I need a bench for our kitchen table, and am trying to teach myself basic joinery, so I'm attempting to build one from some scrap pallet wood.
The wood is nominally 1x4 and I think is probably pine, though that's a lesser concern. As I'm new to this, I'd like feedback to ensure the design itself isn't critically flawed.
The expected load will be various combinations of my three kids (ages 9, 6, and 2). They all fidget, though the only one I expect will jump on it would be the 2 year old.
The top connects to the legs by a series of through mortises holding the outer planks in place. The inner plank is held by a dado that notches into a bit of wood acts as a spacer (I'm not sure if this is properly a tenon or not). This serves two functions: it widens the seat slightly, and minimizes the chance that spills will accumulate food gunk between the planks of the bench top.
The thinnest place the wood gets is at the half-laps which connect the legs together. I've tried to mitigate this by compressing the half-lap between the tusk and the shoulder of the tenon, though I don't know how effective this will be:
In the short term, it looks like it'll be ok - I'm currently adding the lower struts as there was some racking when we tried it out without them and my kids started to fidget.
I'm a bit concerned on how long it's likely to last, and if it's probably going to break, any tips on making the next version more durable would be very welcome.