HomeProjects
DIY Modern Concrete Coffee Table

John Malecki

DIY Modern Concrete Coffee Table

John Malecki Builds a Sleek and Modern Concrete Coffee Table

Projects
|
9
min read
|
Jun 29, 2018

DIY Modern Concrete Coffee Table

John Malecki Builds a Sleek and Modern Concrete Coffee Table

My grandfather and my father both worked on road crews and did an excessive amount of concrete work around their homes when I was younger. As a big kid, I spent half my childhood hauling wheelbarrows full of cement around helping them with their projects around the house. 

I’ve always been drawn to concrete projects, so it’s been on my list for a long time to do some furniture that utilizes concrete in the design. When a client asked for some concrete in a custom build, I jumped on the chance to get some practice and I made this Concrete Coffee Table for myself!

As you’ll see in this video, I spent a solid chunk of time on the first concrete slab that I ended up not being able to use. After some research and a long cry, I took another crack at making a slab and my second slab worked like a charm. The end result turned out better than I could have imagined -- so check it out!

This post is sponsored by Timberland Pro. Affiliate links are posted on this page. For more information on my Affiliate disclosure, check out my Disclosure Page. 

Project Overview

How to Build a Modern Concrete Coffee Table

  1. Try your best and throw the entire first concrete slab away -- That’s what I did, anyhow.
  2. Build the Real Concrete Mold
  3. Mix Cement, Spray, and Fill Mold
  4. Once Dry, Remove from Mold and Slurry Coat
  5. Sand Concrete Slab
  6. Prepare & Weld the Base
  7. Clean & Finish Metal Base
  8. Seal the Concrete & Finish

What You’ll Need to Build a Concrete Coffee Table:

Materials

  • Metal Tubing
  • Self Etching Primer, Enamel Finish
  • Concrete
  • Kilz Concrete Sealer

Tools

  • Welder
  • Orbit Sander
  • Angle Grinder

How to Build a Concrete Coffee Table: The Step-by-Step

Build the Concrete Mold

Get started by building a mold for your concrete slab. In the first portion of the video, I made a handful of mistakes so you don’t have to. I built the mold with countersunk screws, paste wax, and caulked the edges to avoid leakage. The wax helps release the caulk at the end.

Mix Cement, Spray, and Fill Mold

Once the mold is made, I mix my cement. For my second go around, I chose GRFC, which is a glass fiber reinforced concrete: a mixture of portland cement, sand, fiberglass shreds, and an acrylic hardener. I started by spraying a ¼ inch layer of cement into the form then added the fiberglass reinforced mixture by hand. Smooth this over, cover with plastic, and allow it to dry for about 2 days.

Once Dry, Remove from Mold and Slurry Coat

Once dry, remove your concrete slab from the mold. You’re likely to have a few imperfections, but you can use a slurry coat to fill in small holes or cracks.

Sand Concrete Slab

Once your slurry coat is dry, you’re going to want to go in and sand rough areas by hand to 80 grit. Give the whole slab a quick sand with that 80 grit before switching to an orbit sander, working from 150-400 grit.

Prepare & Weld the Base

Once the slab is sanded, it’s time to build up your metal base. Start by cutting your metal tubing to size, beveling the edges where welds will occur. Clamp to the flattest possible surface and tack your welds first to ensure everything fits together nicely. If it does, weld together all the edges. Once cool, grind down unsightly weld lines with an angle grinder until they’re flat.

Clean & Finish Metal Base

Once built up, clean all your metal with acetone. Spray a self-etching primer on the metal and choose a matte enamel finish to top it off.

Seal the Concrete & Finish

Finally, you want to seal your concrete. I used long strokes of Kilz concrete sealer to give it a nice streak-free finish. Once dry, attach the top to the base with construction adhesive. Boom - you have yourself a modern concrete coffee table.


If you liked this project, check out some other videos and projects!

Download the Plan

Want to try this build out for yourself? Download the digital plan now for step-by-step instructions, measurements, and a detailed look at how to punch this project in the face.

Projects
|
9
min read
|
Jun 29, 2018
|
Sponsored by
John Malecki

I used to be an offensive lineman in the NFL, Now I run my own furniture business and am completely self taught. In my videos and posts you'll see a variety of wood and metal work as well as some tips and tricks. Enjoy!