If you are looking for an outdoor table that is strong, elegant, and incredibly easy to make – our new trestle-base DIY picnic table is the project for you!
This unique table really is an entirely new take on the common, boring old picnic table. One that’s not only functional, but extremely economical to create.
The entire table can be built using only 2×4’s and 2×6’s. And cutting and putting it all together couldn’t be easier. In fact, using only a tape measure, miter saw, and a drill driver, it can be created in just a few hours.
The Trestle Picnic Table – A New Twist On An Old Classic
Looking to add more outdoor seating for future farm-to-table dinners, we started to look at picnic tables as an option. When it comes to true outdoor seating, they certainly are one of the easiest solutions.
But let’s face it, most picnic tables aren’t exactly built with a more pleasing design in mind. Or, for that matter, to sit down comfortably at either. For most designs, the attached bench seating always seems difficult to enter and exit. Especially when others are already sitting down at the table.
Further complicating matters is the bulky size of most tables make them hard to store for winter. The bench and table combo together can really take up a lot of space.
In addition to those drawbacks, there is the issue of sturdiness. More than once in my life I’ve had the pleasure of sitting down at a wobbly picnic table. All the while wondering if it was going to collapse underneath me!
Designing A Stronger, More Elegant Option
With that in mind, we decided to see if we could come up with a better design for our picnic tables at the farm. One that would be sturdy, strong, easy to use and store – and look a little more unique and elegant too.
So once again, we turned to two of our favorite strong and economical building materials, the 2×4 and the 2×6. They simply are unbeatable when it comes to lending sturdiness to any of our projects.
Instead of using a typical picnic table bracing design, we decided to think a little outside of the box. In the process, we decided to merge a traditional picnic table with a trestle-style base.
After all, it’s hard to beat the incredible strength of trestle-style construction. But not only is it strong, it also adds so much more interest and beauty to the base. And as an added benefit, it allows for a lot more leg room under the table as well!
A Fun & Easy Project To Build
I have to say it turned out to be one of our favorite projects of all time. The table is just unbelievably strong. And with the slide in benches, it looks so much more unique and elegant than a run-of-the mill, everyday picnic table.
In fact, it honestly looks nice enough to serve as a table indoors or outdoors! We’ll take you through the building process below, but for those who do want complete plans, they are now available in our Etsy shop as an instant download : Trestle Table Picnic Plans
Here is a look at how the whole table went together:
How To Create A DIY Trestle Picnic Table
You can build the trestle picnic table from just (6) 2 x 4 x 8’s and (4) 2 x 6 x 12’s. The benches are easy to build as well, using just (3) 2 x 4 x 10’s for each bench.
The trestle base legs use a post and beam-style to connect together. The pass through hole for the beam is created simply by leaving a space between 2 x 4’s as you build, and not with fancy tools.
To assemble, you simple slide the 2 x 6 “beam” through the open slots on each trestle base. It creates a base that is super strong and won’t wobble. Even before you attach a few screws on each end to secure the pass through beam!
Once the base is together, the only task left is securing the 2 x 6 boards to the top. For ours, we left about 1/2″ inch between boards for the true “picnic table” look. You could also keep the boards close together to make a more traditional table top.
Last but not least was the issue of the seating for the table. Although many picnic table designs use seats that attach to the table, we opted for 2 x 4 benches that slide under the table when not in use.
Not only are they strong and sturdy, they make storage a breeze. Even better, they are easy to get in and out of. Something that can be quite difficult with most picnic tables.
Here is to creating your own unique DIY trestle picnic table, and to enjoying the great outdoors in style. Happy Building – Jim and Mary.
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