StretcherDryFit-300x1991

Burl Slab Tables: The Stretcher

With the legs dry fit into the top, it was time to fit the stretcher to the legs.  I like a stretcher near the bottom of the legs, as it gives more visual weight and will get rid of any likelihood the table will rack.

We use a type of cross lap to join the legs to the stretcher:

Keep it simple and put your tape measure away, this is all relative layout.
We place the stretcher exactly where we want it using center lines marked on the legs to mark the cheeks:
Some will be tempted to use a simple cross lap in which half the thickness of the stretcher is removed from the leg and the stretcher.  I prefer to recess the lap by 3/8″ to hide any imperfections in the joint.  I achieve this recess by defining the cheeks on the SCMS with the depth stop set and kerfing in between the layout lines until I can slide the blade back and forth.

Using the bandsaw we cut a simple slot in the legs for the stretcher to fit into.  And thus the base is ready to go!