Jeff and I started saving for this project in 2013 when we both started getting into craft beers. We had seen bottle cap tables before and wanted to create our own with as many unique caps as possible. We saved up for a solid 3 years while living in Vegas which gave us the opportunity to get a lot of west coast beers. Of course, being from Iowa, we have plenty of Midwest beers to show off. We also have some European caps, specifically Czech pilsners on the table, as well. Overall, after 3 years of saving, we decided we had a diverse collection and knew it was time to make the table! Altogether, not including the cost of any of the beer consumed, we spent around $200.
- Beer Caps (We made sure to be careful every time we opened up a cap so they didn’t get too bent)
- A Table
- Wood Glue
- Blow Torch (optional, but we highly recommend)
- Super Glue
- A Cat (Optional)
We got lucky and found this coffee table next to a dumpster, just needs to be sanded and stained.
Sanding and Staining
This was probably the most grueling part of the project. Neither of us had done it before and we underestimated out messy and time consuming sanding a table would be.
We took off the side edges of the table because we wanted to create a border around the caps that was going to be level with the height of the caps. We found some nice molding at home depot, cut it to size and attached it with some nails and wood glue.
Now that we had the table all sanded down and the molding added, it was time to stain! We chose a dark lacquer, for two reasons. 1. It was our first time staining so if we messed up, it wouldn’t show too bad. 2. It matched our living room furniture.
Sanding and staining the table took us a whole weekend to complete.
Laying out the Beer Caps
We’ve had some people ask us why we didn’t lay it out in a pattern or color coordinate the caps, and that’s because our purpose was to have as many unique caps as possible. Because of that, we just wanted it to be randomly laid out. We tried to make sure no similar caps were next to each other.
Super Gluing the Caps to the Table
Before laying down the epoxy, you need to make sure the caps are attached to the table. If you skip this step, then the caps will float up to the top when you pour the epoxy and that’s definitely not what you want when you’re trying to seal the caps into the epoxy.
I forgot to take any pictures, but we used just regular super glue, probably around 8 bottles. We took a drop of super glue and put it between each cap and it seeped down to the table, rather than picking each cap up individually and then laying it back down again…. ain’t nobody got time for that!
Laying Down the Epoxy
Once all of the caps were attached to the table it was time to lay down the epoxy! We bought 2 boxes from Home Depot for $50 and we thought that would be more than enough. Yeah, we were wrong.
We laid down both boxes and it only covered a thin layer above the caps.
We let that first layer dry for a few days and in the meantime I looked online for some cheaper epoxy and I found this stuff on Amazon for a fraction of the price. 128 ounces for $63 compared to 32 ounces for $25 at Home Depot. We didn’t notice any difference in mixing or laying it out between the two either.
Mixing the epoxy is fairly easy, just follow the directions on the container. If you are really worried about getting air bubbles in your finished product, then I highly recommend getting a small blow torch to pop them when laying the epoxy down.
Overall, laying down the epoxy took about 2 weeks because we wanted to make sure it was completely dry before adding a new layer. We got some epoxy on the edges a bit so I sanded it down and stained it to give it a nice clean finish.
That’s it! We are so happy with the end result. With the layers of epoxy it weighs quite a bit, but it is REALLY sturdy. This table will be with us for a long time.