Hairpin Legs - Tips, Tricks & Inspiration
1. Marble Side Table
DIY Hairpin Legs product feat. : 20" Hairpin Legs - Black
Casey and Bridget over at DIY Playbook nailed it with this super simple side table design with set of our 20" black powder coated hairpin legs. See how they did it here. You wouldn't think about attaching metal hairpin legs to marble would be easy, but they have the perfect solution!
2. TRANSFORMABLE HAIRPIN LEG DESKTOP
Rachel over at A Beautiful Mess, is CRAZY creative with this 2 for 1 desk design. Check out this amazing budget friendly build with a set of our Mint 28" DIY Hairpin Legs. Some plywood, screws and hairpin legs go a LONG way! Now if we could figure out where to find that pink Eames shell rocker!
3. Foyer Bench
Ever wish you could create some Socal / Joshua Tree vibes at home? Well, here you go! Natalia is super creative! You can follow her inspiring lifestyle blog at Curious Natalia. To recreate this clean modern bench grab a set of our 16" DIY Hairpin Legs and a piece of project paneling from your local hardware store. Project panel? Ya, Home Depot stocks a lot of pre-cut plywood and even has pine or local lumber planked and joined together. We like this water based polyurethane.
4. DIY Geometric Desk
With a miter saw, strips of lathe or repurposed hardwood flooring you can create amazing designs that 100% unique. 28" legs are the standard height for most project like this.
5. DIY Coffee Shop Tables
Ever go to a coffee shop and think "I would kill to have this table in my house"? That's how we feel about these tables Chill Zone Coffee in Arlington, VA. Did you know you can square up some budget friendly 2x4's, stagger them, join them together, seal them and have an amazing table? Throw on a set of our heavy duty 1/2" hairpin legs and boom, coffee shop design at home. About dialing in the that espresso...best to leave that to the pro's. :)
"How much weight can your hairpin legs hold?" or "Which hairpin legs are right for...?"
These are the two most common question we get each day by far, so we thought we'd share a little more information about them with you.
The simplest, non scientific, real world answer is this:
- If one person can pick up and move your table or desk easily then 3/8” 2 rod legs will be great.
- If your table table or furniture is a “two person lift” then go with 1/2” diameter legs.
If your table or furniture is a “two strong people lift” then go with 1/2” 3 rod legs.
We haven’t had any issue with welds breaking or legs bending under normal loads.
Let's Talk Wobble for a Minute...
We aren’t structural engineers but we know this: the taller the legs get, the more opportunity for “wobble” in the table top.There are three options to decrease wobble:
- Use a 3 rod hairpin leg
- Use 1/2” diameter rod
- Or both :-)
For example if you are building a foyer table with a slab on top. 30” - 36” 3/8” legs are common for this. A foyer table doesn’t see much action so 3/8” 2 rods will usually be great.
But if your were looking to build a kitchen island for bar stools to pull up to for eating or a stand up desk then adding a third rod and or going with 1/2” makes sense because it will get bumped, leaned on and used regularly.
Coffee tables, side tables, standard desks are usually fitted with 2 rod - 3/8” legs.
Hope that helps you select the right legs for your project. As always we are here to help, contact us for more info!
Ever since we started producing hairpin legs in early 2015, we've been excited about bringing a line of metallic hairpin legs to market for our Makers. Then, once we got rolling and started growing it took a little bit of a backseat to raw steel hairpin legs and other powder coated colors.
Yet, our great community of DIY'ers and Makers alike kept pushing us for metallic and especially gold metallic legs.
We got excited and towards the end of 2017 we went to work on finding just the right shade, finish and quality for a powder-coated finish... figuring that a 24k gold plated leg might be a bit pricey. :-)
The truth is that it's one of the tougher finishes to achieve through powder coating as it's a two step process with a chrome base layer and then just the right shade of gold applied with a clear-coat finish afterwards. When they are done just right, wow... they look amazing. The tough part about this is that the process takes a skilled hand/eye and a lot more time than a regular flat powder coated hairpin leg finish. Therefore, it costs double to get done right.
But, when they do come out right... whoa! They look amazing.
So, here's the rub... we wanted to bring these prices down for you, before listing them, but we're not to the price we wanted to be at yet. We debated not listing the legs OR doing a pre-sale to hit a minimum order quantity for a lower price. Based on more requests for them from Makers and DIY'ers, we decided to go ahead and list the legs at a price that allows us to sell them, ship them and keep a high level of quality.
If you have a customer that wants some gold legs or need them for a DIY project, you can order the 2 Rod Gold Hairpin Legs starting today.
