Friday, May 11, 2012

My New Potting Bench


 The weather is nice and you can not make me go inside!! No, You can't!! I wanna play outside!

I've been working on building a deck out of my pallets and after getting it done (not ready for display yet) I found I had a lot of left over pallet boards.  So I sat and starred at them....


And starred for a bit at the other pile...


Then looked down at the deck area and after having broke the water main to the house by just merely turning off the garden spigot, I thought... Hey!  I can build a garden hose holder!!!

Thinking it would be a great idea.  Build a heavy box and put the hose inside it and when I go to pull the hose it won't pull at the spigot.

So I starred at the pile a little bit more.

Then, started to line up all the boards.  trying to get a feel for the size and how to lay it out to get the best use of the size boards I've got.

I went down and grabbed a book about building simple garden structures...thinking I saw the box I wanted to build in there.. and ran into a picture of something else.  Measured out some boards and 3 hours later had myself a beautiful potting bench built and in place and for free!!

I added up the pallets that I used, turned out to be about 3... But since I had already taken them apart and they can split and break on you while you take them apart (you should see the pallet grave yard around the corner) I would call it safe and find 4.

All you really need to do the project is a miter saw, (circular would work but I really prefer the miter when I can use it!), A drill (preferably not pink!), some 2 1/2 inch deck screws and some 1 5/8 inch deck screws, a tape measure and well, that's it!!

Do yourself a favor and when you purchase screws, buy ones for the weather in your area AND don't get cheap ones!  They are frustrating as all get out when your struggling with a screw that isn't coated, it won't go in, and it snaps or bends on you!   I have an inventory of sizes and types that I keep on hand.  It's like having flour and sugar stocked in your kitchen.  I just keep a box of each in the shop and replenish when and if I need to.  So I don't add them to the cost of anything I build.

I mean, a box it 8.00 which had 50-200 screws... I used 96 of various sizes on this bench... so, about 4.00 worth.  But, I keep them on hand because I use them all the time and counting and adding them each time... forget it.  I keep them stocked.. Just like you keep toilet paper stocked in the bathroom.

Sometimes you find stamped imprints on one of the pallet's... When I do, I put them aside for projects like this one.  I love the writing on the front of this bench.

So, How did I do it?

Easy.

I built a square first, taken 3 of the 2x4's that were the same length.  Cut one of them in half and then laid them out and built a square.  You can see the square standing up in this photo.

I then took 4 more 2x4s and cut them to 30.5 inches, screwing them to the inside of the square, as legs.  You can see that also in this picture.

Then I took 2 more 2x4s cut them ends off a smidge to fit across the 'legs' I just installed and screwed them in place 10 inches up from the bottom of the legs... You can see one of them in the photo also.

Then I flipped the whole piece over and attached the other legs to the other side. 


From there, that was really it!  The next thing I did was find pallets that all matched and laid them out across the top and the bottom shelf.  I marked them with a pencil and then cut the end of each one.  Laying them out again to get the right spacing, I screwed them into place making sure to put the pretty end on the front facing side.

I need to add, that pallet wood is very very dry and splits very very easily.  So for the bench, I pilot drilled each hole!  Take time to do this!!!

I also moved it into place BEFORE I screwed on the top of the bench.  The puppy was getting heavy and hubby was at work!  Since I was working on it in his parking space, I needed to get it moved before he came home and accidentally parked on it! 



I love it!! And have plans to build several more for other areas of the land.  And the pallet pot that is sitting on top, is just 3 long pallets and 2 little cut end caps all nailed together!  Easy as pie!!!

So the bottom line.... It was free.. I used wood from the pallets I took apart and screws that I keep on hand, with tools that I already own.  But for you, it may be more if you need to purchase any of those things.  Either way, it well worth it!!!

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