i am new to wood working and just made my first wood table. I was trying to calculate how much weight will it hold on its top but i cannot reach any conclusion. So if any of you have any experience about the calculations, a rough estimation of approximate minimum / maximum weight that it can behold will be very helpfull.

The table is made of teak wood (legs and side beams) And is finished of with a 18mm plywood on top (which i think is heavy) The wood bars are of 2x2 and 1x3 and are joined only by screws (2.5~3 inches long) and wood glue. The pics shows how its joined.enter image description hereenter image description hereenter image description hereenter image description here

  • 1
    Dynamic load, or static? Placed where on the table? Will the weight always be directly down the Z axis, or will it have a lateral component?
    – LeeG
    Nov 21, 2017 at 19:37
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    This question cannot be answered accurately. The design shown uses fasteners at joints to transfer loads so their size and type is critical, At a glance this design lacks strength at connections for lateral loads and is more likely to fail from the top shifting relative to the base (rotation) than from members failing due to overload. Rather than asking how much load it can carry, it might be better tell us how it will be used and the weight you plan on and ask for advise to improve the design to meet your needs.
    – Ashlar
    Nov 21, 2017 at 19:55
  • I agree with @Ashlar. How much weight do you need it to hold? What do you intend to do with the table? It will be much easier to assess whether it is suited for its intended task than to give you an arbitrary number of pounds it can hold. Nov 21, 2017 at 22:51
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    This question doesn't really fit very well with the format of this site. It's too vague and doesn't lend itself to any kind of satisfactory answer. You might consider re-wording it, for instance to ask about the specific construction technique employed or materials used. I encourage you to take the tour again and closely read the guidelines for asking questions (available in the help menu at the top of the page, it's a circle with a question mark in it). Also, you can search for information and potentially ask about how to better utilize the site in the in the Meta section. Good luck
    – Otto
    Nov 22, 2017 at 1:30
  • As already stated any Question that asks for guesswork is likely not a good fit for here. But some points to note for you, many of the screws we can see go into end grain which is not usually a strong fixing, but you've improved on this by screwing through the 1x3 side boards at the top. However if anywhere the structure is held together only with screws that go into end grain I would add some reinforcement of some kind (e.g. internal wood blocks, metal plates) if you want this to become more rigid and resist racking forces over time.
    – Graphus
    Nov 22, 2017 at 6:33

2 Answers 2


Looking back I am amazed how strong my earliest funky furniture was. Screws and glue good. Teak, strong. Tho Teak has oils in it that can compromise some glues (I wash joints in acetone before gluing Teak). Your table, if square, on the level, can hold a non point evenly distributed load of (just an educated guess here)a thousand pounds to failure. (Stand back!) I would add sheer glued and screwed diagonal bracing or if appearance is important wider and additional skirt or plinth rails also sheer glued and screwed as opposed to butt jointed.

  • If fastened to a wall it will easily support 220 lbs. without diagonal or other sheer bracing. If the load is permanent and cabinet doors are added you might add a center support to the floor as over time the span might sag slightly under load.
    – Eric
    Nov 26, 2017 at 1:22

Purely in engineering terms, a clear teak 1 x 3 (actual inches) with a 56 inch span, loaded entirely at one point in the center and supported at the ends has a failure load of about 1500 pounds, and for a more distributed load the failure load will be at least twice that.

So you can figure something on the order of 3 tons before the side rails snap. I'd worry more about the whole thing falling over before that happens.

But I expect you've notched the side rails in order to accomodate the the spacer you've shown, and this weakens the rails enormously. Assuming a 1 1/2 deep notch, the strength goes down by at least a factor of 4.

The plywood top will pretty much prevent vertical failure of the stretcher and rail glue joints.

So I'd say your 200 kg load should be safe.

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