On Your Feet, Peasant


I had an extra 60 minutes today so I leveled the tabletop, bored the mortises and reamed them. Part of me (the midbrain) likes the rough jack-planed surface now on the tabletop. But the rest of me knows I’m going to make the top as smooth and fine as the legs.

— Christopher Schwarz

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Publisher of woodworking books and videos specializing in hand tool techniques.
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16 Responses to On Your Feet, Peasant

  1. Chris, I need a prep table next to the grill in my backyard. Seeing your table completed has convinced me it would be ideal. Heavy table top and the stability of six legs on the uneven ground. Do the angled legs prevent racking of the table?

    • The six legs do help keep the top stable on a variety of terrains. The slight raking of the legs (5°) also gives the table a firm footprint.

      There are other ways to achieve the same result. But this was amazingly simple and fast.

      • jasoninoc says:

        Guest: “I see you are using your six-legged table.”
        Me: “I thought it appropriate considering the rocky terrain.”

  2. toolnut says:

    That turned out really nice.

    • I use the Veritas reamer and tapered tenon cutter. I chose these tools because they were inexpensive and easy to get.

      I do not have a dog in the fight over 6° or 12°. I have used both. Both work very well. I don’t sell or profit from either.

      I suggest you pick one that appeals to you and stick with it and ignore all extraneous chatter. I do.

  3. You know I kind of like it, may have to buy a tenon cutter and reamer. maybe for my next computer desk.

  4. Eric R says:

    Great job.
    That table would work in a bunch of different settings.

  5. legmakernc says:

    sweet , I really like it!

  6. Sean Hughto says:

    Perhaps some chamfers on the top and bottom edges?

  7. If there’s a photo somewhere, it would be cool to see how you secured the table top for leveling and flattening. From previous posts, I’m guessing the table top is about 36″ across and if memory serves your bench is 24″ wide.

  8. Brian Clites says:

    Great table! From the medieval prints you’ve shared on the blog, I can’t recall if this design is meant to be used while seated, or if it is primarily for standing above. In either case, how many people do you suppose could sit around that table? Six openings is a lot, but they’d have to be some pretty slender guys to squeeze all their legs under there.

    • Brian,

      Excellent question. Painting show a table of this size being used with people seated and standing. During the last dry-fit, I found that you could easily sit at it if you put a leg *between* your legs. That position has the added benefit of protecting your soft bits from kicks….

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