted to the top as well as to add height to the table.


Here are the bench bases with their single spacer, for an example. Since the 2×2 is smaller than a 4×4, they don’t need the additional 2×6 spacer.


Step 5-7


Attach your 1×12 planks together using glue and pocket holes. You’ll need five pocket holes on each side of two boards (the center doesn’t need any, unless you just want additional support), and then two pocket holes on each end of all three boards. Measure the width of your planked top and cut the two end 4×4’s. Attach them with glue and pocket hole screws. Measure the length (it should be 80″) and cut your two long 4×4 frame pieces. Use the pocket holes and glue to attach them to the sides, then pre-drill and screw in two lag bolts from the sides into the ends. This will keep the table top nice and tight. I decided to also use some 1×4 scraps beneath the table for additional support on the planks, since this table was going to a family with toddlers. I wanted to make sure it could withstand jumping feet! Also, I used a scrap 2×4 cut tot  34.5″ (the width of the planks) and used pocket holes and 2 1/2″ screws to attach it to the side 4×4’s. It’s not technically necessary, but since the table is so long, I wanted the center to have support so it wouldn’t sag under heavy dishes. You could even double or triple this up if you want a really solid top.


Step 8

chunky x table tutorial

Place your top over the bases and adjust to the width you prefer. You can slide them all the way to the end, like mine, or you can fit them in a bit so you can seat people comfortably on the ends. Once you have it in place (the bases will fit snugly inside the top – which is why we need the spacers, so you can see the base below the 4×4) measure for your stretcher. Cut the stretcher, then pre-drill for lag bolts and attach with glue and bolts.

To attach the base to the table, I purposely chose a wider 3/4″ scrap board of a 1×8 so I could simply screw in a few 1 1/4″ into the 1×12 planks. That way, if I need to move the table and it won’t fit in the door, I can quickly pop off the top and reattach it without changing the integrity of the joints. Just be sure not to screw in too far or they will pop out the top!


And that’s it! This table took about three hours to build, and $200 in supplies for both table and bench. I should have the bench plans up soon, I just need to make up the cut and supply lists. I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, and would love to see some chunky tables built soon!