Washer/Dryer Table
Comments 13

Washer/Dryer Table Critique

Small kitchen means a tight fit.

The washer/dryer table.

With my daughter’s washer/dryer table finished, I have turned my thoughts towards Christmas and the fact that I am woefully behind in my Christmas shopping. This week is all about my day job, Christmas shopping and Christmas parties. I also need to do a post project critique on the washer/dryer table.

Why a critique?
I have not made much mention about one aspect of the W/D table design. There is no back. As designed, with input from the clients, my wife and daughter, the table was meant to slide in place. Moving the washer and dryer out-of-the-way in order to properly position a table with a back was going to be a bodacious undertaking; a task which no one wanted to attempt. Originally, I had included a back, but it was eliminated from the final design.

The table with no back.

The table with no back.

Ortho view showing very little structure.

Ortho view showing very little structure.

All tables need something to keep them rigid so as to eradicate the ability for left to right movement. My daughter’s washer/dryer table only has L-brackets to keep the table rigid and these brackets are somewhat successful. But the table wiggles.

The future plan is to easily add both an upper apron and a lower stretcher as shown below.

A better and more rigid design.

A better and more rigid design.

A front apron would be a good addition as well.

A front apron would be a good addition as well.

Adding these elements to the back with pocket screws and glue would greatly stiffen the table. If space allowed, I would have liked to add a front apron as well.

For now, this table works as constructed. But I wanted to go on record as advising some manner of a back be added to this design. I’ll add one as soon as it is practical to do so.

Getting a good fit
The photo at the top of the page shows a table which hugs the washer and dryer. I built this table in my home workshop and delivered it to my daughter’s apartment about 15 miles away.

This is challenging to pull off when a tight fit is needed. It is one thing to build something in my basement workshop to fit upstairs in my home. It is very different to build for a remote installation with tight tolerances. I know of two past instances where building things for family which did not fit, requiring additional fitting back at my workshop.

To ensure I got as good a fit as possible, I took some initial measurements and then made two templates from scrap lumber: one template for the sides and one for the top. This meant two separate trips to my daughter’s apartment, but this extra effort was critical for what ended up being a perfect fit.

I literally said a prayer as I drove to my daughter’s apartment hoping that everything fit correctly and it did.

What is next
This weekend, I’ll be back in my workshop as I begin to fabricate parts for the back of my daughter’s window seat bookcase. The back is another multi-part phase of construction where I expect some fussy fitting of the back panels. I plan an update for the weekend of the 12/20.

ONE OF MY BUDDIES on Google+ made the comment that children of woodworkers get all the good furniture. This is certainly true with my daughter. I can’t resist the “Daddy can you make me a…”

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During the week, I sell carpet and rugs for The Dixie Group. Weekends, you'll find me in my basement workshop making furniture.

13 Comments

  1. Last night my son, who is 3, saw a picture of the aumbry Schwarz posted the other day. He said, “Oh, that’s nice, can you make me one?” Sure, I said, why not?

  2. My daughter mentioned to me that she had more “dad made” furniture than anyone else. She promised not to mention it to anyone else.

  3. I think this is the first time I have seen a front loading washingmachine in an American home.
    I think you did as well as possible considering the design limitations. The only other possibility for creating rigidity would have been to create a kind of double top, Ming-style torsion box table. It would have necessitated adding height, which I can see by the utility supply hole, was yet another limitation.

    • Potomacker – the top is a torsion box, but a very slender one. I did consider drilling one inch holes in the top in order to sink the same diameter dowels through the top and deep into the sides; effectively making a much stronger connection with the sides.

      This would have meant the sides would have to be twice as thick. The top is only two inches thick so I am not sure how good an anchor it would have been. Also, the table would have to be delivered totally assembled which would have been challenging to just move into place.

      But, it is something to consider if I ever make something like this again. Thanks for the comment.

  4. Pingback: Brown Butter Maple Gingerbread Cookies

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