Now that my girls have outgrown the crib that they have used, decided to re-purpose it than just discarding it. Couldn’t donate it to the thrift store as they would not take it and during my research also learnt that this kinds have been discontinued due to infant deaths.
This is how it all started, in the quest to make a coffee table from this crib. Used Google Sketchup to make the illustration on the left (above). Started removing each section one by one and measuring each side to figure out what would work and what wouldn’t.
Cut the brown plastic piece and re-positioned it, this holds the bottom 2 rails of the crib.
hot glued a piece of cardboard in the hole of the base. The mattress rested on this board in the crib form.
As I do not have a table saw this is my jig that I used with a hand-held circular saw to get straight cuts. This is one of the sides of the crib, and main flat surface (left of the picture above) will eventually become the top of the table.
Sides after the cut, the top molding piece would now be fixed directly to the legs and the middle portion (shown on the right above) will be joined to form the table top.
Dry fit on the left and on the right is my latest addition to my tools, a hand planer. Its very difficult to use a hand planer; lot of practice needed, and its not as easy as shown in the youtube videos. I had almost given up when I wasn’t getting a 90 deg flat plane surface.
Joining the 2 halfs which made the table top. Used dowels at the end, as the middle portion was too thin for anything. Also wasn’t able to get a straight cut here so filled it up with sawdust. I was collecting all the saw dust as I went along with this project, so that definitely came in handy.
Cut the side rails of the crib to size and then glued/screwed one side back, to form a smaller rail.
Nailed a set of three left-over side railings to be used under the shorter side of the table top, for additional support, but later, figured out I really did not need that extra support.
Railings turned out to be slightly short so added some fillers to the top part of the railing.
Finished the frame and the slid the top over and screwed it in again with pocket holes so that screws do not show up (easily). I could have stopped here, because this came out looking pretty good and sturdy, but after reviewing some more ideas online decided to take it up a notch.
Got the above epoxy-resin off amazon and applied it to the surface. Ordered beer bottle caps from ebay and first put down a thin coat and fixed all the caps.
Mixing ratio for the epoxy resin is 1:1, marked 2 plastic containers as A and B and then mixed in a third plastic container using a wooden stick. Once it sets it becomes clear like glass.
After the initial application, complete board with glued down caps. It dried in under 24 hrs, but I left it sit for 2 – 3 days.
Left the brush in the container with some left over stuff and it wouldn’t come off. Had to throw it away as it was rock solid. Also made a jig for the final pour to level the field and capture any run-offs, but never used it.
Final pour, lined up the edges with painter’s tape. To fix the cloudy solution at spots and to remove any air bubbles, used a propane pencil torch (another new addition to the tool set).
Just wand it over so that the heat blows the bubbles and solution appears clear like glass. Alternative was to blow using a straw (would have taken my breath away, literally)
Curing time was supposed to be anywhere from 48 – 72 hours but I table top was ready in around 24 hrs.
Run-off epoxy-resin on one of the legs, to saw it using an electric saw, was like hard plastic.
That’s it, table all done!!
Phase – 2
After using this table for about an year and half now, my wife wanted to make some arrangement so that we could make use of the bottom/or 2nd shelf. Currently its not accessible as its locked by the rails. She wanted me to open it up a little bit so stuff like paper/magazines/laptops etc can be stored there instead of cluttering the top of the table.
So I cut four rails along the longer edge on both sides. As I had to make the cuts at this stage of the project decided to sand out the complete project and change the color. So started the long and laborious process to sand down the current color.
Used a 60 grit to remove the color and then followed that by a 120 grit sandpaper so smooth out the surfaces. Next covered/masked off the top of the table and the bottom shelf which was accessible now.
Applied two coats of black spray paint and then followed up by a single coat of clear paint.
The sanded down piece and the glossy black color looks much better now than the old brown; and its way more functional too! So win-win.