As we grow we are always trying to bring prices down to better serve customers. In the future, we'll also be looking to add a new line of design-oriented hairpin legs. Shoot us a note if you have any product finishes you'd like to see added like rose gold, chrome, copper, etc.
We can't wait to see what you make with these beauties!
To your success,
Calling all Makers! We've been thinking hard about ways that we can give back to people that are referring others to DIY Hairpin Legs and we have something great to share with you today. We've decided to spend more on YOU instead of ads.
We're making it even easier (and more lucrative) to share the Hairpin Legs (and shelves) that you love with your friends, interns, coworkers, family and even foes with your own referral code. The best part, you'll reap the rewards by earning real cash, paid directly to you, for every person that places an order with us*.
|Share your referral code||Your friend places an order over $50||$10 For you &
10% Off for Your Friend
HOW TO GET YOUR CODE:
- Click on this link: Get my Referral Code
- Enter your email address and name
- Get your own unique referral code.
- Share your code far and wide, on Twitter, Facebook, via email, Snapchat it, get a giant billboard with it or use a megaphone. Choice is yours.
- Most importantly, enjoy your money that starts to roll in! For every person that places an order over $50 with us at diyhairpinlegs.com and uses your referral code, you’ll get $10 and your friend will get 10% off! We’ll notify you by email when the money is ready to be transferred to your PayPal account.
We hope this helps our Makers and friends earn some extra cash throughout 2017! If there's anything we can do, don't hesitate to reach out to us.
Your Friends at DIY Hairpin Legs
UPDATED: January 2nd! For the month of January, $10 per referral and 10% off for your friend from $5 and $5 off.
We've been busy at the shop these past few weeks getting all the hairpin legs out to our customers around the country and launching our new Hairpin Shelf Brackets (check those out for sure). This afternoon we took a moment to visualize where our customers orders are going throughout the USA and thought it would be fun to share a few of the cities that we have been shipping to with you all.
Thank you all so much for your support this year. We'll be making through the end of the year and can't wait to show you what we have in store for 2017!
Thirteen Days Of Woodworking: Hairpin Coffee Table
December 9, 2016
You made it! If you've been following along with the #13daysofwoodworking you've made it to the 9th day and the halfway point of this awesome Woodworking Christmas event! Wait what? Day nine isn't halfway? Oh, day 6.5 was the halfway point? Shoot. That's a missed opportunity to celebrate by those folks. Anywho, if you have no idea what i'm talking about, check out the original post for the 13 Days of a Woodworking Christmas from a few days ago where you'll find the links for the other 12 woodworking tutorials posted by a few of the web's top bloggers. Don't forget to check the fine print for how to enter the $300+ prize pack giveaway from the folks at Ryobi Tools and PaintWiz Paint Sprayers as well on that post. In case you were wondering... the secret # for my post is #HairpinLegs
On to the tutorial!
But not yet. For those new to my site, I like to give a little personality to my builds so you know there's a story behind the piece. In this case, I have an awesome sister-in-law who is a rabid Yankees fan. Which is funny because she used to do the taxes for another team in the AL East and probably let them know how big of a Yankees fan she was while onsite (in the nicest way possible). They returned the favor by giving her tickets specifically to games when the Yankees weren't playing and also with a nice framed print of their team's baseball stadium. I am not a Yankees fan. It would be more fitting if I was a Red Sox fan, but alas, I love my O's. Still, I couldn't bring myself to make a coffee table for my sister-in-law with an "in your face" Yankees logo on it with pin striping... so I came up with the next best thing as a Christmas present. Oh, and don't worry, someone (my wife) already spoiled the surprise of this being a Christmas present...
*I am merely "suggesting" you use these tools and also providing the exact tools I used for this project. You don't have to use the exact same tools as Lazy Guy to get the same results, but it will probably help. I should also mention the blue links below are affiliate links, so if you click and purchase you're on your way to supporting your favorite DIY'er.
