When we started our own van build, and were designing the layout, we spent a long time devising the best layout options for the space. In doing this planning, we naturally researched the best tables for van conversions, before eventually settling on the Lagun Table mount.
We had read good things about the Lagun Table in various van life, RV and marine forums. The Lagun table mount is commonly employed in vehicles where space is at a premium, such as on boats, in caravans, RVs and tow caravans.
It was a costly purchase, at least we thought so. But, did it live up to its hype? Was the Lagun Table worth the cost?
Short answer… yes. We were overall very happy with the Lagun table. The installation was simple enough. The swivel function was absolutely genius and totally transformed our ability to function in the small living quarters of our Ford Transit van. We ate most meals on it, we played on it with our son and used it for when we did the occasional bit of remote work on our laptops.
There were some negatives though. But, I’ll get to them in a sec. First, let’s dive into the Lagun Table and why it seemed like such an attractive purchase for us.
The swivel function was absolutely genius and totally transformed our ability to function in the small living quarters of our Ford Transit van.
What is a Lagun Swivel Table Mount?
The Lagun table mount is commonly employed in vehicles where space is at a premium, such as on boats, in caravans, RVs and tow caravans. It is a swivelling table that, when installed, allows the operator to have it set up in a variety of different ways. The Lagun Table Mount turns, spins and folds on 3 different axes. This enables it to quickly be moved out of your way when not in use.
The table can also be height adjusted in 2 different ways.
The Lagun Table does not have legs of its own, instead, it only has a single swivelling arm. This means there is plenty of room for multiple people’s legs below the table.
The Lagun Table mount has multiple easy-to-operate hand locks, that lock the table exactly where you want it making it rock solid.
How Does The Lagun Table Mount Work?
The Lagun Table System is a series of arms that work together to allow the tabletop to be swivelled into, and out of position. Once in position, it can be locked in place securely.
You simply attach the mounting plate to a solid wall in your van or RV, and then simply slide the other arms into place.
This ability to swivel and lock in position is a brilliant feature to have in small spaces. In our case, it allowed us to be able to access our L-sit lounge for meals and playtime.
How Long Does It Take To Setup A Lagun Table?
The Lagun Table takes about 15 -30 seconds to set up. We would store the Lagun Table arm underneath the seat of our L-sit lounge, and the Tabletop would reside on our fixed bed when not in use. When we wanted to use the table, it only took us a moment to pop the arm into the bottom mount (this was attached to a vertical wall of our L-sit lounge). Then we would simply put the tabletop on and it was done. 30 seconds tops!
The Lagun Table takes about 15 -30 seconds to set up.
Most of the time we simply left it up, however. This is was because was immensely adjustable and therefore we could move the table out of our way easily, without having to pack the whole Lagun table away.
How Big is a Lagun Table?
30″ x 40″ / 76cm x 101cm
The Lagun Table Mount System does NOT come with its own tabletop.
So, really, it can be whatever size you want – up to a point. The Lagun website suggests this upper limit is 30″X 40″.
I personally think it is a good idea to keep the dimensions below that. The bigger you go, the more stress you will be putting on the single-arm that supports the tabletop (and everything on it – such as your freshly cooked dinner!). Any pressure you apply to the edges of the tabletop will put a lot of stress through the arm.
How much weight can a Lagun Table Take?
50 lbs / 22.6 kg
According to the Lagun website, the maximum weight for the Lagun Table arm is 50 lbs / 22.6 kg.
This amount includes the tabletop and also everything that is put on top of it. They also state that and sort of leaning or excessive pushing down upon the table can damage parts of the table arm, which makes sense. A single-arm supports the tabletop, and it wouldn’t take a lot to warp that arm substantially.
Does a Lagun Table come with a Tabletop?
No, the Lagun Table Mount does NOT come with its own tabletop. You have to provide or make your own.
This is exactly what we did in our van. We designed and built our own tabletop. This allowed us to build it to the exact dimensions we thought best for the space.
How We Built Our Own Lagun Tabletop.
First, we had to determine how big the table top needed to be. We spent time thinking about exactly what we would be using the table for (2 adults and a toddler eating meals, playing and using laptops) and then figured out how much space we would need to facilitate our actions at the table.
Build a dummy tabletop.
A great tip is to cut a dummy table to size using cardboard or something else rigid. We used some spare rigid foam insulation board. Then take that cutout of your dummy tabletop and sit with it in position. Imagine using it to eat at and work on. This way you will get a much better sense of whether it is big enough to suit your needs.
Cut wood of choice to size.
We bought a Finger Jointed Beech Panel from the local hardware store (Bunnings). It measured 1200 x 600 x 18.
I then cut it down to size. I simply copied the dimensions of the “dummy” tabletop we made out of rigid foam board.
I used a jigsaw to cut rounded edges into the table. I rounded the edges for a couple of reasons.
Rounded corners are safer for our young boy, who would walk around at about head height to the table.
Rounded corners also help to stop our clothes getting caught up on the table corners as we move past, and in and out of our L-sit lounge.
And, from an aesthetic sense, sharp corners throw your eyes off the line of the table edge, but with corners that are rounded, the line leads your eyes around each table corner to continue along the path naturally.
This is a long winded way of saying that rounded corners just look better!
Rounded corners just look better!
Sand the table top.
After cutting the tabletop to size, I then used an electric sander to smooth the surface.
I also used the electric sander to also round the top edge of the table.
I just like the way this feels when you rub your hand over it. It’s one of those little touches that aren’t necessary, but make all the difference, especially with something that you are going to use everyday like a tabletop.
Add protective coating to the table.
Once sanded, it was time to varnish the table. I used an Oil Based Cabothane Clear Polyurethane Timber Varnish for the following reasons –
- This varnish is a highly durable, hard wearing varnish.
