I have added a few of my barrels in this tutorial for the purpose of showing you issues and solutions I came across along the way and how I resolved them. I filled my barrel with water and bleach and let it soak for a few days. I emptied the barrel and let the barrel dry out in the sun before I started. I added screws to the top and bottom bands to keep them in place and removed all the other bands to make it easier to sand. It is a good idea to number them so you know where they go. I sanded the barrel starting with 120grit to remove all the rough surface and the wine stains. And gave a final sand using 240grit. I stained the barrel and added 2 coats of satin varnish. I replaced all the bands and added screws in all the stave’s to keep them in place and to give it a decorative look.
I bought a 25l bucket (which must have a lip to prevent it from falling through the hole). I removed the handle. I found the centre of my wine barrel and cut a circle the size of the top wine bucket under the lip. I drilled a pilot hole and used a jigsaw to cut the centre out.
The top of my wine barrels tables is usually made from old table tops which I recycle and reinforce using Plywood underneath to add some strength to the top. My average table top is 1.2m, and I try to build them with a thickness of 60mm. The top I have shown above in this post was cut using a jigsaw, but for some reason, I ended up with an edge that was sloped, so it was unsuitable for my project. I don’t know why this happened and would love any feedback. I have since found that this is a blessing as long as you have your tabletop the right side up. It will save lots of time grinding later.
So I came up with another plan and used my router attached to a piece of plywood. I found the centre point of my piece of wood and screwed my plywood into the centre of my wood and routered the circle out. This does take some time but I have found this is the best way to end up with a good clean circle. The inside circle proved more difficult because the top of the barrel was not a perfect circle and slopes so I used a grinder with a sanding disc to keep remove the excess until the top fit snug.
To secure the top to the barrel, I could not work out how others had done theirs so I came up with my own idea. I lined up the table top up with the barrel and drilled a hole through the barrel and into the middle of the inner circle of the table top and inserted large bolts to prevent the top from moving. I have countersunk the bolt heads so they did not obstruct the lid.
I used the router to remove part of the underneath surface so that the lid balanced on the rim of the barrel and not on the surface of the inside which was not level on any of my barrels. I have made a few of these tables and found this to be the best way. The picture below was one that I had the lid resting inside the lip. But this one had a slight wobble.
The wine barrel lid on this one had had a slight wobbly because the inside of the barrel was warped. I chiselled out the centre of the lid so that I could add a pull latch to make it easier to lift off. I sanded the surface ending with 320grit, stained it with cedar stain and added 3 coats of satin varnish. And to finish off I added I strip of aluminium cut to size to finish off the edge.
On the table above I used a veneer instead of solid wood because the pattern on the wood was nicer but I found the surface was not very durable. So I decided to try coating the top with Norton Liquid glass which gave a stunning effect.
This is another wine barrel table that I made.
If you want a more detailed step by step tutorials http://uniquecreationsbyanita.com/how-to-make-a-wine-barrel-table-with-built-in-wine-bucket/
I have also made some wine barrel coffee table if you want to check them out. http://uniquecreationsbyanita.com/wine-barrel-table-greek-key-design/
I hoped you enjoyed my project.
Thanks for sharing @AnitaH25.
You might be interested in this previous discussion about wine barrels as there were some great ideas - https://www.workshop.com.au/t5/Outdoor/Wine-Barrels/m-p/11656