Will these table legs be able to support this table design or will they need additional supporting features? I'm specifically talking about the structural integrity of the legs, seeing as how they are angled. The "V" is secured to the table and bottom portion using two Biscuits at each joint. The wood is Red Cedar (too soft, I know).

X ray table

There are cross braces in place parallel to the short ends under the table. They are 5 of them evenly spaced out.

I apologize for the poor sketchup quality.

  • 1
    Is there any sort of apron there? I would think racking down the length would be a really problem here.
    – Matt
    Nov 5, 2015 at 16:40
  • There is not an apron. There are cross supports under the table top though. I'm more concerned about the structural integrity of the legs with how they are angled.
    – Programmer
    Nov 5, 2015 at 16:44

2 Answers 2


That design will have problems with racking forces (based on what I can see from the point of view you show1). If I stand at the end of the table and push wilh a little force the legs would probably break from the table top.

Table have aprons and/or stretchers to help mitigate this. You need something to brace the legs. Take a look at this shaker style table. It was the first one I found that showed some detail under the top.

Shaker style

Image from mjolk.ca

Shaker style (the ones that look like above at least) doesn't use stretchers which keeps more free space under the table . That is an aesthetic choice and you could easily have a couple of stretchers connecting the opposite table legs.

The legs as they are now on their own should be fine however I would op for mortise and tenon joinery for your legs for both the table end and feet. That would make the leg assembly more stable. As long as part of the frame (that is not the table top) connects the legs it should be OK.

1 Using Xray view in SketchUp is one way to show us under the top without having to provide two pictures

  • Any suggestions on braces?
    – Programmer
    Nov 5, 2015 at 16:46
  • @Hooplehead24 I made some changes to be more clear.
    – Matt
    Nov 5, 2015 at 16:52
  • I edited the picture for clarity.
    – Programmer
    Nov 6, 2015 at 14:07
  • Thanks for the updates. My answer still stands even with that new information.
    – Matt
    Nov 6, 2015 at 22:49
  • If you look closely at the table in the photo, you will see a barely visible stretcher at each end joining with the tops of the legs. This is an extremely elegant table.
    – Ast Pace
    Mar 9, 2016 at 18:40

Will these table legs be able to support this table design or will they need additional supporting features?

Going by the additional detail provided in your Comment, I'm fairly sure that's enough support.

The "V" is secured to the table and bottom portion using two Biscuits at each joint.

This is your major design concern here, if I'm interpreting your intention correctly. It's important not to rigidly affix solid-wood tabletops to leg assemblies as it constrains seasonal movement — the wood of the tabletop must be free to expand and contract as its moisture content goes up and down through the year (a natural cycle, related to the humidity in the environment).

Instead of using biscuits it would be better to attach the tabletop to the cross supports using hardwood buttons (left), or more simply, expansion plates (right):

Tabletop fastener options

Note there are numerous other metal fastener options for attaching tabletops, I'm a fan of the above type as they are the simplest to install; they are also sold as "table stretcher plates" in case that helps in locating a source.

  • Good point to bring up. I missed that one.
    – Matt
    Nov 6, 2015 at 11:34
  • How would you suggest securing the "V" to the table based on the image I provided? Can I just use one of those "stretcher plates" on each side of a leg?
    – Programmer
    Nov 6, 2015 at 14:09
  • @Hooplehead24, I wouldn't attach them directly. I thought those would attach to battens running under the tabletop (that's what I thought the "cross supports under the table top" comment referred to) and that's the right way to attach legs on a trestle table, regardless of other aspects of the leg design.
    – Graphus
    Nov 6, 2015 at 15:12

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.