- Upon applying, it actually enhances timber grain look.
- It is quite resistant to stains and scratches.
I applied quite a few coats of this varnish as I wanted to make sure it would withstand the day to day use of being our primary table/bench surface in our van.
Between each coat, I hand sanded the tabletop with fine grain sandpaper. This kept the table feeling smooth and looking polished.
Attach the Lagun Table Mount to the Tabletop.
The next step was to attach our newly varnished tabletop to the Lagun Table mount.
It is just a matter of making sure you have the attachment mounted precisely in the centre of your new tabletop, otherwise undue stresses will be put on the Lagun Table arm once the tabletop is in place.
Install tabletop into the van.
As you can see in the picture below, we mounted the Lagun Table’s bottom bracket to the wall of our L-sit lounge. the wall of the lounge was clad with 9mm plywood. This would not provide enough structural integrity to the Lagun Table arm, as 9mm plywood can be easily warped and bent.
So, to rectify this, I attached the base to the 15mm plyboard which was positioned underneath the seats, on the other side of the 9mm plywood wall.
Best Lagun Tabletop Ideas.
The Lagun Table System does NOT come with a tabletop supplied. Instead, it’s BYOT (Bring Your Own Tabletop!).
This means that as long as you conform to the recommended size and weight (30x50in and 50lbs) then you can really do any kind of tabletop you can imagine.
Panel from a hardware store.
As I said above, we simply bought a wooden Finger Jointed Beech Panel from our local big-box hardware store and then cut and shaped it to the exact size we wanted. There were plenty of different panels to choose from, with different types of wood. This is a good option if you want a halfway completed piece of wood to work from.
Fence pailing table.
I’ve always wanted to do this. Make a table out of fence pailings. My one main concern with this is that I wouldn’t be able to get the necessary solid structural integrity to withstand daily use without strengthening and in doing so, adding too much weight.
Another idea that is similar to the fence pailing idea, worth researching at least, is a table made out of recycled palettes.
Ikea Tabletops (or any other big box store).
Another way to go would be to purchase an already created table that is already the correct size and weight. Then you simply have to retrofit it to the Lagun Table System.
2nd Hand Furniture at Charity Donation Stores
At Charity stores like Salvos (if in Australia) you can find very cheap second-hand furniture. It would, with a little bit of rummaging, be easy enough to find a coffee table or small table that could be retrofit to the Lagun Table. The benefit of this would be that the top of the table would already have been treated for consistent use. Also, you might find some really funky designs that won’t be available to you in a store like IKEA. Just make sure to keep the tabletop’s weight in focus, as there is a limit of 50lbs / 22.6kg to keep under – and this weight includes whatever else is actually going ON the table!
Another alternative is to buy a marine tabletop. They will be light in weight, cut to a usable shape, have a protective top surface, and many of them will have a lip that runs around the table to stop things sliding off (as these tables are used at sea). This table lip can also be handy in a van.
Large Cutting Board
You might already have the perfect tabletop in your home at the moment. If you have a large cutting board, that could be the perfect table, just waiting to be installed. These would be best for solo or travelling pairs as you really don’t need that much space.
I would recommend sanding and varnishing the cutting board though. This will give it a smooth, protected surface that will withstand typical day to day use.
Pros and Cons of the Lagun Table
We loved our Lagun Table. It made our space living super functional and allowed us plenty of good times around it. The Lagun Table System is not without its faults though.
PROS of Lagun Table.
The swivel system is genius.
It means the Lagun Table can spin and swivel into multiple different positions. This allows much more efficient use of space. For instance, the table can be moved aside, allowing a person to access a chair, and then slid back into position. With a solid locked table, this would not be possible.
One leg instead of Four.
The Lagun Table has one leg, or arm, instead of 4. This means more legroom under the table. Again, this helps capitalise on space.
You can use whatever tabletop you want – within reason.
The Lagun Table Mount does not come with a tabletop. Instead, you have to bring your own. And, as everyone’s space inside their van or RV is different, this gives you the opportunity to make a table that best suits your needs.
CONS of Lagun Table.
The Lagun Table System is Expensive.
With a price tag of $169 USD, the table is bloody expensive if you ask me. Is it worth the cost? In most cases, probably yes. Though you may be able to have just as much success with a different option (see alternatives below).
The Lagun Table Started To Lean.
We had a problem where after 3 months of daily use, the Lagun System was definitely starting to lean prominently to one side. The table system comes with thin wedges that can be applied under the mount bracket that attaches to your wall. These will help rectify this lean.
Best Lagun Table Alternatives
DIY Lagun Table
There are a few really good DIY Lagun Table Alternatives that I had bookmarked during our initial research into the table. We ended up going with the Lagun Table option anyway, as we wanted the ability to change the height of the table. I never found a DIY solution that managed this problem well.
Here is a really simple DIY solution we liked.
Folding Van Table
Folding van tables are a great solution for vans and RVs. We loved them and planned on one for a little while, but found the Lagun to be better in the space that we had.
One of the simplest builds we have come across is from we-who-roam.com. Their solution was a simple, cheap, and really efficient use of space.
Table using TV Mount Swivel Bracket
This was one of the more creative solutions we saw. On this RV forum, I came across a really cool solution utilising a TV mounting bracket! The table swivels AND stores away vertically. So good!
Our Honest Opinion Of The Lagun Table
I’ll cut to the point. We loved our Lagun Table.
It made our van living space so much more efficient and convenient. If we were to start the build again tomorrow, I would likely go down the same route and choose the Lagun Table again (though re-reading some of the DIY alternatives has me thinking haha!). It just works.
I really hope you have enjoyed this article and have learnt something from our adventures with the Lagun Table.
Best of luck with your van build!