Table for Two? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-30-2005, 02:11 PM   #1
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Well, I've been beavering away all week and I've finished my replacement dinette table top. Considering the amount of wood I've chewed through, "beavering" seems about right.

Some time last spring or summer, I thought it might be fun to make a table top with a clear plexi top inset that I could put pictures of camping trips under. I predicted at the time that it would take only a weekend but I never got to it until this week which I'm lucky enough to have off thanks to the auto companies.

Five days later, I'm good to go. Just have to run off a few pictures.

Furniture grade ply for the bottom. Birch I think. Rough cut maple planed to thickness. Much internal debate about the corner joints. Locking miter? Too wide a temperature extreme to keep the corners tight. Box/finger joints? Strong, but a little coarse looking. Decided on the tried and true mortise and tenon. Finish? I'm lazy. Wipe on combination colonial maple stain and urethane.

Tools were bought. Countless trips to tool and hardware stores all over the place. Even a trip to Camping World for a table bottom socket to fit on the post. (0ne side trip to Cabelas. Escaped with only a cast iron pie iron.) Oh Lordy! this is one expensive table top. I must have played with every tool in the shop but it kept me out of the pool halls.

Not fine furniture, but not awful either. The Plaid One (Norm) would probably approve. Just to explain the picture a bit, the top is sitting on my homemade downdraft sanding box. The table top itself is an inch thick, the ply is 1/2 inch (sitting somewhat loosely in a dado) and the Plexiglas is basically 1/4 inch thick.
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Old 12-30-2005, 03:46 PM   #2
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What a great idea, and your worksmanship is gorgeous! I'd love to see a photo of your new table in your trailer.

Jeanne
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Old 12-30-2005, 03:57 PM   #3
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Steve that is beautiful. Congratulations on a job well done! Alec
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Old 12-30-2005, 04:05 PM   #4
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Nice job Steve!! One question. Did you investigate as to weather you could get plexiglass with different grades of hardness so it would be a little bit more scratch resistant. I have no idea if there is such a thing?? Any way good idea and nice job.

Jerry
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Old 12-30-2005, 05:31 PM   #5
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Jerry,

The most I did was consider what sort of plastic to use. I know Lexan is more shatter resistant but it scratches easier than Plexiglas.

The plastic just lays in there so it'll be easy to change in a couple of years. There's a finger hole to push up the plastic sheet. I'll want to add/change pictures every now and again. And 1/4" is a pretty standard thickness. If I think this stuff scratches too easily I'll try something different down the road.

Another approach would be to simply cut a piece of plastic and lay it over the existing top fastening some sort of thin metal to the edges to keep it centered. But... I like woodworking and I needed a project. And I like the planning, researching and shopping as much as the doing.
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Old 12-30-2005, 07:31 PM   #6
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Xllnt!!!!
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Old 12-31-2005, 08:19 AM   #7
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I like this idea! How cool is that, an always open Photo Album.

Need to polish the plexiglass and get rid of the scratches? Check out this thread (almost at the bottom)...good information and applies to the plexi window in our trailers as well
http://www.fiberglassrv.com/board/index.ph...24&#entry166224
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Old 12-31-2005, 11:03 AM   #8
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Beatiful table, Steve. Could you make me a shelf?

The post on polishing is timely for me too. But y'know, that Legacy Post guy sure talks a lot.......
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Old 12-31-2005, 12:33 PM   #9
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Installed.

As I get more pictures, I'll just stick 'em on. I found that two sided photo-safe tape at Office Despot. Keeps the photos from scooting around as I lower the Plexiglass.

I got better as I printed more of the photos and now get an even border all around the picture.
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Old 12-31-2005, 01:37 PM   #10
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Very cool, Steve! One question... how will you keep crumbs and moisture from going down between the frame and the glass? Is it just a very tight fit?

Nancy
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Old 12-31-2005, 01:58 PM   #11
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Very cool, Steve! One question... how will you keep crumbs and moisture from going down between the frame and the glass? Is it just a very tight fit?

Nancy
I was wondering the same thing. I love the table with the pictures to look at but sometimes I am very sloppy with my coffee!!!
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Old 12-31-2005, 03:31 PM   #12
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Awesome job Now that you have all the tools... Can you please pm me the details where i can send my dimentions and the payment for mine to be built?

Now if you only found a hideing place for the tv cables and coleman oven box... you would have a sweet place to sit and eat.

No kidding Nice work steve! Im thinking of a checker table cloth to paly chess on? hmmm
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Old 12-31-2005, 04:04 PM   #13
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The temperature extremes I see meant that I needed to keep a little clearance between the wood frame and the plexi for expansion and contraction. I don't expect the plexi and the wood to expand at the same rate.

I printed out my own pictures so the occasional ruined one will mean I just print another. I've been thinking about laminating the pictures however. For the moment, the fabric placemats will have to sop up my spills.

I'm also considering a rubber edging strip if I can find one close for color. They're T shaped with soft barbs down the stem of the T. I'd cut the insert a little smaller and press it in around the edges. That would seal, mostly, the edges until I could get a sponge for the spill. Plastic T-Molding It would do double duty by keeping pencils and such from rolling off the table.

The white cord is for the shortwave receiver antenna, but I know what you mean by finding a better storage. I've been carrying around some stuff I haven't used in three years so I may do some housekeeping to make room in the closet for the oven.
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Old 01-06-2006, 01:32 PM   #14
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Steve that looks very bad I'll bet you could do a better job if you did it over.
and just so your work on the table won't be a total loss you can ship it to me...
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