So a few months ago I sold my large table saw station because it was just too big. And here I’m showing you how I’ve made my biggest table saw outfeed table to date. Hypocritical? Well, not really. This new shop layout has opened up a lot of doors for what can and can’t be done in the shop. Because all of the tools are on one side of the shop (long direction) I have pretty much half of the shop to dedicate to egress, cords, and light/camera stands. There is no way this table saw outfeed table would have worked with the old layout.
The main reason I’m making this outfeed table is not necessarily for the table saw. Yes it will serve as an outfeed support but I’m more motivated by the fact that I really don’t have a work bench or a decent place to work on anything. I’ve done a lot of research on different outfeed/assembly table designs and was really close to buying materials to make a nice 48” x 48” assembly table until it dawned on me to reuse some wall cabinets I just took off the wall.
These cabinets are 27” wide and 30” tall. I’m not a big fan of cabinets at all but I figured they would be a good starting structure to build upon for this table. I’m building it upside down as it will be easier to figure out what materials I will need to make this work. The goal of this is to get a useable shop project and spend as little money as possible. In the background you can see a piece of primed plywood that is 48” x 59”. I’m going to use this as the top so I made my lower stretchers 4” less than the 59” length of the top. To make sure the stretchers were perfectly flush with the bottom of the cabinets I clamped some scrap 2x4s to them as a reference surface. Several screws through the cabinet wall into the 2×4 secured them.
The face frame of the cabinets sticks out by about 3/16” from the sides. This gives a consistent reference surface for the construction. Both lower stretchers are attached the same way.
Before I attached the casters I wanted to stack up my materials and see what combination would work. Here you can see that the height of the casters plus the 3/4” plywood top and another 3/4” plywood piece makes it the perfect height that I’m looking for. I used my box beam level on top of the saw and a ruler to make sure I was 3/8” below the surface of the saw.
With the material combination solved I ripped that extra piece of 3/4” plywood and used it on bottom. This seemed like the easiest place to add 3/4” in height. For the casters I’m using a cheap $4 per pair set from Lowes. They don’t lock and they all swivel. I have the same casters on both of my other mobile carts. With them screwed down I can flip the table over.
Here’s the “scrap” piece of plywood for the top. It was left over from my French Cleat Drill Charging Station and I really had no use for it so in the name of not spending much money I used it.
I wanted to use the full 59” but the 48” width was a bit too much for the 27” width of the cabinets. So, I ripped 8” off to bring it to 40” wide and was instantly reminded of why I want an outfeed table.
The 8” that was ripped off will be ripped in half to make the top stretchers. I still had the stop block setup on my miter saw from cutting the lower stretchers so I was able to cut the top stretchers to the same exact length.
To make the rip cut I set the top piece on the base. That was much better!
I didn’t want screw heads through the top of the table so I drilled a bunch of pocket holes on the upper stretchers to attach the top later.
And these are screwed on the same way as the bottom stretchers. One of the cabinets has a bad twist to it so I had to spread the cabinets apart to get one of the top stretchers in place referencing off of the face frames. I’m using my Jack Clamp to easily spread the cabinets apart.
Here’s the the top screwed down. My only cost was buying two 2x4s and two caster sets. Everything else was stuff I already had. I really like how simple this design is. You can salvage junk wall cabinets from various locations or get them pretty cheap on Craigslist and do the same thing. And the middle space can be customized in many ways. I think I’ll eventually make a bank of long, wide, shallow drawers for hand tools but you could easily make this space whatever you want. Maybe an inclosed area for an air compressor?! Either way you can build this project to your needs.
Here’s a shot of it in place. This article was actually posted a week after completing it so for those who are concerned with access to my French cleat wall I actually keep the table turned 90 degrees from the way it is in this picture which allows access to the wall from the miter saw area. I can also keep it a foot or two away from the table saw and access that area that way.
And a view from the other end of the shop. Even with the large outfeed table I still have plenty of room on the left side of the shop.
And of course its light weight and on wheels so it’s easy to move.
And lastly, this is the reason why I made it 3/8” lower than the table saw top. When using table saw sleds it will be at the perfect height to provide support to the runners without having to make dedicated slots in the outfeed top. The height doesn’t affect ripping stock on the saw either.