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Lower shelf sagging (cupping)

As you can see from a previous post, I'm giving my BGE table a makeover.   One issue I've had since I bought the table was sagging (cupping) of the lower shelf due to the weight of the BGE (large) on it.

Last night I removed the outer porition that had sagged and I'm now looking to cut new wood to replace it. (1 x 3's that have been doubled in thickness, essetially creating a 2x3)  This time, I plan on supporting the weight of the egg on the lower shelf with 2x4 cross beams underneath the shelf running the entire distance.

My question is, can anyone recommend a harder wood to construct the exterior of the bottom shelf so it will not be prone to sagging (cupping)?

sagging.jpg 84.8K


  • You could fasten a 2x4 to the inside of the legs or build an "X" frame from corner to corner and attach it to the legs.
  • Rick1Rick1 Posts: 77
    Cedar is a strong wood.
  • CGW1CGW1 Posts: 332
    Ash is another good wood to consider.
    Franco Ceramic Grillworks
  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 7,215
    edited December 2012
    Not sure I understand the issue, but "my" (actually neighbors KJ) old table had 4 structural grade 2"X4" beams running the length of the table. The outside two were attached to the posts, just like yours, the inside two between the 2"X4" girts mounted between the posts. These inside 2"X4" beams actually carry most of the egg load considering the egg sat on a 16"X16" paver. 
    I'd use spruce, hemlock, pine standard framing material. It is cheap, stronger than cedar and because it is covered and not visible, no reason to use an exotic. 
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
  • 1x cedar is strong enough as long as the span is correct, I would put joists 16" on center perpendicular to 1x cladding you are going to put on your self  
    Barbecue may not be what brings world peace, but it has to be a good place to start -Anthony Bourdain 
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 16,074
    edited December 2012
    I agree - the joists will be the easiest way to make that bottom shelf span not sag. 
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, Kamado Joe Jr., smoker with a 5k btu AC, gas grill, fire pit, pack of angry cats, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • I used cedar 2 x 6s (3) for the base of my XL.

  • @NautiRouge 2"X6" works well as planking, because the span is relatively small good solution. If the span was twice as long, like many folk's long tables, there might be a sag issue. 
    Personally, I like the look of 5/4 cedar decking on 2"X4" beams hooked into 2"X4" girts all tied to 4"X4" posts, strong like bull and cheap like borscht. (Crown the beams)
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
  • I used 2 x 6's and never looked back.

    Simple ingredients, amazing results!
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