Tutorial: Tree Slice Side Table With DIY Legs Made of Lamp Pipe

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This is my favorite DIY furniture project so far! I made it with a chunk of wood from a mulberry tree. The legs are DIY too--my new version of industrial pipe legs that I made using steel lamp pipe and brass fittings.
I have a special fondness for "live edge" furniture, a style where the natural edge of the wood is included as a design element. When I began my furniture-making journey, I was looking for ideas for furniture that I could make, having only basic skills, few tools, and not much money . Well, the good news is that simple tree slice tables like this are rather easy to make and are inexpensive.


The lamp pipe legs are my new take on the popular industrial pipe furniture/legs. They are made by screwing together lamp pipe and fittings. These are stand-alone legs that can be used other furniture projects, too!
I got my piece of mulberry tree free from an ad on Craigslist. It was roughly 15 inches by 17 inches wide. The first thing I did was take the bark off using an old chisel and a hammer.
Next, I had to decide if I wanted to flatten the wood to the same thickness throughout. When I got it, the tree chunk was not cut to a "flat," uniform thickness. It was about 4 1/2 inches thick on one side up to 6 1/2 inches on the other. Sometimes this is just fine with me, being uneven, but if using the lamp parts legs I decided it would be easier if the wood had the same thickness throughout. This way I could make all the legs the same length.
So I made a simple router flattening jig and used a trim router to level the stump. (Please remember that this part of the project is optional!) Also, a hand planer can be used to flatten wood as an alternative to the router flattening method. If your piece of wood is close to being uniform thickness, you will probably be able to even it out with a belt sander (or palm sander/random orbital sander).
After flattening with the router and flattening jig, I sanded with a belt sander, then sanded all over with a palm sander and by hand. The sides of the tree slice especially took a lot of hand sanding to get into all the grooves and crevices.
After sanding, I finished my mulberry tree slice with Minwax polyurethane.


The lamp pipe legs were super easy to make. First, I cleaned the pipe to remove oil and milling marks, then sealed the unfinished steel pipe with Minwax Wipe-On-Poly. I cleaned the brass flanges and brass ball feet, then screwed the leg parts together. I got all the parts for the legs from Grand Brass, an online lamp parts supplier. Ordering information is included in the link at the bottom of the page.
The last part of the project was attaching the flanges of the legs with screws to the bottom of the tree slice.


For more photos and tutorial details, be sure to check out the link below.
Suggested materials:
  • Piece of wood   (free/Craigslist)
  • Chisel   ((not sure))
  • Hammer   ((not sure))
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Jen Panguluri
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
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Frequently asked questions
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3 of 8 questions
  • Mark pope Mark pope on Jul 29, 2016
    How many hours would you estimate this project took to make?

  • Angela C. Angela C. on Sep 23, 2016
    How did you attach the legs? I have a clock that was made from a slab and is completely finished. I just need to add legs...how exactly were the legs attached?

  • Pat Pat on May 26, 2020

    Such a beautiful piece of wood but why cheap metal sticks for legs? You can get really nice ones at home depot or lowe's. Remember, a tree gave its life for that table, it deserves better.

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  • Hannah V Hannah V on Aug 05, 2016
    SO gorgeous!

  • TIna Queor TIna Queor on Aug 19, 2016
    Beautiful work ! I have a "slice" of wood like that, larger but not huge. You gave me the idea that I might be able to use it as a small dining table, as my dining area is tiny. My concern is the wood is very heavy. I was wondering how well are those lamp pipe legs holding up to the weight of the wood? How stable are they say if you move the table around? This looks like the perfect project for my slab of tree and would like to know how yours is holding up

    • See 1 previous
    • Cynthia Whitney Cynthia Whitney on Jul 23, 2017
      You can buy a variety of legs at big box building supply stores if you want something sturdier.

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