Heavy Table Tops: Choosing the Best Base for Marble or Granite

Stone table tops give you more functional working kitchen space, tie in a total decor and add a touch of luxury and elegance to your dining room. They are also very heavy. A stunning, one-of-a-kind piece of granite for your tabletop could weigh several hundred pounds. This makes choosing the right base to support that slab a challenge. You need something that will stand up to the weight and provide a stable support system. Here are some of the basic questions you will need to ask when shopping for a table base.

Heavy Table Tops: Choosing the Best Base for Marble or Granite

What Dimensions will the Base Support?

The size and thickness of the stone slab limit your base options. Most table legs for stone table tops are constructed using cast iron and steel tubing, but stability is a major concern. Sure, these materials can stand up to the weight, but a heavy table that tips easily is just as much of a concern. Granite and marble slabs typically weigh around 13 lbs per square foot, for the thinner versions.

Thicker tops can weigh in at 20 lbs. or more per square foot. That means a 4 x 4 table top may weigh more than 300 lbs. A thinner sheet would top out around 200 lbs, which is a lot easier to balance. Consider going with a thinner option. It will look just as lovely, but will give you a lot more in the way of options when looking at table legs.

How Tall will the Table Be?

Height determines where the center of gravity is for your table. The taller it is, the more stability it requires to avoid tipping over. Larger tables often do better at standard dining heights, while smaller table tops can work well at bar height. If you want a larger, taller table, keep in mind that you will need a much more sturdy base to stabilize the weight.

What Styles are Available?

Cast iron is the material of choice for holding up a large, stone tabletop. Cast iron is heavier than contemporary steel columns and can withstand a lot more weight. When you go with a contemporary steel column, you might have some flexing where the tabletop bolts to the column.

This can cause the edge of the table to move with use. Most cast iron columns are vintage designs, so you may want to look at alternative support styles if you want a contemporary look.

What about Adding Columns, Not Cast Iron?

By adding additional supports, you can move away from cast iron, entirely. Multiple bases spread the weight more evenly. Instead of using one large cast iron base, you could use three small steel bases to hold the same tabletop. This opens up the style choices and lets you create a more customized look.

What is the Ordering Process?

When custom ordering the base and tabletop for your dining room table, you need to know the entire process. The last thing you want is a tabletop cluttering up your space as you wait several weeks for the base to arrive. Check on expected delivery dates before placing your order, so when the pieces are delivered, you can set it up and start serving dinner on your new table, immediately.

Tawanna Madden works as an interior designer. She loves to share her decorating insights online. You can find her posts mainly on interior design blog sites.

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5 Comments

  1. This table is so beautiful, I had a granite table once, but the legs couldn't hold it and I didn't want to take the chance of anything
    happening to my grandchildren so I sold it.., but she was beautiful!
    @tisonlyme143

    • I have a beautiful set of marble tables in my living room – a coffee table and two end tables. They are gorgeous and so easy to care for, really add some pizzazz to the décor!

  2. Love granite and marble!! What a beautiful and classy way to accent your kitchen or dining room!! Thanks for the awesome pointers!

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