Miter Saw (RIDGID 10" Sliding Compound Miter)
Table Saw (RIDGID 10" Job Site Table Saw)
Drill/Driver (Ryobi 18v One+ Drill/Impact Driver Kit)
Kreg Jig (K5 Master System)
Nail Gun (Ryobi One+ 18g AirStrike)
Palm Sander (Ryobi One+ Cordless Random Orbital Sander)
Clamps and Clamps and more Clamps (Assorted Bessey Clamps)
Router (optional for round over) (Makita Compact Trim Router w/ Plunge Base)
Wood Glue (TiteBond II)
Set of 4 - 16" Hairpin Legs - (Purchased from www.DIYHairpinlegs.com)
1-1/4" Pocket Screws
1-1/4" brad nails
(2) 1" x 6" x 8' board
(2) 1" x 4" x 6' board
(2) 1" x 2" x 6' board
(1) 1/4 sheet (2' x 4') of 3/4 plywood
(2) 1 x 4 x 48" Side Apron
(2) 1 x 4 x 21" End Apron
(3) 1 x 6 x 48" Top Plank
(2) 1 x 2 x 48" Top Plank
(2) 1 x 6 x 19.50" leg base
(1) 19.50" x 48" plywood
Lazier than Lazy Guy and don't like reading? Well you made it this far in the post... liar. I also took a time lapse of the build so you can check out the build process from start to finish.
Let's Get Building!
Step 1 - Walk... Err... Assemble The Plank!
Don't be fooled by this Cremesicle and blue slushie color combo here, there's nothing ice-creamy and fun about this step! There are no sunshine and rainbows in this build...well maybe there's holiday spirit.
After you cut your 1x6's and 1x2's to 48", add 3/4" pocket holes to the 1x6's to joint to the 1x2 pkanks. This was my first time using my Kreg Jig K5 Master system... and needless to say, I liked it a lot. So much so, that in the video you can see I added at least 20 additional pocket holes that were never used. Whoops.. Before you get all antsy in the pantsy and want to attach the planks for the table top, take a Snickers time out. I know this is the first step and you're already taking a time out, but this is a marathon, not a sprint.
Unfortunately, this is a hurry up and wait step. Before you attach your planks together, they need to be painted. It's too much of a pain to try and paint them once they attached. So I would recommend cutting this boards first, painting, then cut your remaining before (all 6 of them while you're waiting for paint to dry). The good news is the surface doesn't have to be perfect, so as long as things are mostly dry you can attach your planks with your pre-drilled 3/4" pocket holes with 1-1/4" pocket screws. Make sure you're assembling on a completely flat surface, you don't want any buckling or your top will be wavy. Then again... if you're making it for yourself... it's good enough for who it's for.
Step 2 - It's All About The Base
Whoa whoa whoa. We just did all of that work with the under carriage of the planks and now we're going to cover them up? Yes. Don't get sentimental.
Cut your 1/4 sheet of 3/4" plywood to length. You should only have to trim down the short side to 19.50" inches. If you're sheet isn't exactly 48" long and your planks from step 1 are slightly longer, you can always chop off the excess with a table saw or use a flush trim bit on a router. When the plywood and the planks are the same size, line them up and attach with wood glue and brad nails.
Yes, all those beautiful pocket holes are still getting covered up. Give yourself a second to hold them tight and kiss them goodbye, you won't be seeing them again. Ever.
Step 3 - When Things Get Dirty, Wear An Apron
I'll admit, I have a man apron that I'll occasionally wear in the shop. I also have a chef's apron I'll wear when I'm cooking. If you've ever fried bacon without a shirt on, you'll understand. Why you'd do that... I'm not sure, but much like the shirtless bacon fryer, your coffee table needs to wear an apron too. Cut the side apron 1x4's to length, they should be right around 48" and sit flush with the ends of the table top. Pre-drill two 3/4" pocket holes on each end, but give yourself enough spacing that the pocket holes are still exposed when you attach to the table top. I don't generally advise you expose your pocket holes outside of a private setting, but if you're in your garage, it's okay I guess. With the table top still face down, attach the side aprons with wood glue and brad nails. Then cut the end aprons to length (should be 21") and then attach with wood glue, brad nails and your pre-drilled pocket holes with 1-1/4" pocket screws.
Step 4 - I Can't Feel My Legs!
That step title is only funny to my wife and her family because their youngest sibling (number 5 of 5) would magically lose the use of his legs when it was time for him to go to bed. Then someone would have to drag him upstairs. So it's only appropriate that titling something that gives you a base for feet is dedicated to him. Any who, use that last piece of 1x6 and cut two pieces to 19.50". The screws that come with the hairpin legs are longer than 1.5" so a little re-enforcement to the base not only stabilizes the table, but gives you a little more meat to attach the legs too. I attached with wood glue and a few brad nails, the screws from the legs will do the rest.
Step 5 - Time To Get Fancy
When you flip your piece over at this point, it's very easy to get discouraged. This looks like... (_______) insert any noun with a negative connotation (Dog Doo, baby vomit, Tim Tebow throwing a football). Stay confident though. If you show someone and they do the ugh face, tell him to mind their own business, then remind them this is much like the very hungry caterpillar after he's been munching on 5 cupcakes, a piece of salami and so on right before he turns into a beautiful butterfly.
