Collapsible Table

Collapsible Table | DIY Project of Spring 2019

This collapsible table doubles as a cherry table top so it may be the perfect option for any type of small spaces.

Shopping list


  • eight 730mm x 69mm x 22mm (legs);
  • four 760mm x 69mm x 22mm (long supports);
  • six 340mm x 69mm x 22mm (short supports);
  • eight 400mm x 69mm x 22mm (arms)


  • two 460mm x 69mm x 22mm (middle section supports);
  • four 620mm x 69mm x 22mm (outside section supports);
  • twenty-two 760mm x 69mm x 22mm (slats)

Other items

  • forty 40mm chipboard screws;
  • sixty 16mm chipboard screws;
  • ±ninety 8mm x 40mm wooden dowels eight 200mm


  • six 40mm butt hinges waterproof wood glue medium grit sandpaper (120 grit);
  • wood filler (to fill over the countersunk screws) paintbrush and foam roller;
  • multisurface primer/universal undercoat;  
  • water-based enamel;
  • UV-resistant polyurethane varnish


  • cordless drill and 3mm combination countersink drill bit;
  • 8mm drill bit jigsaw;
  • belt sander or orbital sander combination square/tri-square sash clamps spatula tape measure sharp pencil

Get started

  1. Mark out 69mm x 22mm-wide areas at each end, and in the middle of the four 760mm-long supports. Then drill two countersunk pilot holes (using the combination countersunk drill bit or a 3mm drill bit followed by a countersunk bit) inside these areas.
  1. Use the 40mm chipboard screws to create two identical frameworks by fixing (gluing and screwing) the six 340mm shorts supports between the long supports, as shown.
  1. Measure 150mm from the ends of the eight 730mm legs. Use a tri-square or combination square to draw a line across all eight legs at this point and then extend this line across the wider face of each piece individually.
  1. Fix the ends of four of the 730mm legs to the inside of the framework, as shown, so they are flush with the ‘top’ of the framework.
  1. Now fix the legs to the second framework ‘below’ the 150mm mark made in step three. REMEMBER to first drill pilot holes before gluing and screwing in place. Also, use a tri-square to check that all joins are fixed at 90o.
  1. Fix the 730mm leg sections to the arm sections, also positioning the ‘lower’ arm below the 150mm-marks (made in step three), as shown. Then use the 16mm chipboard screws to fix the 200mm T-hinges flush with the ends of the arms.
  1. Position each of the swinging supports so that the leg sits to the outside of the framework. Then use a pencil to mark the correct position for the hinges along the long support, as shown. Now fix the arms to the framework at these points.
  1. Use the jigsaw to remove 10mm x 60mm sections 90mm from the ends, along with the ‘top’ of each of the swinging supports, as shown.
  1. Measure and mark (accurately!) two points at each end of all the slats, 20mm from the edges. Use the 8mm drill bit to drill 20mmdeep holes at these points in all 22 slats. Use a piece of tape wrapped around the drill or a depth guide to making sure the holes are the correct depth.
  1. Fit the dowels inside the holes at each end of all the slats, using a dab of wood glue. To make the middle tabletop section, lay six of the slats side by side with a ±6 – 8mm gap between them, and mark the positions of the dowels along the two 460mm x 69mm x 22mm middle section supports, placed against the ends of the dowels at each end. Do the same by laying eight slats side by side and then placing the four 620mm x 69mm x 22mm outside section supports. Drill holes in the middle and outside section support at these points, making sure they are at perpendicular angles. Then add some glue and fit the ends of the dowels into the holes to make both the middle and the fold down tabletop sections.
  1. Use the sash clamps to hold both the middle and outside section supports firmly in place while the glue sets (overnight).
  1. Once the tabletop sections have been constructed, lay these side by side, ‘bottom side up’ (with a 3 – 4mm gap in-between) in order to fix the 40mm butt hinges; use the 16mm chipboard screws to do this. Fit the hinges flush with the edges of the middle section first, then fix them to the fold down tabletops. Position two hinges midway and four hinges 90mm from the outside, as shown.
  1. Place the framework on top of the middle section and fix in place, as shown, with 40mm chipboard screws.
  1. The sections cut out in step 8 should sit neatly over the outer hinges, allowing the swing out arm sections to hinge unimpeded. Apply wood filler to all joints and imperfections using the spatula. Once the filler is dry, use medium grit sandpaper to finish all these areas. Then use a paintbrush to apply multisurface primer or a universal undercoat, followed by water-based enamel in the color of your choice – or simply apply a UV-resistant polyurethane varnish.