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.

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.


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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  1. There’s so many different size trofast boxes/bins. Can anyone share which size boxes and how many of each to get for this table?

  2. Measurements are wrong for the bins size. Not sure if Ikea changed the size, but new measurements and blue prints need to be posted. Lots of people making this mistake.

  3. I was reading comments about the trofast bins no longer fitting the table. Have you since updated your drawings?

    Just double checking before we buy and build.

    1. Once you add the cletes for the buns to actually rest upon they fit well it is the sane with the diy toy storage plan they have listed. The measuresnt are just the space between the side boards before the bin closes or rails as i call them are added.

  4. Where can I find the plans? I am unable to click where the plans should be! Can anyone help me? I’d love to make this for my kids for Christmas!

  5. Hello, what are the final dimensions of the whole table? Before I ask someone to make this for a gift, I need to make sure it will fit! Thanks!

  6. Thanks to all the comments that talked about the bins not being wide enough for the dimensions. Perhaps they changed sizes since these plans were published, but thanks to your comments I believe I have worked out the changes that need to be made in order to use the new Trofast bins that are 16.5″ in length. The table width needs to be reduced from 37.25″ to 36.25″, so for every cut that measures 37.25, change it to 36.25 and then change the 35.75″s to 34.75″s and you should be good. On page 5 of the instructions where it shows the MDF, the left side will now be 36.25 and along the bottom will be 14.75, 17, 14.75. As long as my math is right, if you make those adjustments, you can still use the Trofast bins and make this table work. I’ll be building this tomorrow for my son’s Christmas present, so I will post an update if I find any other changes that need to be made. But just in case someone is doing the same as me this weekend, I wanted to get this posted.

    1. I’m so glad you posted this! I’ve bought the bins for this build, but haven’t gotten around to messing with the plans to account for the change in size of bins. Thanks!!

    2. Why didn’t you edit the actual plans or at least put this information in the post above? Not everybody reads the comments. So now like everyone else I have boxes that don’t fit the table.

    3. So glad you posted this. Unfortunately, I didn’t even know there were comments and just built it to the specs for someone, and the measurements were wrong. At least I was able to adapt a little and make it work, but this need fixing or a lot of people would make the same mistake. Thank you for sharing your experience and new measurements.

  7. 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!

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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?

    1. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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!

  14. 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!

    1. 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.