Take this time to route your edges if you have a router. I used a 1/4" round over bit. If you don't have one, you can just sand the edges over with a palm sander. Patch any nail holes or gaps you might have with wood filler and let dry. Once the wood filler has cured, come back with a palm sander with a 120 grit and sand off all of the excess filler and around 25-35% of the paint on your planks. Go back with a 220 grit and smooth out any rough spots. You want the wood grain showing through in various areas for the next step. Don't be afraid to go crazy, just remember, you want more paint showing than bare wood. Thoroughly clean the entire piece of dust before proceeding.
Step 6 - Stain It. All Of It.
Stain the entire piece, from the aprons to the plank top (say that without thinking "from the windows to the walls"). Cover the entire thing with a darker stain of your choice. I used MinWax - Espresso. Do not use the poly and stain combo mixture, stain only. What's great about all of that sanding you did in the previous step is that anywhere you exposed grain, the stain will take hold and really show throw. Not only that, but it hides those awful Yankee colors that were right in my Baltimore Oriole loving face. You can wipe off the excess stain starting where you first applied it and work your way around the table. Leaving the stain on extra won't necessarily give you different results. Remember Judgy McJudgerpants who thought your table looked like (______) in the step above? This is where you wow them. Just know that whatever paint color your first applied, it's going to darken up quite a bit. You might want to try this technique on some sample pieces. Or you might just want to toy with fate and wing it like I did. Woodworking favors risk takers! Wait what?
Step 7 - Attach Your Legs. I Hear They're Important.
One thing a good coffee table needs are legs to stand on. Seriously, otherwise you are one step away from being that college student that sleeps on a mattress that's directly on the floor and doesn't know what fitted sheets are. We're sophisticated here. We like our mattresses off the cold ground and with sheets. Standards people! Any who, I got these 16" hairpin legs from the folks at www.DIYHairpinLegs.com. The four piece, 2 rod set is typically on sale.
They give you everything you need to install them and maintain them. I've given you an awesome looking piece to attach them to. Seems like a match made in heaven. Or someone's cold garage.
Step 8 - Otter The Table...
Sorry, sorry, I got my marine mammals mixed up. SEAL the table. I use 3-4 coats of MinWax Semi Gloss poly on most of my projects. Apply the first coat, allow it to dry, and then hand sand (DO NOT USE A POWER SANDER) with 300+ grit sandpaper. The initial texture after the first coat will feel slightly bumpy. Sand the entire surface just enough to remove that texture. Clean off the excess dust and reapply. Repeat. By the 3rd or 4th coat, the surface will be buttery smooth.
Now pop the champagne and throw the confetti. You're done. Try not to throw glitter though. If there's one thing I know from having a toddler daughter it's that glitter gets every where and it will eventually end up sticking to the side of your face for several days. There's no good explanation to your co-workers as to why you have glitter all over you. Celebrating the birth of a coffee table is probably the least impressive answer. Tell them you got glitter bombed by Ke$ha.
Everyone's going back to school these days. Whether you are in college and need that epic modern desk that can survive a few moves (on the cheap) or need the all purpose homework, lego, play-dough table for the kids, this build is simple, durable and looks amazing.
Materials, Tools and Cost
- $100 - $125 depending on what you may already have.
- 4' x 8' x 3/4" Birch Plywood ($30 -$50)
- Hairpin Legs (Adult desk - 28", Kids Desk 22") ($40 - $60)
- 1-1/4" Wood Screws ($5)
- Wood Glue ($8)
- Polyurethane ($7)
- Foam Applicator Brush (in pic below)
- Screwdriver (For the tool-less out there, you could actually do this whole build with just a regular screw driver, but I cheated and used a powered screw driver :)
- Sand Paper (150, 200, 400 Grits) ($10)
Step 1 - Size Your Desk Height
Determine the size DIY Hairpin Legs you need and order those first, so we can make them and get them in the mail to you.
Most work surfaces are a standard 28" to 30" for adults. Our table top will be 1.5" thick so a set of four 28" legs will be perfect for this desk.
For the kids table I made, I used 22" legs and it seems to work well for our boys who range from 2-7 years old. The cool thing is, as they grow, we can just swap out the legs for some taller ones!
Step 2 - Size Your Desk Top
Measure your space and determine the size of your desk top.
Our table needed to be 6’ wide and 24” deep to match the peg board we have been using to hang up supplies in the playroom.
