Buying furniture for your house can be pricey, so when I was given an unfortunate looking outdoor furniture set a few months back I saw beyond it’s current state and envisioned the possibilities. Clean lines and only a little bit of surface rust, this metal set had some serious potential. My husband and I gave it a little love by removing the old tempered glass top, giving it a matte black finish and adding a simple wooden top. This is sure to become a permanent fixture on our patio.
-a wire brush
-dish soap and water
-garden hose access
-a rust inhibiting primer ( for metal, we love Rust-Oleum)
-6 4ft. 1×6″ pine boards (this will change based on the size of your table top)
-3 3ft. 1×4″ pine boards (this will change based on the size of your table top)
-sandpaper (120 grit)
-30-40 decking screw (or any stainless steel screws)
-a miter saw (or have the home improvement store pre-cut your wood pieces)
-stain, paint or polyurethane optional
Instructions for the base:
1. Making sure you’re wearing a respirator while you’re sanding, use the wire brush to throughly smooth the entire metal surface of the table and chairs. Paying extra attention to areas with surface rust. If you’re discovering that full pieces of metal are rusted through, it’s best to not to try to rehab the piece.
2. Using a degreasing dish soap (most are) and water, scrub down the table and chairs. Rinse with a hose and let them air dry.
3. Once they are completely dry, prime the table and chairs. Let them dry completely.
4. Paint the table and chairs, then let them dry completely. See if you need another coat, if so apply another coat and let dry. We’d recommend going with two coats of paint.
Instructions for the top:
1. Take your six 4-foot pieces of pine and thoroughly sand the top and all sides.
2. On a work surface lay the pieces of sanded pine with the side you want to be the bottom facing up. Decide if you want spacing between your boards, we’d recommend spacing because the wood can swell or warp over time. We used nails placed between the boards to evenly space them. You just want it to be consistent. Make sure all of the corners are square and even.
3. Find the direct center of the wood planks, using a level lightly draw a line down the middle. Now find the direct center between each end and the center line. You should have three evenly spaced vertical lines. This will be where you attach the wood pieces to connect all of the planks.
4. Place your 3-foot pieces of pine on the lines you’ve drawn. Make sure they’re centered. Apply wood glue and glue the pieces down, using the lines as a reference point to make sure they’re not shifting. Screw the pieces in place using about ten screws for each. You want to make sure the screws are going in deep enough that they’re attaching to the tabletop but not poking through the top of the table. Repeat to the two other 3-foot bottom pieces.
5. The wood top will be able to lift off (for easy winter storage) but you can also paint the top or go over it with a coat of oil-based polyurathane which is water resistant.
Try a few or all of these techniques on your own furniture pieces. Let us know if you have more specific questions in the comments!
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