Turn railway sleepers into a coffee table

I was lucky enough to uncover a whole pile of  Rhodesian Teak railways sleepers that someone had been using for garden steps and was throwing away. Throwing away - who throws away Rhodesian Teak...!  Having now seen this project I so wish I had put them aside to make this coffee table.




4 pieces of reclaimed wood
8 L- and angle-brackets
8 of 3,5 x 30mm cut screws
8 of 5 x 75mm cut screws screws
4 casters with screws
Tape measure and pencil
Carpenter's square
Circular saw
220-grit sandpaper or sanding pads for Orbital Sander


Measure and mark 1 metre on each piece of wood and cut with a circular saw. Use a carpenter's square to mark a straight line before cutting. Two pieces of the wood will become the top of the table, while the other two will be the bottom.

Place two of the cut pieces of wood next to one another, and measure the width. They should measure approximately 40cm wide. Using the excess wood, measure, mark and cut four pieces to your measured width. These pieces will become the sides of the coffee table.

Line up one of the side pieces to one end of the top pieces. Using four L-brackets, attach the pieces together with 30mm screws. Repeat on the other side, so that both side pieces are attached to the top. Lay the bottom planks on top of the sides and drive 75mm screws through the long planks into the side wood pieces.

Attach the casters using 35mm screws. When securing the caster, position it so that when you rotate the wheels, it doesn't extend beyond the edges of the coffee table.

Sand the surface with 240-grit sandpaper. If the finish is very rough you may need to start with 120-grit sandpaper and finish off with 240-grit sandpaper. Before varnishing you can add a stain for added colour, but Rhodesian Teak has a gorgeous colour once varnished.