Concrete Dining Tables
We got an email from a homeowner in Fort Worth that was looking for a natural gray concrete dining table. He had been shopping around but couldn’t find someone to build him exactly what he wanted so he decided to see if we could help.
Our first question was whether he had the base or wanted us to build him one also. In this case he had already bought a base which is why he was having a little bit of an issue. Since the base size was already set, he needed the table top to be a custom size to fit them perfectly.
The size of this concrete dining table was 114” x 36” with a 2.25” tall lip. We do say tall and not thick as we don’t make out table tops that thick. Since it is glass fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC) it can be made much thinner as still be strong. Typically the center portion of our table tops are about 1/2” to 3/4″ thick. We then make the table top look thicker by having a drop down lip.
Most dining tables are 36” to 40” wide and range from 48” to over 120” long. When trying to decide what size you need, keep in mind that you want to allow around 24” for each person so that they are not too crowded.
Our table will comfortably seat 8 people. You might be able to squeeze a couple more, one on each end, but that really depends on what type of base you choose.
As you can see, this particular base does not leave much room at the ends, you would be hitting your knees when you scoot your chair in so it’s mostly designed for seating on the sides. The next thing to consider is the height.
The most common height for dining tables are between 28” and 30”. Since our concrete dining tables are thinner in the middle than the edges you need to keep this in mind when selecting the base height.
To get the final table height, the base should be about 3/4” shorter which is the usual thickness of the center portion of our table tops. Our drop down edge is what gives our table tops the look of being much thicker. We’ve had clients ask for table tops that look to be almost 6” thick.
Now, there is a caveat. There is the normal 28” to 30” height for the top of a dining table but you also have to keep in mind that there is a minimum height for the bottom. If the drop down lip is too deep, you are going to scrape your knees when you scoot in.
Most chairs are about 17” to 18” tall to the top of the seat and you want to have at least 10” clearance between the chair and the bottom of the table top for someone to sit down comfortably. That means that we are really limited to about a maximum of a 3” tall lip if we are going to stay in the normal height range. Any more than that and it will be a tight fit.
You can do a taller edge, but now you have to raise the height of the top of the table. Dropping the chair height is not really in the works as your legs will stick out or bend uncomfortably when you sit down.
For this project, we shot over a drawing to our client to make sure we were all on the same page with his concrete dining table build. After approval we molded it up, poured, polished, and sealed with a water based polyurethane to provide excellent stain resistance.
We loaded the table top into our trailer, drove it over and dropped it right into place. It fit like a glove and we think you can agree it looks beautiful.