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Hardwood outdoor table

Budding Contributor

Hardwood outdoor table

Finished productFinished product




Finished productFinished product1.pngStarting woodStarting wood3.pngSliding dovetail cross bracesSliding dovetail cross braces5.png6.png7.png8.pngDrawbored breadboard endsDrawbored breadboard ends10.pngPoor mans sanding boothPoor mans sanding boothDanish oil + exterior varnish finishDanish oil + exterior varnish finishDowel pinned mortise and tenon baseDowel pinned mortise and tenon baseDowel pinned bridle joints for legsDowel pinned bridle joints for legsReady for finish (stain varnish)Ready for finish (stain varnish)16.pngWas in the market for an outdoor table, was unimpressed by recent non-deliveries from larger furniture stores, and thought I'd have a go myself.  Took 2 months of research and 4 months to build, but went all in on the Bunnings stack.  Did try my local small timber dealer, but they weren't interested in dealing with me for a small order. Had a great experience with Bunnings special orders to get the F27 Boral Hardwood for the top.


Definitely my largest project to date, but wanted something that would last, to learn some new skills, and to try out some traditional joinery and avoid using any screws (and maybe save some money - lol). Didn't have the greatest workshop, spent a LOT of time on the ground using hand tools (each length of hardwood weighed ~30kgs, total weight for the table is around 220kg), but happy with the result.


It has been outside for a year now, holding up extremely well.



3m x 1.2m x 45mm hardwood top

90mm square pine base



3m x 190mm x 45mm F27 Boral blackbutt (x6) - for the top

1.2m x 140mm x 45mm F27 Boral blackbutt (x2) - breadboard ends

1.2m x 140mm x 45mm Boral blackbutt (x2) - dovetail cross braces

3m x 90mm x 90mm straight arrow pine posts (x4) - for the base

Porta oak dowels, a lot of gorilla wood glue, epoxy for knot filling, epoxy putty for gap filling, moroday black rubber to cushion the top

Feast Watson stain varnish

Feast Watson exterior varnish

Feast Watson scandinavian oil

10cm m8 stainless steel bolts to attach the top to the base (using threaded inserts)

The only thing I couldn't source at Bunnings were some high quality stainless steel threaded inserts

So, so many consumables (sandpaper, plastic, brushes, tape etc)

Also had to essentially buy an entire tool collection (chisels, sliding mitre saw, block plane, small clamps, massive clamps, hand saws, drill, drill press, drill bits, trim router, marking gauge, squares).



2k for the materials


Trips to Bunnings:

More than I can count


Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: Hardwood outdoor table

Hello @softwareburnout


Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community. It's fabulous to have you join us, and thank you for sharing such an awesome outdoor table.


The first thing that caught my eye was that mortise and tenon joint. It was very neatly done and using dowels as the holding pin was a very nice touch. That finish on the top is truly outstanding, can you please tell us the sequence of your painting technique? Now that it's built was there anything you would have done differently in hindsight? Any other tips you can share with our members would be highly appreciated.


Again, thank you for sharing with us your masterfully built traditional outdoor table.




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Re: Hardwood outdoor table

Thanks @EricL 


Surface prep was a lot of sanding from 80 grit up to 240 grit.  For the final sand I also wiped it down first with a slightly wet rag to raise the grain to ensure it was extra smooth post sanding.


For finishing the top it was a 2 stage process.  First stage was wiping on the scandinavian oil, working it in with some 2000 grit sand paper, then wiping off (using lint free rags), for 2 coats. Then because that was interior oil (couldn't find exterior), I hit it with 3 coats of exterior varnish over that (ensuring I sanded at 240 grit between coats to de-nib and also allow the coats to bind to each other).  I wasn't exactly sure if I could use these 2 products together, but they seemed both to be resin-based and I'm happy with the results (wanted something more oily for the first coat to penetrate the wood and let the colour pop). No spontaneous combustion yet.


For the base it was just 2 coats of stain varnish to get it to the desired colour, then 1 coat of exterior clear varnish over top (sanding to 240 grit in between coats).


Done differently:

I was originally going to screw steel flat bar to the underside to prevent warping, but when I got on a roll with the wood theme I switched to the sliding dovetail cross braces (and 2 vertical posts to help support all the weight).  Unfortunately that made the table slightly thicker in those 2 areas, and meant the chairs I bought were very snug in the centre location on each side.  In hindsight when I changed the design I should have re-measured the chairs to ensure clearance (and gone with 35mm wood for the braces).




Experienced Contributor

Re: Hardwood outdoor table

@softwareburnout fantastic work a credit to yourself.


I hope lots of BBQ lunches planned around that one with the whole family 

Trusted Contributor

Re: Hardwood outdoor table

Looks superb.

Excellent woodworking skills.

And a very nice looking setting for the table.


Thumbs up! 👍


Re: Hardwood outdoor table

Thanks @CSParnell  and @Noyade , appreciate the feedback.


It is part of a bigger work in progress of a full backyard renovation.  Last thing remaining is a pizza oven to get maximum usage out of the outdoor dining area.  Knowing me I'll probably have a go at it myself - I'm rubbish with stone/brick though!

Experienced Contributor

Re: Hardwood outdoor table

I'm sure there are is someone on here for advise for that failing that YouTube for your pizza oven. Otherwise check out the range at Bunnings weigh up your material/ time cost vs one off the shelf and cooking same day.

Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: Hardwood outdoor table

Hi @softwareburnout 


Once you've decided on what shape your pizza oven is going to look like, I recommend using Firebricks and Lanko 5kg 156 High-Temperature Mortar materials for safety. I recommend using these items as they are rated for use in high temperatures. As @CSParnell said, it will come down to the number of bricks and mortar you'll be using. If it looks like it will be a more affordable option, then it's worth building it from scratch.


If you have any other questions we can help with, please let us know.




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Re: Hardwood outdoor table

Good advice thanks, I wasn't the most popular person when I said I'd have the table ready for Christmas dinner (ended up finishing it in March), and we were reduced to plastic tables on the day.  Off the shelf same day cooking is definitely appealing.

Re: Hardwood outdoor table

Thanks for the advice, I'm starting to steer towards a pre-built oven, but if I end up building a base myself I'll still be looking to use heat resistant materials, so will give these some thought.

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