Thursday, January 18, 2018

My New Table

Dons Fuse Table

I have a Fuse 23A and I keep looking for the right replacement for the table.    Don't get me wrong, the tables that Winnebago supplies are super sturdy. They are actually made to sleep on as part of the Flex-bed solution.  They are never going to break.

But they are big, unwieldy, and heavy.   Not the easiest thing to put up and take down.  And getting around the table when set up to get back and forth to the bathroom is problematic.

I have the Porta-Legs Solution.   I have tried using the Foot Stool.  We still have and use both of these, but they are just not a perfect solution when we stop for lunch at a rest stop.

Most ideas I point out are never mine.  I am just not that creative.  Several months ago in one of the Winnebago groups I saw a person had built  a tabletop out of a wine barrel lid.   I thought that was a great idea.  Then my hopes were dashed when I saw the price for the lid alone was $150.00.   Though very pretty, it was not in the right price range. But it got me to thinking.

I wanted to solve several problems.

  • The current tabletop is too heavy.  Designed to hold the weight of a human it was way overbuilt just to put a couple of plates and glasses on.   I want light.
  • I wanted to make it easy to get around.  The square tabletop gets in the way of my stomach when I try and scoot by.  If it was round, it would not get in the way so much
  • I wanted to be able to move it out of aisle as we were getting ready to sit down.  Winnebago had done this on the small table by offsetting the pole adapter so I would take their idea as well.

Dons Fuse Table bottom

So I started looking for a top.  Not being a master craftsman I needed something mostly finished and I found it.   Home Depot had 1x24" edge glued round blanks for  $11.00.  I wish it was a harder wood than pine but it should work.  Definitely in the budget.  Strong enough to hold dinner.  Not too big or too small.  And most importantly, if it did not work out, it would not be much of a loss.

Dons Fuse Table Base

I also needed a base for the table.  Amazon comes through again.  I ordered  a SurFit High Polymer Table Base.   Why polymer rather than aluminum?  It got better ratings and I was somewhat obsessed by weight.

Now on to how I built it.   First thing I did was to decide which face of the wood was the nicest.  Once I did that  I sanded it with a fine sandpaper.  The blank was already sanded very smooth so it just needed a little touchup.   Pretty easy task where the hard part was cleaning up the saw dust.

Dons Fuse Table Base Distance From Edge

Then I attached the base.  Like I said above I wanted it offset so I placed it a couple of inches from the edge.   I marked where the holes should be by placing the base on the wood round and marking where the holes were. I used a drill to create some pilot holes.  The secret here is to put a piece of tape a half inch from the tip of the drill bit so you do not drill too deep and punch a hole through the top.  (I have learned this lesson in the past when I was in a hurry).   I secured it with some screws (#8 x 3/4") and I had a tabletop.

Dons Fuse Table centered

Now for staining it and finishing it with some polyurethane. Not my strongest suite but it came out fine.  A pro could have done much better but it looks fine.  Sonya got to pick the color so you can ask her why so grey (consultations over the color probably was the most difficult part of this project.  (Sonya's note:  Some folks don't believe in blending colors so flat grey is what we ended up with.)).

Dons Fuse Table Aisle

Dons Fuse Table Sitting twistedDons Fuse Table Sitting Centered

It works well.   It can twist out of the aisle and you can walk by.   Twisted into the center it is easy to sit at.

So for a $20.00 project we now have a better tabletop.  We will leave one of the original tabletops at the house on our next trip and store the round one in its place.  We will try it out for a while and see how well it works.   It is definitely lighter, easier to set up/take down and much more comfortable to get around.   And if I find something better on our travels, it won't hurt to replace it.


  1. Don, this looks really great! We don't use the Winnie tables for a bed in our 23A, and we also plan to keep them at home on future trips because they're, as you say, heavy and cumbersome. This table appears to be an amazing alternative. Thank you.

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