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I'm looking to make a wooden table that has collapsible legs. My current idea is just to have the leg basically fold into itself but I'm unsure how sturdy this would be. This also means that the legs are folding in two places: The joint where the leg meets the table, and again at some point in the leg.

Is this a feasible design? Is there something that would be sturdier while still maintaining collapsibility for storage? What sort of hinge would work for this build?

Edit: Should have mentioned this from the start, but the length and width of the table are both shorter than the height which is why I cant have a simple/solid height sized folding leg.

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My current idea is just to have the leg basically fold into itself but I'm unsure how sturdy this would be.

You can get around the obvious strength concern of a leg that folds in the centre by using bracing, but I think there are better ways to go about this as covered by the links below.

In addition to using fewer hinges there are a few existing designs that don't rely on them at all — instead of folding, the legs/leg assemblies slot into the underside of the top. This has the advantage of not having to fit hinges, but the disadvantage that the table isn't a single unit which stays connected (with the possibility of losing one or more legs somewhere down the line).

The first thing I thought of when I read the Question title was folding or collapsible workbenches since I collected many of these early on as I searched for my ideal workbench design. And the first of those that came to mind was the Apartment Workbench:

Apartment workbench

Apartment Workbench on Close Grain blog.

There's also this collapsible workbench on Instructables:

Collapsible workbench

Collapsible Workbench on Instructables.

The above may not look like much but the design is a paragon of simplicity, and I think this lends itself to most easily being adaptable to variations in materials and proportion.

In case you want to prioritise ruggedness and aesthetics matter less I'm also including this heavy-duty work table on the Popular Woodworking site:

Heavy-duty work table

Link.

There are a few other fold-up benches made from ply or OSB that are broadly similar to Tom Caspar's above including this one posted by Woodsmith on their YouTube channel only 10 days ago.

  • Thanks for the answer! This does look like a pretty good solution, my one issue is that my table top is smaller than the height I'd like my table leg to be, which is partially the reason that I had it folding into itself. Have you come across anything of that nature? – Karoly S Apr 22 at 21:06
  • Is the top both less in width and less deep than the proposed height? If so, darn it. And, you should have made this clear in the Q as it does in effect invalidate the entirety of this Answer! – Graphus Apr 23 at 5:38
  • Unfortunately, yes... I really should have I apologize for not doing so. Your suggestion is still really good though! – Karoly S Apr 25 at 0:00

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