I started to make these tables and post them on my local classified ad. In the past few months i have made half a dozen tables. They seem to be pretty popular. The great plans on this site have helped me make a bit of extra income to support my tool addiction.
The tables are made from framing grade lumber from blue box store. I take each piece and cut it to rough length and run it through a joiner and planner to get it nice and square and smooth to start with. I cut everything to final dimension and start the glue up.
I wanted a nice flat and clean top for these tables so having straight and square lumber helps. To make the top I edge glue the boards together and clamp. No screws or anything else required. The breadboard ends are attached with a few pocket screws.
The table joints are are done using pocket hole screws and glue. I have trouble finding 4x4 in my area so I make the legs using two 2x4's glued together. I use 3 pocket screws per joint (skirt attaches to the legs). For the cross beams, i use a dado blade to notch out the legs and cross stretchers. I find this is the most accurate and quick way to go. The cross stretchers are attached with glue and screws, and the screw holes are filled with 3/8 pine dowels and cut flush.
Once the table is all assembled, I run it through a course of sanding from 80 grit up to 220 grit with an orbital sander. Then its time to start the finishing. I use minwax pre-stain conditioner to help it absorb evenly, then 2-3 coats of minwax stain of choice. I then use 3-5 coats of minwax wipe on poly. I find this stuff to be great. It goes on with a rag, no drip marks and provides a very smooth finish.
Each table takes about 25 hours to complete.