My ex-marine uncle helped me build the modern farm table and benches. We bought pine from Lowe's. Not all of the pre-cut pine slabs fit the exact dimensions from the modern farm table and benches plans. We knew some of the wood would have to be cut again. A Lowe's worker was kind enough to use the store saw to cut some of the wood into the dimensions needed for the table and benches. He measured and remeasured.
Once in my uncle's garage, we first dry fit the furniture. My uncle started with the table. We dry fit the table on its back (in other words - we assembled the table upside down without drilling the table together). He then remeasured all of the wood for the table (while on its back). He wanted to be sure that all pieces would fit, once we started to actually assemble the table with drills. We did the same for each of the two benches.
Then we buffed out any dark marks or stamps on the individual pieces of wood. We did this by hand and not with an automatic tool. That part was BRUTAL.
Next we conditioned the wood. Wood conditioning is necessary, because pine stains unevenly. We waited 3 hours before applying the first coat of stain.
We applied the first coat of stain. Our stain was a mix of early american and golden oak. I did not intend for the table to come out as dark as it did. We mixed more of the early American stain than I had intended, because the table came out darker than I expected.
We waited in beween coats and we assembled the table and benches in between the first and second coat of stain.
We applied a second coat of stain to the assembled table and benches.
Then we applied polyurethane to seal and protect the stain.
After the polyurethane, we used wool to sand out any bubbles.
After the table and benches were assembled and everything drilled in place, we put wood putty in the places where holes were drilled.
Then, we stained the wood putty. The wood putty accepted the stain very well.
We built this table during the second week of August 2011. The project lasted between 28-30 hours over 5 days.
Make sure your boards of wood are fairly free from cracks. After inspecting them we put several boards back.
I love my table! I'm always complimented on its beauty. My materials cost around $230.00. I built this table, because the farm table and matching benches I wished to purchase totaled $2,000.00. Thanks to my ex-marine uncle, I have a fabulous table to last a lifetime. I mention his ex-marine status, because the military taught him perfectionism. Building a table with in 100 degree heat with a perfectionist was tedious and hard work. However, it clearly paid off in the end! Thank you Uncle!