Wednesday, September 5, 2012

How to Build a Gaming Table

I have previously written about my building a terrain board for miniature war gaming, but it always helps to have something to put those terrain boards on! Now I lucked out and got a full sized dining room table at a yard sale for $5. Not everyone will be that lucky, and honestly for most games you don't need more than a 4x4 playing area, so something that big might be a waste.

Because I already have a table, I don't need another one. However, I did have to build something to hold a pair of guinea pig cages. Before one of them was on a door held up by a pair of saw horses, and the other cage was under it. Not an ideal situation. I didn't want to spend a fortune or a lot of time on it. So after searching the internet for a simple solution I found this basic workbench.

This picture, and the instructions I used, are from this link: A Cheap And Sturdy Workbench For About $20

That $20? That's from 1999. I spent about $40 on Monday evening.

And this is my pig bench. Looking at what I spent, and my scraps, it would have been very little effort to adjust the size of the table out to 48"x48" with a matching shelf below to store terrain or minis. Since my pig bench isn't going to see the abuse that the work bench linked above is going to see, I only used about half the number of screws, but even still, this is a solid (if not attractive) bit of woodwork. I also adjusted the plan to put the legs on the outside so that the cage would fit on the shelf. With slightly better planning I'd have just made the table a couple of inches wider.

So what would you need to build a table/bench like this?
Measuring Tape (every gamer should have this)
Circular Saw
Sander/Sand paper
Clamps (useful, but not necessary)
Level (useful, but not necessary)
3" screws
1.5" screws
1 sheet of plywood (8'x4', cut in half)
6 8' 2x4 boards
2-3 hours

That's it! Depending on how well equipped your personal tool box is, it may be easier to have your lumber supplier cut the plywood and boards in half. That's what I did, then I trimmed everything to the size I needed when I got home.

Game on!

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