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Welcome to the most awesome blog on earth, one about real people building real furniture! Come get inspired, learn, and be amazed! Special thanks to our readers who post to our brag blog!

Fire Pit Swings

April 16, 2014 |
posted by Wounded Marine
Additional Photos
Fire Pit Swings
Fire Pit Swings
Fire Pit Swings
Fire Pit Swings
Fire Pit Swings
About This Project

My wife saw something like this on Pinterest and desperately wanted one. The one she saw was hexagonal in shape. We didn't need as many swings so we went with just a plain square shape. We used 6x6s for the legs and posts across the top and used 4x4s for the angled support pieces. We built the swings using the plan from this website. All the materials can be picked up at the blue and orange stores. However when it came to the springs for the swings, the blue store was 1/3 of the price of HD. The legs are 12' long and buried 4' under the ground and cemented in for strength. Luckily I am retired military and was able to rent an auger for 1/2 the price of HD or the blue store. You could do it by hand but it saved us hours and lots of back pain. We found our dimensions for the size we wanted and spray painted dots on the ground where the posts were going to go. We dug the holes and stuffed the 6x6s in them. Using a post level we made sure they were plum. We braced them and added the quickrete and left them to setup over night. The next day we had to make sure all the tops were level with each other. This is where having some knowledge of physics paid off. I took clear tubing and screwed it above the height that I wanted on one post and then screwed the other end to another post. Fill it with water until the water level on the first post is where I wanted it (8 feet high) and it will automatically fill it level on the other end. There is a picture of this above. Water will always level itself out. I had to do this because my yard is at a slight down hill grade. We marked it and cut the tops off to make it level. After attaching the 6x6s on the top with 8" lag bolts it was time to paint. After painting was done we built 3 swings from Ana's plans. We shortened them by 6" to give room to walk between the legs and the swings. All in all it was a great project that only took two dedicated weekends. My wife still has to paint the swings though.

Estimated Cost: 
$600ish
Estimated Time Investment: 
Week Long Project (20 Hours or More)
Required Skill Level: 
Intermediate
Type of Wood: 
(8) 6x6 @ 12' long treated pine, (3) 4x4 @8' long
Finish Used: 
We used an oil base Black Barn Paint from the blue store.
posted by kkllgg
About This Project

This was one of my first woodworking projects I completed with limited help from my handy husband. And the first time I used a jigsaw (to cut out the handles). I used mostly scrap MDF we had leftover from other projects - only purchasing one additional sheet of MDF for around $12. The MDF worked ok, but I did have some trouble with splitting when screwing it all together and screwing the castors on. Used our Kreg Jig where it made sense.

As a beginner, this project took me somewhere in the neighborhood of 16 hours over the span of a couple weeks. Cost was approximately $50 - including the MDF (but I used mostly scrap we had on hand), spray primer and paint, castors, and "Library" decal.

From Plan (new): 
Estimated Cost: 
$50
Estimated Time Investment: 
Weekend Project (10-20 Hours)
Required Skill Level: 
Beginner
Type of Wood: 
MDF
Finish Used: 
To finish, I primed with Rustoleum spray primer and sprayed several coats (two cans) of Rustoleum spray paint in their bright yellow. (Note that if using MDF, the spray paint did not cover the edges well. I read a tip online that suggested spreading a thin layer of drywall spackle over the edges and that worked for me.) I had someone on Etsy make the chevron "Library" decal for me for about $5.
posted by Jorlik
Additional Photos
Apothecary Console
About This Project

Built straight off the plans except I added drawer slides.

From Plan (new): 
Estimated Cost: 
250
Estimated Time Investment: 
Week Long Project (20 Hours or More)
Required Skill Level: 
Intermediate
Type of Wood: 
Plywood and pine.
Additional Photos
Cottage loft with a bunk-boost
Cottage loft with a bunk-boost
About This Project

This was Ana's cottage loft. I was asked to make it into a bunk bed. So I changed the backside to include two sets of five 1x6s, and added a 'second floor' so the top bunk child would feel like she was in the house as well. I also added the flower boxes and made the rails 19" high on the top bunk. Next time, I would add a ladder to both sides for easier access to making the bed. The customer painted the bed.

