For my graduate degree, I took a course this summer through St. Catherine University's Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) program on content creation and the maker movement in public libraries. For my final project, I wanted to create a lazy susan that I could use when playing board games (with mechanics much like the deluxe version of Scrabble). However, this could certainly be used for a variety of purposes!
Check out the short video below to see the tabletop lazy susan in action!
Lazy Susan in Action.mp4(516x290) 21 KB
Step 1: Gather your materials.
1 2’ x 2’ x 15/32" sheet of plywood (for surface)
1 2" x 8" x 8" cut piece of board (for base)
1 6" lazy susan turnable (I purchased this one at Home Depot.)
1 12-pack #6 x ½" flat head Phillips wood screws
4 washers (see disclaimer below)
Disclaimer: I discovered when attaching the top of the lazy susan turntable to the plywood that the heads of the wood screws the turntable packaging recommended were too small for the holes! Purchase either wood screws with larger heads or washers to rectify the issue.
Optional Tools Needed for Rounding Corners:
rounded object to trace desired edges (I used a small bowl.)
sawhorses and clamps for workspace
finishing sander (or sandpaper wrapped around a block of wood)
1 sheet 60 grit sandpaper
Optional Materials for Finishing:
1 sheet 220 grit sandpaper
1 tack cloth
1 can clear water-based Minwax Polycrylic protective finish
1-2 foam brushes
Step 2: Complete required wood preparation.
Cut a 2" x 8" so that it is a square for the base of the lazy susan. (TIP: I found a clearance piece of wood at Home Depot that I asked them to cut for me since I don’t own the proper saw for such a task.) On the underside of the 2’ x 2’ x 15/32" sheet of plywood, measure the midpoints of the four sides. Connect the midpoints with two straight lines. (You will use these lines to line up the plywood to the top of the lazy susan turntable later.)
Step 3: (Optional) Round corners of surface.
I wanted to round my corners so that game players wouldn’t get poked or scratched while the lazy susan is being turned. Find a rounded object to create the desired degree of edge roundness. Using a pencil, trace the rounded object to mark the rounded edges on all four corners. With your safety goggles on, use the handheld jigsaw to cut the corners off the plywood. Using a finishing sander or a block of wood with the sandpaper wrapped around it, use 60 grit sandpaper to smooth the rounded edges of the plywood.
Step 4: Assemble the lazy susan.
I strongly recommend assembling your lazy susan prior to painting or adding a protective finish. That way, you won’t damage the painting/finish through the holes you’re drilling. Also, you avoid the extra time and effort of painting/finishing if you discover issues after assembling! Place the lazy susan turntable on your 2" x 8" x 8" base. Use a measuring tape to center the turntable on the base.Use a pencil to trace the small holes on the bottom square of the turntable.Position the Phillips screwdriver where you intend to drill four holes for the screws. Firmly tap the screwdriver to create an indentation to guide the drill bit.Using a hand drill with a 3/32" drill bit, drill the four holes into the base.Line up the lazy susan turntable over the drilled holes. Using a Phillips screwdriver and four #6 x ½" flat head Phillips wood screws, attach the turntable to the base.With your sheet of plywood bottom side up to expose the lines you previously drew, align the top square of the turntable so that the four larger circles each rest on the lines. (This ensures your turntable is centered on the plywood.) Use a pencil to trace the small holes on the bottom square of the turntable.Position the Phillips screwdriver where you intend to drill four holes for the screws. Firmly tap the screwdriver to create an indentation to guide the drill bit.To avoid drilling your holes too far into the plywood, align the drill bit against the 15/32" side of the plywood. Using duct/masking tape, tape over the portion of the drill bit that should not go into the wood. By doing this, you will know that if you drill beyond the taped portion of the drill bit, you will drill straight through the plywood.Using a hand drill with a 3/32" drill bit, drill the four holes into the plywood.Line up the lazy susan turntable attached to the base over the drilled holes. Using a Phillips screwdriver, four #6 x ½" flat head Phillips wood screws, and four washers (or four wood screws with larger heads as recommended in the disclaimer in step 1), attach the turntable to the plywood.Flip the assemble tabletop lazy susan over and test its functionality. Hopefully all is good, and you’re ready to paint/finish it!
Step 5: Finish the lazy susan.
Adjust these instructions accordingly if you plan to paint your tabletop lazy susan instead. Disassemble your tabletop lazy susan.Use a sheet of 220 grit sandpaper to smooth all of the surfaces you intend to finish. (TIP: To save time, only finish the sides that will be visible. I finished the top and the sides of the plywood.)Brush away the sawdust. Use a tack cloth to wipe away the excess. Place the plywood on the bucket. Using the foam brush, apply a thin layer of clear finish to the top and the sides of the plywood. Let dry for approximately two hours. Rinse your foam brush and let dry.After two hours, use a sheet of 220 grit sandpaper to smooth the finished surfaces.Repeat steps 4-6 until the plywood is finished to your liking.Reassemble the tabletop lazy susan.Use and enjoy!