Shop Log

Making a Foot for Our Mitchell Trestle Table Base

We build this trestle table regularly, and in various sizes.

walnut Mitchell trestle table

The table in the photo above has three uprights at each end and a rail tying the ends together.  For wider and longer tables, we use four uprights on each trestle end and two rails from end to end.  For either base, we stack matched wood to create the curving, contoured, and arching foot.   Note the mortises for the four uprights and the line we’ll cut

trestle table foot on the work bench

Austin at the bandsaw, sawing the line on the trestle foot.

Sawing trestle foot wp1

Will and Austin assemble the base.  The wedged tenons of the rails passing through the center uprights are dripping glue.  We build these bases so that there is 16” from the end of the table to the uprights below, providing room for the knees.  The graceful arch of the foot is functional—creating a space for the toes.  Looking closely at the line we cut on the foot, you can see that this surface has been contoured to soften reflections and bring life to form.

Assembling trestle base wp