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Thread: Rules of thumb for structure strength?

  1. #1

    Rules of thumb for structure strength?

    Can anyone recommend a source for ways to estimate table leg sizing (and other structural elements) based on expected load? I'm planning out a new dining table (cherry top, maple frame, trestle design), but I'm a bit concerned about frame strength.

  2. #2
    Im not sure I follow. Is there some design feature that is going to require the legs to be extremely slender/thin? Generally speaking most tables that follow a design esthetic will have a leg far stronger than any load a table will ever see. Perhaps post a sketch of your design/idea. You may be way overthinking it.

    If your doing something highly creative and outside the norm your only options would be to engage with an engineer to run calculations which would be ridiculously expensive or to build a model/mockup (or several if needed) to work through your design.
    Sometimes I just want to look at pretty pictures,... Thats when I go to the Turners Forum

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    If you are concerned a particular design lacks strength, don't be afraid to incorporate hidden steel elements if you need it to look slender. Otherwise, increase your member sizes until you feel comfortable. Finally, find an older similar piece and look at how it is holding up. Cheers

  4. #4
    The U.S. Forestry Service has many publications on wood. The one which should apply here is:

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