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DIY Train or Lego Table

Hey hey friends!  I set out on a mission a few months ago to build my now 4 year old the perfect train table to satisfy his love obsession.   I am pleased to report that he has been using the train table now since his birthday in October and he LOVES it!  Check out our new DIY Train or Lego Table!  Just in time for Christmas!

DIY Train or Lego Table by Shanty2Chic

Too legit, right??  I designed this table to work with Ikea’s Trofast Storage boxes.  I used the same boxes to design his toy storage unit and LOVE them.  They hold up well and provide amazing storage for very little money.   They come in a few different colors which allows you to customize a bit.  The build of this table is so simple!   I absolutely would recommend it as a beginners project with the help of a Kreg Jig
.  As always, I will walk you through the build below, and you can download and print the free plans by clicking HERE or the button below!

Free DIY Train Table Plans

The bases are constructed using 1×12.  You will first make your cuts for the base pieces as well as the sides and middle dividers.  If your miter saw won’t make a 12″ cut, just make one pass and then flip your board to complete the cut.

After making my cuts, I added pocket holes.  I made these using my K5 Kreg Jig
Friends… Have you put this baby on your Christmas list?  You need to.  You will thank us.

pocket holes using Kreg Jig

Most of the pocket holes you make will be 3/4″.  There will be some adjusting for the holes that connect to the top of the table because the material for the top is only 1/2″ thick.

Base pieces of train table

Side Pieces of Train Table

Mjddle Dividers for train table

Once those pocket holes are made, I attached the sides to the bases.  I used 1.25″ pocket hole screws for this part.

Wood Glue for train table

attaching the train table sides

You will have two sides that look like this…

Base of Train Table 1

The middle dividers will be added next into the base piece.  Make sure this is centered.

Base of Train Table 2

Next, I trimmed around the bottom of each base piece.  I used wood glue and 1.25″ brad nails with my Ryobi Airstrike 18g brad nailer for this part.

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trim for train table

I added the cleats next.  These are the 1×2 pieces that will hold the baskets in place.  I used wood glue and nails on this part as well.  The plans call for this part later, but I found that the 1×2 were easier to attach if I did them before attaching the bases to the top.

1x2 cleats for train table

Attaching cleats to table

I attached a stretcher between both bases at this point using 3/4″ pocket holes and 1.25″ pocket hole screws.  This will help support the top of the table as well as stabilize the two bases.  It should look like this.

train table progress

Now to add the top!  I used 1/2″ MDF for the top of my table.  Hardwood plywood is another great option.  I loved how smooth the MDF was for him to play on.  I laid the top down and put the base onto it to attach it with 1″ pocket hole screws.  Do you like my handy workbench under it?  I improvised 😉

train table progress

side of train table assembly

I also added one more tub holder to the front of my table.  I knew I would be putting my table up against a wall, or I would have done another one on the opposite side of the table.  If you are putting your table in the middle of a room, I would totally suggest that for more under table storage.

middle tub holder

support on train table

Once that was all attached, I flipped the table upright and painted the top.  I chose to use Rust-Oleum Chalked paint in charcoal.  You can find it at Home Depot.  Once it dried, I used Varathane Triple Thick Polyurethane over the top to keep it from scratching.

top of train table

I added the trim pieces next.  I used wood glue and 1.25″ nails to attach all of these.

side of train table

Now to test it out with the baskets…. Perfection!

Train Table Finish shot

I stained the whole thing using Varathane Dark Walnut Stain from Home Depot to match the rest of his room.

Varathane-Dark-Walnut

I used my Silhouette Cameo to create the labels for the baskets.  I LOVE this machine.  Ive had mine for years and use it all the time.  It’s one of my favorite inside “tools” 😉

Vinyl for tubs on train table

Middle Basket Holder Train Table

And here it is… All finished up!

DIY Train Table by Shanty2Chic

DIY Train Table by Shanty2Chic BIG

Thanks so much for stopping by guys!  Let me know if you have any questions at all and have fun building it!

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20 Comments

  1. AJanzen on September 29, 2018 at 11:01 pm

    Can you please tell me if you have any recommendations for bins. My husband just built this for our son’birthday. I ran to ikea today and purchased bins only to find they don’t fit. The plans otherwise were great! I now have 9 bins that don’t fit.

    We build furniture regularly, so we aren’t amateurs. Can you advise…thank you!

  2. Marianne on August 25, 2018 at 2:29 pm

    Great idea but your plans are very much off. The bins are much too small for your dimensions. Wish I had read the comments before building. Also, we had issues with the screws going the screws being too long and having to shorten them, and ruining several pieces of wood/mdf in the process.