Step 3 - Pick and Cut Your Plywood
Go to your local hardware store to get your supplies and plywood cut up. Home Depot and Lowes offer a cutting service so all you need to do is tell them the size you want. (Also makes it way easier to handle and transport.)
(DIY Tip: Have the "bad side" of the plywood face out like this on the saw. Most of the time these saws have tear out and this will make the tear out on the side to be unseen on this project!)
(Way cheaper and safer than your own table saw.)
Our table top uses 2 identical pieces of 3/4” birch plywood glued and screwed together to make a super strong 1.5” thick top. So, you want to tell the “saw man” two cut both pieces the same size.
Our desk top dimensions were 72” Long x 24” Deep.
After cutting, put the two pieces on the floor and stack them up and make sure they are identical. (This will save you time later.)
Step 4 - Look for a Bow
We want a flat desk! Most plywood will have a bow in it from sitting in the rack at the store. In this picture they are bowing together. I flipped them around so they bowed away from each other. I know that's confusing, but set them up so that they flatten out when you stand on them.
I flipped mine so that they looked like to "cupping hands" ( ) when I laid them together, before I screwed them. But the desk is super flat after gluing and screwing.
Step 5 - Glue and Screw
Lay your plywood “face down” on a flat surface so that the desired surface you want as your actual desk top is on the floor or work table.
Cover the bottom of the first piece with wood glue. You don’t have to cover every inch, but be generous with the glue.
Now lay your second piece on top of the first piece.
Now we are going to take the bow out and screw the boards together.
Once you have this board lined up with each other simply kneel or stand on the plywood to compress the glue and flatten the boards.
As you are standing on the plywood, start putting your 1-1/4” screws into the wood. Don’t screw them in too deep or your screw will come out the other side.
(I put them in just deep enough to where the hairpin leg bracket wouldn't touch the screw head.)
You want to make sure you screw down the edges and corners about 1” away from the edge. This is so that you don’t get a gap between the boards.
The screws are really a form of clamping the boards together, as wood glue creates a bond so strong after it dries, that screws wouldn’t be needed to hold it together.
Step 6 - Sanding
Turn the desk top over and get to work sanding.
I gradually moved from 150 grit to 200 grit to 400 grit. I knocked the edges of the desk top off so they were slightly rounded to save the kids forearms. I also sanded the corners to make it more kid friendly.
You want the top really smooth before you seal it.
Step 7 - Seal The Top
I used some leftover floor polyurethane we had from making our DIY plywood hardwood floors. It worked just fine. Clear satin is what I recommend.
Be sure to wipe off all the sanding dust with a dry paper towel before you start sealing.
You won’t need much, 2-3 coats will be just fine. I sanded between the first 2 coats with 400 grit to make it extra smooth.
I let the first coat dry 3 hours in 95F Degree Florida humidity in my shed before the second coat and then let the second coat dry over night before I attached the legs.
Step 8 - Attach Your Hairpin Legs
Our sets of DIY Hairpin Legs come with a kit containing the screws you need and the wax to seal your legs from moisture to prevent rust over time. Be sure to do that!
I like to bring my legs right up to the edge of my tables, but some people prefer to put them inside a bit to exaggerate the angled look of hairpin legs. It's your call here!
Step 9 - DONE!
Flip it over and set up your modern desk!
(Within 2 minutes of putting it inside! :)
Modern, plywood, hairpin legs...simple, what’s not to love?
All of our legs now ship with a DIY maintenance kit, here's how to use it!
Hairpin legs are one of the most timeless furniture designs ever created and with a little care will last you a lifetime. We ship our hairpin legs to you “dirty” because the residue and oil on them from the steel yard keeps them from steel’s only weakness, rust.
Here’s what you need to do to clean & prevent any surface rust.
- Wipe down legs with the Scotch-Brite pad.
- Wipe residue off with a paper towel.
- Coat the legs with included wax and foam applicator
- Wipe off excess wax with a paper towel.
We love seeing what you make! Tag us on social @diyhairpinlegs
All The Colors!
After we picked up our hairpin legs from the powder coater and brought them back to the shop, we just stared at them...for a while!
We couldn’t believe how amazing they came out. After handling raw steel legs for a couple of years and then picking up these legs it felt like a completely different design. They feel rich. Smooth, a little glossy and perfect consistency in color, makes these legs something to behold.
Immediately new ideas for furniture started flowing because they seem to fit into so many design styles.
Personally I’m getting a set of white legs for my kids playroom / homework table. They will look super clean amidst the chaos of legos and crayons!
The possibilities are endless. We hope you love the colors we picked and can't wait to see what you create with them!