How To Make A Table From Pvc Pipe – Woof. It's been a while since I posted an Ible! I finally decided to use PVC again for an office project and since I get a lot of questions about PVC in my inbox, I decided to share how and what I did.
As stated in the title, this tutorial will show you how to build a VERY large table out of hollow doors with PVC pipe and brackets. They can be used for anything such as craft tables, train tables, light tables or as a ‘kids table' for a garage sale or even a family dinner. That is entirely up to you. We needed ten of them and we use them as a table. This was the first thing we built.
How To Make A Table From Pvc Pipe
We could go to Costco and buy a bunch of folding tables for $39.99 each, but this one looks sleek and stylish, has a paintable top, and is really soft. Best of all, it comes in HUGE, 36” D x 80” L. Hence the nickname “Mega Awesome Super”.
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As mentioned in the introduction, I used PVC furniture materials. This was mainly because I needed 4 way plugs, table tops and flat covers. The rest could have been plumber grade but I was looking for stability and ‘insertion depth' is fine.
Again, I ordered all my parts from Formufit (www.formufit.com) because they have a wide range of PVC construction parts. You can also find their stuff on Amazon.
To keep costs down, I used pipe fittings because although they are more attractive, sharper and stronger, furniture pipes can be expensive to transport. I used pre-made home depot pipe, for a total of four (4) rods (or 40 feet) for $3.60 per 10′ rod. Pipes are cut to length with the following quantities:
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As for the assembly steps, instead of showing you our abandoned engineering office and the greenhouse we're moving into, I'll show you how many things come together in my SketchUp drawings. For the graphics, I used SketchUp objects that can be downloaded from Formufit.
The first thing you'll want to do is attach it to the first of the two sides of the PVC frame using tees, 4-way glands, end caps, and table tops as shown in the attached photo. The fitting position is shown in BLACK and the pipe size to be used is shown in RED. This will be “SIDE 1” or the left side of the table.
I recommend dry setting first, THEN take everything apart and reassemble using PVC cement. As many of you know, once you have cemented the PVC, it will not separate.
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Apply PVC cement to the inside of the fitting only at the ‘stop' point of the fitting. Make sure the parts are properly seated, then press the pipe into the fitting and hold for 30 seconds to solidify the weld.
NOTE: Many people (including Formufit) will tell you to use this on the end of the PVC pipe and inside the fitting, but I have found that this is not necessary. NOTE: Continued: If you don't want to use PVC cement (because it's dangerous indoors), use a screw between where the pipe and fitting meet to hold both in place. You can see more about this in the previous PVC 101 Iblem. ANOTHER GOOD NOTE: I tried to line up the plumbing marks so they were facing the back of the table (the back is where the 4 way glands were). That way they won't be too noticeable and you don't have to wipe it off with acetone if you want a clean look. I did what is shown in this demon wrong. learn from me
The next step is the same as before, but you want to create your “PARTY 2”, or the right side of the table, as a mirror image of PARTY 1, so that the connections to the 4-T port. the other way, back.
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Attached is another diagram showing the arrangement of pipes and fittings where the pipe is RED and the fittings are BLACK.
Now it's time to make the ‘BACK' part of the table very simple. For this step you will need a table header, an outer header and two crosses, all of which should not be used yet. Combine them with long pieces of 30-inch pipe to make something that looks like the top of a telephone pole.
When you install the ‘center strap' for the PVC cement, lay this flat on the floor so that everything is level and your pipe is exactly the same.
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Insert the pipe ends from the BACK on each SIDE 1 and SIDE 2 to get something as shown in the diagram. Again, I recommend dry jointing to make sure everything is in place before applying the PVC cement.
When you are comfortable with the dry fit, take them apart and apply PVC cement to the connectors on SIDE 1 and attach the REAR pipes to the 4-arm T-arm on SIDE 1. Quickly check that everything is at the right angle. Press together and hold for 30 seconds.
Then apply PVC cement to the connectors on SIDE 2 and release the BACK pipes to the 4 way glands on SIDE 2. Immediately make sure everything is at right angles. Press together again and wait 30 seconds.
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A hollow door has an outer frame and various slats that (in the vertical position) move along the horizontal plane of the door. The remaining space between these slats is filled with cardboard (attention), foam, or nothing.
Since we couldn't see where the slats were, I thought it was a hit-and-run situation where our table covers would be attached to the door, whether it was a sheet or a piece of fluffy cardboard. Where there is cardboard, we want to use a piece of drywall to attach the cover to the wooden wall or door. Here's how we do it:
Once you decide where you do/don't need an extension, make sure all the “test screws” are removed and place the PVC pattern behind the table top and line up the table top rows with the pre-drilled holes.
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NOTE: All of this can be avoided if you use a single primary port. I have a budget of $25 per table because I don't, but alas, I am a cheap and cheap person.
Finally, insert the screws into the table covers and the door/screw inserts. Now you have a complete, upside down table.
Finally, flip the table over and (if I've described myself correctly) you should have a large, solid table that works perfectly.
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You can finish the table with a nice paint or stain if you want. We decided to keep ours ‘natural', but water stains look crazy on thin wood, so we recommend a waterproof stain or paint.
As with any project involving PVC and finding parts, you can make any modifications to meet your specific needs. The doors are shorter, so you can easily change the length of the 30 pipe sections to 24″ or 28″ to accommodate shorter doors. You can also increase the height of the table by increasing the length of the pipe under the table by 3″. Covers to the most suitable height for a standing table or bench.
I hope you enjoyed this Ible! Let me know what you think in the comments and I'll make the appropriate corrections/edits/corrections! My 2, 4 and 6 year olds love this sensory play table. I like the fact that you can switch tubes and get water or sand (or whatever!) but not both at the same time. Maybe I'm just a little OCD, but I've never wanted a gaming table with water and sand on it. My kids would transfer both parts with water and sand, and I think I would keep changing the sand.
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I saw this idea on Pinterest via Southern Bell DIY and modified it to add a pipe at the top for the funnels.
I provided a few extra pieces of pipe and elbows so the kids could make different pipe arrangements.
It's really fun! We added aqua blue and a few drops of food coloring to make it look good, although we don't always do that. He didn't get his hands dirty at all.
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I bought two tubs, one just for sand and the other for water or other things because we don't store it with water in it. We can fill it immediately with colored rice! Or dried beans or small seeds. Lots of possibilities.
But dry sand is also fun with funnels and tubes on the table!
UPDATE and TESTS: Thanks to everyone who liked this
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