How to Prevent a Table Top From Sagging
A table without sufficient support on the underside of the tabletop is prone to sagging over time under the weight of frequent use. The legs and apron support the tabletop at the corners and along the outer edge, but the center portion of the table often needs a brace to prevent the top from sagging. This is especially critical because the center of the tabletop often holds the heaviest load. Any scrap lumber may be used because it won't be visible when the table is in use.
Flip the table over so the tabletop faces down and the legs stick up in the air.
Measure the width of the tabletop between the apron.
Cut a piece of 2-by-2-inch lumber to fit the width measurement within the apron.
Apply a bead of wood glue to one edge of the 2-by-2 and set it in place in the center of the table. Tap the board in place with a hammer if the fit is tight. Allow the glue to dry according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Drive 2-1/2-inch wood screws through the 2-by-2 to secure it to the tabletop; space screws about 3 inches apart. Drive an additional screw at an angle through the 2-by-2 and into the table apron on each end.
Measure the space between the 2-by-2-inch board and the table apron; the measurement runs perpendicular with the previous measurement, along the length of the table.
Cut two 2-by-2-inch boards to fit the space between the existing 2-by-2 and the table aprons.
Apply glue to one side of each board and glue in place, centered on the existing 2-by-2. When finished, the three 2-by-2-inch boards form a t-shape. Allow the glue to dry.
Screw the 2-by-2-inch boards to the table top with 2-1/2-inch wood screws spaced 3 inches apart. Drive a screw in at an angle at each end of the 2-by-2s to secure them to the table apron and to the existing 2-by-2.
A former cake decorator and competitive horticulturist, Amelia Allonsy is most at home in the kitchen or with her hands in the dirt. She received her Bachelor's degree from West Virginia University. Her work has been published in the San Francisco Chronicle and on other websites.
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