Shane Hoopfer
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Long hiatus away from games so I figured I should get off my backside and contribute something useful. So here is a simple guide to build a 2 piece table top you can place over the kitchen table for game night. Mine is 4'x7' but you can make yours however big or small you like. Same principles apply.

Before I begin. I am NOT a handyman I should never be allowed near anything with a rotating blade of death for the safety of myself and others. So here are all the tools I used...

Power Drill - well duh

Electric staple gun - Doesn't need to be electric but it's a world easier to use especially if you are by yourself.

Pliers - To remove any staples that didn't set right or you embed in your leg.

Hammer - To bang in the staples so they are snug.

Most people will have all this already except the electric staple gun. A regular staple gun works fine, just not as satisfying.

Supplies I had to buy... (note: All prices are in Canadian Pesos so convert as needed)

Two 4x4 1/2' sheets of velvet for the game surface - $50 cut to size
note: Had I gone with a simple felt or velveteen it would have been less than $20. But I wanted something that looks like I give a poo.

Six strips of leather 6" x 54" - $9 cut to size.
note: The nice folks at Fabric Depot weren't too busy so they were kind enough to cut the leather in strips for me

One sheet of 4x8' 1/2" thick MDF cut into two 4'x3 1/2' pieces $22
note: Your hardware store should be able to cut this for you. If they can't go somewhere else! Or use your fancy table saw you master craftsman (why are you reading this if you are a builder?)

Three 8' long 2"x2"'s cut into strips to fit around the edges of your table (sorry you have to math a little) - $6
note: Again have the hardware store do this, or your neighbor who is always working in the garage. (You know who I mean, that guy who is missing a thumb. Ya him.)

Box of screws 2 1/2" long should do. $4

Box of Staples 1/2" long $3

Step 1: Lay out your sheet of fabric.

Try to get it flat as you are going to lay one of your sheets of MDF on it.

Step 2: Lay sheet of MDF on fabric.
note: tug around all the edges of the fabric to get it nice and tight as you don't want big folds in the fabric. The good thing about MDF is it weighs a lot and will let you do this with ease.

Step 3: Staple the 'you know what' out of your fabric to the underside of the board. (Seriously staples are cheap)

Step 4: Repeat steps 1-3 with other piece of fabric and sheet of MDF.

You should end up with something like this... (Neat trick velvet changes color depending on the light position)

Step 5: Staple the leather into one side of your 2x2's
note: the first side you staple will be the side facing the interior of the play surface so remember to hammer the staples in after you gun them.

Step 6: Drill the 2x2(s) into the top of the table. (this is why we only stapled one side. So you can move the leather out of the way while you are drilling. Also IMPORTANT drill a small guide hole before running the screw in. Please do this as nothing will make you want to throw things more than splitting your wood because you were to lazy to put the guide hole in.

First side wall drilled in...

Step 7: Drill the side walls in. Same as step 5 and 6

Step 8: Staple the 'you know what' of the leather to the outside of the board. Then cut off excess leather as you see fit. (Probably a good idea to hang onto it.)

You should have something that looks like this...

Step 9: Drill etc. the same way on the other side.

Step 10: Staple all the excess hanging stuff to the bottom of the board. Again staples are cheap. Go nuts.

Step 11: It is possible if you used screws that are a little too long they may be poking out the bottom. Just cover them with those dollar store felt pads for leveling furniture. Or if you own a dremel (Well la-dee-da Mr. or Mrs. Fancypants) you could just cut off the pointy bits.

Once that's done you pretty much have a 2 piece gaming table to slap on the kitchen table (My kitchen table (not pictured) is 3 1/2' x 6' so the overhang I have is a non-issue.

Step 12: Optional (But sheer genius imo) Grab a 10 foot long strip of 1/2" wide magnetic tape ($8 at the hardware store) and cut two 4' strips and tape them down to the two sides that connect. (Hammer in a couple staples too for fun) What this does is hold the two pieces together will a little bit of grip so it won't separate or move around during play, but doesn't make it harder to pull apart and store later on.

There ya go. Done! You have a gaming table that you can hide away. Project costed just under $100 Canadian Pesos. You could probably do this for $50 pretty easily or anywhere in between. It took about 4-5 hours of total labor to do and I wasn't exactly rushing. All appendages are still attached as well! Win win!

This was actually easier than I anticipated to do. Is it 100% professional? No. But it looks fine and the velvet surface is nice. Someone with legitimate skills could make this look much nicer but of course that person probably shouldn't be coming to this post for building/leather working tips.

Have fun!
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