  3. www.EasyWoodwork.org on May 4, 2018 at 11:50 pm

    I built my own train/lego table using the plans at www. EasyWoodwork.org – highly recommended you check those out too. They are detailed and super easy to read and understand unlike several others I found online. The amount of plans there is mind-boggling… there’s like 16,000 plans or something like that for tons of different projects. Definitely enough to keep me busy with projects for many more years to come haha

    www. EasyWoodwork.org

  4. Dani C on April 4, 2018 at 1:17 pm

    This looks amazing! I am a complete beginner. Do you mind listing all the tools you used for this project? I don’t even know where to start.

  5. Michael Minella on March 6, 2017 at 2:59 am

    Thanks for the post. This was exactly what we wanted for my daughter. However, I agree with some of the other posters that the dimensions are a bit wide for the bins. I figured that out after creating the sides but before creating the middle bracket so I was able to fix that one. Thanks again for the plans! https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/91bbc5c41f741a92315ad2b3ee8b975b347c0e5ba4278fdd395a6d25bb06d280.jpg

  6. Tiffany Reagan on January 5, 2017 at 7:16 am

    LOVE this project! I’m a beginner, and I found these plans to be very easy to follow. I built this train table, complete with bins, for my two young boys. They play with it every single day. Thank you for helping me with my “DIY Christmas” this year! https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/54c6ac66788c0320b993ec6dbc33041f1b170a0c1fbcad983bafb2439d26cc2e.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/1d38f094e72dbc7d61b4edf486578fbb38c32807212d03353eb21bd9ac21061e.jpg

  7. Chris Lee on December 7, 2016 at 4:19 pm

    Any advice on where and how many brad nails go into the trim?

  8. Jenna Spadt on November 17, 2016 at 12:36 pm

    Anybody have any theories why the Trofast bins I ordered are too small (not wide enough for the slot)? We built this exactly as the directions state. I know lumber measurements are inconsistent depending where you live (we learned that on another build), which is ridiculous. We got our lumber at Home Depot and ordered the Trofast that are 16x11x9, etc, whatever was linked above. I don’t think they sell any wider ones. Will have to jerry rig it to fit, which I don’t really want to do. Ideas?

    • Bonnie Keller on December 23, 2016 at 12:17 am

      We have the same problem. I think there is an error in the plans. :-/ the bins are too small to be supported

    • Michelle Brunton on December 29, 2016 at 10:36 am

      I’m sure this is way too late for you, but this happened to us, too. We adjusted by cutting additional lengths of 1×2 and using them to widen the middle divider. Using 1x2s in the front and back of both sides of the divider was enough to attach the cleats and made the buckets fit perfectly.

  9. Ben Grisinger on October 1, 2016 at 10:45 pm

    This is a really easy project to build. I made a couple of minor mods to mine by adding a third set of rails and getting rid of the center baskets.

    This was my second of these tables to build. I found it a lot easier to cut a 1 inch and 3 inch spacer to line up the basket rails.. That probably saved me almost an hour on the build.
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/eb66439c2b377237c5410bce8d2bd0229213e1b4fb196fa3e88f9961b689e4ca.jpg
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/c1b174309a8cf5c392298d668f4709f26ec649d31e1bbde8df273fa3187996ca.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3a5e659d3b5d43097fb02a3af24253c3d7b07d265d8f7fc1a43e8baf5c95621e.jpg

  10. Corey Graft on September 17, 2016 at 4:26 pm

    Officially finished with mine. Thank you for the plans! The table is a hit with my little nephew. Kids (of all ages) at his birthday party SWARMED it.

    If I build this again I will DEFINITELY Paint the MDF board ( I actually used plywood) BEFORE staining! This was a huge over-site on my part & cost me a bunch of time taping & cursing myself for being a man who doesn’t read directions.

    FYI the plans for the grey chair came from Anna White, The train is the Conductor Carl 100 piece wooden train set. & the wire baskets are from Walmart.

  11. Rhonda on December 12, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    I love it, I have been looking for a table to put a doll house on and this is perfect for her monster high castle, all the dolls and accessories. Thanks for the Idea.

  12. Renee McNemar on December 10, 2015 at 11:24 am

    Could you share where you bought the train track and other table top items? They fit perfectly on the top and I love everything about this!

    • Aykut kozandağı on August 13, 2016 at 2:53 am

      you can find aliexpress just search train set

  13. Kristen on December 10, 2015 at 4:47 am

    I love it, it is perfect for Legos too (which my boys are obsessed with). Can you tell me what sizes of the Trofast boxes this is designed to hold and how many of each. Thanks so much, this project is definitely on my to do list!!! Thanks again for another great project!

  14. Dani on December 9, 2015 at 7:50 pm

    Beautiful!
    Can you share the material cost? I did not see it posted anywhere on the plans. Thank you!

    • Ben Grisinger on October 14, 2016 at 7:38 pm

      It cost me $91 to build this, factoring the cost of wood conditioner, stain, rags, stain brush, tack cloth, paint, brads, glue, and pocket screws.

      • Dani on October 14, 2016 at 8:22 pm

        Thank you!

  15. daisyandus on December 9, 2015 at 5:25 pm

    Thank you for sharing this!

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