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Game Table Construction Plans

Gaming / Project Table Plans

Before starting a project like this one, its important for you to clearly define what the end
product will be used for. In my case, I wanted to build a multi-purpose table that could be
used for both war gaming and robotics. These purposes require a table that is both very
sturdy and has lots of storage for the associated materials.
All of the components used are standard stock lumber / fasteners with the exception of the
Piano hinge which usually requires a special order from your DIY store.
The table features the following components:

8 foot by 4 foot playing surface that is hinged along one of the long sides to allow access to a
6 inch deep storage area. The hinged top also allows the tabletop to be propped open and
used as a drafting table my sons robotics team uses this feature when they are in the initial
design stages.
A bookshelf at one end of the table
Approx 70 cubic of storage under the table thats hidden by sliding doors
The top surface of the table is edged with quarter round molding to prevent dice from falling
off and to allow clip-on features such as moveable cup holders to be attached to the table.
The edging also acts as a frame to hold sectional terrain in place.
Building Steps
Table Top Box

Table top: 1 8 x 4 sheet furniture grade plywood (use the best you can find for the table top
as youll be looking at it very often)
Bottom: 1 8 x 4 inch sheet of plywood
Siding: 1x6 Lumber (2 lengths of 97.5 and 2 lengths of 49.5 all ends mitered to a 45 degree
Internal support 1x3 lumber (4-6, 8 lengths) I used 1x3 because its what I had on hand,
the key is dont skimp on the bracing.
8 of Piano hinge (added later)
4 inch plywood 8 inch squares
Attach 2, 8 and 2, 46.5 pieces of the 1x3 lumber to the inch plywood sheet (I used a nail
gun with 1.5 inch nails)
Attach 3, 46.5 inch lengths of 1x3 lumber as cross supports every two feet. These will also
serve to help segment storage areas in the table top)
Place the plywood with its attached support frame on a flat surface. The supports should be
on top.

Affix the 1x6 siding to the supports the defined lengths and mitered edges allow the siding
to go around the plywood frame. Also use a nail gun to fix the mitered ends to one another to
ensure a tight fit.
Attach the plywood squares in each corner in full contact with the plywood bottom (on the
inside of the box). These squares will be used in anchoring the legs. I used both wood glue
and screws to attach the squares
Go around the top inside of the box and mark at 2 foot lengths inches down form the inside
top edge. Attached scrap lumber to act as support for the table top at those points. Leave one
of the long sides of the table top box without any bracing (thats where the hinge goes).
The table top is not attached yet

4, 36 lengths of 4x4 lumber these need to be cut exactly the same so if you dont have the
right tools you should ask the lumber vendor to do it for you
Top Siding, 1x6 lumber (2, 73.5 inch lengths and 2 37.5 inch lengths all ends mitered cut to a
45 degree angle, 1 length of 36 inch for internal bracign
Brass L Brackets (8)
Bottom Siding, 1x3 lumber (2, 73.5 inch lengths and 2 37.5 inch lengths all ends mitered cut
to a 45 degree angle)
Flip the table top box over and mark the spots where the legs will be attached (each leg will
be placed 1 foot in from the 4 foot side of the table and six inches in from the long side the
table top sits of a 6 x 3 leg structure
Put the table top to the side
Attach the 1x6 and 1x3 siding to the top and bottom outsides of the table legs so the 1x6
limber is flush with the top and the 1x3 lumber is flush with the floor.
Insert the 36 inch 1x6 at the center of the top leg bracing
Internal support attach along the inside of the top and bottom siding length of 1x3 plywood
to further support the legs, The support should fit snuggle between each lag and the siding.
This support help stabilize the legs and prevents them from moving
At this point youve got a partially built tabletop box and leg frame. If you are NOT
building the table in its final location I suggest moving the parts to where if will be set up
now and then completing its construction

Place the table top box onto the leg structure and affix with L brackets (2 per leg). Its
important to use screws to attach the legs with L brackets as it allows the table to be taken
apart to facilitate movement
Table Top
Place the inch plywood tabletop. It should fit snuggly and be supported by the scrap
lumber you attached to the inside of the box earlier. The top of the plywood should sit
flush with the top of the box frame edges.
Test fit the Piano hinge. You may nee to trim 1/8 of an inch from the table top to make sure
the hinge fits.
Remove the tabletop and make any required rip cuts to let the hinge fit.

I cut the table top into a 6x4 section and a 2x4 section so it would be easier to handle
and I didnt always have to lift the whole table top to get access to some of the storage.

Attach the hinge along the inside of the table box (make sure to cut the hinge to match the
your table top sections if youre flowing the advice mentioned above
Attach the hinge to the top of the table top and youre almost done
Attach inch quarter round molding along the top of the box siding this is very useful for
keeping Dice on the table and attaching things like sliding cup holders and such.
Under Table Storage
This part of the exercise should not feature a set plan. Each builder should take into account
their respective hobby needs and plan the storage space out accordingly. In my case, I needed
a open area with a minimum dimension of 24 inches square to store our robotics team robot.
Storage Components
The book shelves are a simple box frame built on the inside of the table legs and are roughly
29 inches wide. I used inch furniture grade plywood and made the shelves 12 inches deep.
The frame is attached to both legs and tabletop. Once attached in provides a significant
amount of extra support. For our purposes this is where we do the heavy work on the bot
The lower level shelf is again inch plywood cut to fit to lower frame of the table (37.5
inches wide and 73.5 inches long. Notches were cut to accommodate the legs and bookshelf
unit. I also put additional shims under the center line of the bottom frame to help support the
weight of anything put on the lower shelf. Sagging bookshelves are a pet peeve of mine.
The upper shelf was made with simple 1x2 lumber supporting the inch plywood platform

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