Cutting Table Modification, and Happy New Year!

Here’s how I resolved the question of adding storage to my drop leaf cutting table.

I kept my tracing paper, interfacing and odd fabrics like the vinyl and insul-brite rolled standing in end in boxes in the closet.  I kept eyeing the cutting table, and thinking “that’s a lot of wasted space”.  I had moved a stack of plastic drawers to the closet when I put the “new” sewing machine at the window, and wanted to minimize the amount of stuff to move when accessing the drawers.

I got some interesting ideas from PR and Stitchers Guild, but I should have been more specific in my requirements –
1. must still be able to move the table
2. must still be able to put the leaves down.

So unfortunately that left out putting plastic drawers and such underneath.  Think, think, ponder, think!  How to get shelves under it?
Wood – easy to work with, but too heavy.
PVC pipe – might be easy, but need a lot of pieces.  How messy is the goop to work with?

AHA!  What about the shoe bags where you slide the shoes in from the end?  Rats!  Too small, and wouldn’t hold up to much use.

Hmmm – what about shelves and brackets usually for walls?  Curses foiled again!  One depth of shelves is too small, the other too big so the table leaves wouldn’t drop.  And things would fall off when the table got moved.  And again, might be too heavy.

More thinking.  I wonder… what about a fabric sling?  with something to keep the shelves solid?  More like those hanging clothing shelves?
YES!  I have fabric, and would just need a few inexpensive bits.  So now to plan the dimensions….I ended up making the sling 12″x30″, with 8″ between the shelves.  And at the bottom are 2 6″ shelves notched to fit the upright.  They keep the legs from folding in too far when the leaves are dropped.  It’s fastened to the table by some cording wrapped around the legs.  I had the fabric, so I bought 2 dowels, 2 6″ shelves, and 1/4″ foam core for the shelf stiffening.

And here’s the results –

closer view of top

It’s not pretty, but it does work.  If this version ever wears out, my planned changes are to find some larger and thicker foam core for the shelf stiffeners, and to come up with a better way to keep things on the bottom shelves.  Right now it’s just some cording pinned to the sling, run under the shelves and pinned on the other side.

and here’s to a Happy New Year.  No new resolutions for me, just recommitting to some things from last year.

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