Outdoor Bar Table

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Submitted by Ana White on Wed, 07/11/2018 - 12:59
Difficulty
Intermediate
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DIY Outdoor Bar Table - free plans by ANA-WHITE.com

If you are short on space but big on entertaining, try a bar or counter-height table to seat more in less space.  

We have a small deck and need to seat at least five for dinner every night.  But I didn't want a table so large it consumed our entire deck.  So I decided on a bar or counter height table for our outdoor dining space.

But I wanted something heavy and substantial, that wouldn't blow away (or over) in the wind.  And something that didn't cost a zillion bucks. 

For about $60 in off the shelf lumber, I DIYed this -

It is sturdy.  It is heavy.  It will hold up to kids.

And it's pretty!  

Annnnnd ... it was pretty easy to build!

I used off the shelf 2x lumber.  It's douglas fir, so will hold up to elements better than pine or whitewood, but if you live in an especially humid climate, opt for cedar or whatever people use in your area for outdoor fencing, pergolas, and picnic tables.  

I used a Kreg Jig for all the base joinery.  It is a miracle tool, and you will need it for this project to attach to the 4x4 legs.  It will pay for itself in this one project, and your entire neighborhood will suddenly be your best friends, once they hear you have a Kreg Jig.  Good thing you are making a two-family sized patio table.

The Kreg Jig allows me to attach the 2x4 aprons to the 4x4 legs, hiding the screws on the inside.  

From there, we attached the cross bracking.  It's just 45 degree angles, cut on our compound miter saw.  

For the top, we started with the center board, attached it perfectly, and then worked outward.  Here we used 3" self tapping deck screws.

After a light sanding, we are ready for paint!

 

Our go-to paint is BEHR MARQUEE® - it's true one coat coverage and goes on smooth and easy.  It is a little more expensive, but I find you use less and don't have to buy primer.  Pay now or pay later right?

The color is Limousine Leather MQ5-05 by BEHR MARQUEE®.  So dramatic!

The free plans follow - do share if you build, I love seeing your projects too!

XO Ana

 

 

 

 

 

Dimensions
Dimensions shown above. Suitable for 6-8 bar stools

Preparation

Shopping List

2 - 4x4 @6 feet long

5 - 2x6 @ 6 feet long

4 - 2x4 @ 8 feet long

Common Materials
2 1/2 inch screws
Cut List

4 - 4x4 @ 34-1/2" - Legs

4 - 2x4 @ 20-1/2" - End Aprons

2 - 2x4 @ 63" - Side Aprons

Cut center support and stretcher to fit from 2x4s

2 - 2x4 @ 30-3/8" - both ends cut at 45 degrees, short point to short point measurement, ends are NOT parallel

5 - 2x6 @ 72"

Tools
Tape Measure
Speed Square
Pencil
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Kreg Jig
Drill
Miter Saw
Power Sander

Instructions

Step 1

Drill two 1-1/2" pocket holes on each end of the apron boards.  Attach to the 4x4s, centered on the 4x4 posts (about 1" on each side of the 2x4).  Use 2-1/2" pocket hole screws.  Build two.

Step 2

Repeat for the longer side aprons.

Step 3

Measure and cut the bottom stretcher and center support.  Attach with either pocket holes or 3" deck screws.

Step 4

Place the cross supports inside the table.  Mark top that overhangs and cut off with saw.  Drill pocket holes and attach.

Step 5

Comments

cocoloco182

Tue, 06/09/2020 - 07:50

Great looking piece. Q: I want to make it higher/taller. Is this possible and if so, what measurements would you recommend? Just longer legs? Would it compromise the structure if I extend the legs top be 38" - 40"?

sofiac3

Mon, 09/14/2020 - 11:04

I love this table. I changed the dimensions. I made it counter height and little shorted. The plans were easy to follow. I am new diy-er. I built the plant stand first to get my feet wet and then went all in. I also accidentally bought larger wood for the top so the table is heavy. I have gotten lots of compliments.

smgrant

Sat, 03/26/2022 - 15:22

Hi Celia,
Yes! I had to adjust the length also. It simply means calculating your total length and then cutting the side aprons to a shorter length so that when you add the 3 1/2 " from the 4x4 leg, and the overhang, you come to the 60" you want.

smgrant

Sat, 03/26/2022 - 15:19

Hello Ana, First I have to say I absolutely love your site! I've made your Mudroom and your Farmhouse coffee table, and thanks to your easy to follow, detailed plans and diagrams both turned out absolutely beautifully! I get so many compliments on them and I am actually stunned that I was able to build these projects! Now I am building your outside Pub Table, and I have a question. I wanted to make a counter height table since it takes up less room and I have a small kitchen. The legs are 34 1/2" but the side apron is 4"" (3 1/2"" really) but that means that the distance between the stool height, if I buy them at 24"" only leaves approximately 7 inches. When buying stools, I have read I need to leave between 9 -13" between the chair seat and the table. Does this mean the TOP of the table or are they referring to leg space...seat to bottom of side apron. If you could clarify this for me I would greatly appreciate it. Thank yo Ana

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