Unless you plan on eating every meal outside, you need a good space to eat inside your camper. And the space might need to double as a school table in the morning and an office at night. So you need something big enough to seat everyone in your family, but you also want it to look good since it will be one of the primary focal points in your trailer.
You might want to drag in your grandma’s antique kitchen table to add to your farmhouse style design, but you likely don’t have sufficient space and you have to be concerned about adding too much additional weight.
RV chassis are rated to a maximum capacity and your tow vehicle (likely a pickup truck) can only tow so much. So you can’t bring along your traditional furniture and the kitchen sink in your RV remodel.
Most RVs come with some sort of dining table, whether it’s a free-standing table, a U-shaped dinette or a table you have to attach to the floor. But many table options don’t quite fit the needs of a small family.
Dinettes are often really tight and uncomfortable for adults and it can be a challenge to get everyone in and out as they slide around the bench to their spot at the table.
And tables you have to setup and take down every time can be a hassle.
So it’s no surprise that we’re seeing more RV renovators build their own table options in their RV to meet their needs. It allows the freedom to build extra storage if needed and they look a lot better than many of the options that come from the dealer.
Free Standing Tables
It’s not uncommon to see RV renovators remove couches or small, uncomfortable dinette booths from a slide-out to add a dining table. One advantage of building your own dinette is that you can often create a storage bench along the wall, and extra storage in an RV is always a good thing!
But while it’s nice to add a bench seat with storage, that likely means you can’t have a full-size dining table or it would push out too far into the main RV space. So that’s why most renovators opt for a skinny, longer table. You can add chairs on the other side to create more seating and the bench can usually seat a few adults comfortably.
It’s often a good idea to use a free-standing table in combination with a storage bench so you can adjust the seat size (adults require a little more space than kids!) and it’s nice to be able to slide the table in when not in use to create a little more open floor space for walking or a playspace for the kids.
And if you build or use a sturdy table, it’s nice to have the option to take that table outside if your camp site doesn’t already have a table outside.
Fixed Leg Tables
The biggest disadvantage to building a storage bench for your dining table is that it pushes the table out into the main walking space. Perhaps you don’t need that much seating or perhaps you just have a smaller space that won’t allow that bench seating, but you could opt for a smaller table connected to the wall.
We often see fixed tables built into the corner of a slide-out, but we’ve also seen some clever renovators turn the back of their trailer or 5th wheel into a longer dining table with a view. Check out some of these examples below.
Have you seen examples of skinny dining tables that we missed? Let us know in the comments so we can add them to our list!