From Plan (new): 
Estimated Time Investment: 
Week Long Project (20 Hours or More)
Required Skill Level: 
Intermediate
Type of Wood: 
Pine
Finish Used: 
To deliver this bed, I had the back panels as separate pieces, the roof/window as a separate piece and then the bottom part of front and the sides. The total weight of the bed was about 280 lbs.
posted by Markymark84
Additional Photos
Farmhouse Dining Table
Farmhouse Dining Table
Farmhouse Dining Table
About This Project

I started to make these tables and post them on my local classified ad. In the past few months i have made half a dozen tables. They seem to be pretty popular. The great plans on this site have helped me make a bit of extra income to support my tool addiction.

The tables are made from framing grade lumber from blue box store. I take each piece and cut it to rough length and run it through a joiner and planner to get it nice and square and smooth to start with. I cut everything to final dimension and start the glue up.

I wanted a nice flat and clean top for these tables so having straight and square lumber helps. To make the top I edge glue the boards together and clamp. No screws or anything else required. The breadboard ends are attached with a few pocket screws.

The table joints are are done using pocket hole screws and glue. I have trouble finding 4x4 in my area so I make the legs using two 2x4's glued together. I use 3 pocket screws per joint (skirt attaches to the legs). For the cross beams, i use a dado blade to notch out the legs and cross stretchers. I find this is the most accurate and quick way to go. The cross stretchers are attached with glue and screws, and the screw holes are filled with 3/8 pine dowels and cut flush.

Once the table is all assembled, I run it through a course of sanding from 80 grit up to 220 grit with an orbital sander. Then its time to start the finishing. I use minwax pre-stain conditioner to help it absorb evenly, then 2-3 coats of minwax stain of choice. I then use 3-5 coats of minwax wipe on poly. I find this stuff to be great. It goes on with a rag, no drip marks and provides a very smooth finish.

Each table takes about 25 hours to complete.

Estimated Cost: 
$200.00
Estimated Time Investment: 
Week Long Project (20 Hours or More)
Required Skill Level: 
Intermediate
Type of Wood: 
Pine
Finish Used: 
Minwax stains with wipe on high gloss poly
posted by silvestros
Additional Photos
little crib with side windows
About This Project

cozy crib for the time is born to the time starts seating
side acrylic windows so you can see it from every wear like your bed
then it can be use as a desk or table

Estimated Time Investment: 
Weekend Project (10-20 Hours)
Required Skill Level: 
Intermediate
Type of Wood: 
plywood
Finish Used: 
varnish

Kid's Playhouse

April 15, 2014 |
posted by jcmcclure77
Additional Photos
Kid's Playhouse
Kid's Playhouse
Kid's Playhouse
Kid's Playhouse
Kid's Playhouse
About This Project

My son's school asked me to build a playhouse for their annual auction and after looking around online for a few days finally found a plan I liked. I modified it a little and did not do the cedar so we could paint it. Turned out great and more pictures on the blog, www.atouchofarkansas.com

Estimated Cost: 
$800
Estimated Time Investment: 
Week Long Project (20 Hours or More)
Required Skill Level: 
Intermediate
Type of Wood: 
Pine, plywood
Finish Used: 
Paint

Bench

April 15, 2014 |
posted by MandaA
Additional Photos
Bench
About This Project

My first project, not directly from Ana White but combination of Ana White and benches I've seen on other sites.

Estimated Cost: 
$17
Estimated Time Investment: 
Weekend Project (10-20 Hours)
Required Skill Level: 
Starter Project
Type of Wood: 
Pine 2x4's and 1x12
Finish Used: 
MinWax Gel Stain Dark Walnut over early American. Top coat is polyacryclic
posted by amandasmith000
About This Project

This is the fourth time I have made these to give as gifts. They are just so cute, easy, inexpensive, and versatile. Now that the growing season is among us, Im sure Ill be making even more.

From Plan (new): 
Estimated Time Investment: 
An Hour or Two (0-2 Hours)
Required Skill Level: 
Starter Project
Type of Wood: 
cedar
Finish Used: 
sanded, white latex paint, then applied minwax polycrilic
posted by Smokeydog
Additional Photos
Farmhouse Table for Military Family
Farmhouse Table for Military Family
Farmhouse Table for Military Family
Farmhouse Table for Military Family
Farmhouse Table for Military Family
About This Project

My niece's husband is career military and they move a lot. She saw the farmhouse table on Ana's site and asked if I would build her one that could be dis-assembled for moving and have extensions for large group gatherings. Challenge accepted!

In order to take the table apart, I used 2 - 6 inch long lag screws at the top of each leg that screwed into the 2x4 supports for the table top. Due to the weight of the table, it is advised to turn the table upside-down when removing the screws or assembling the table. Next, I used 3 inch lag screws to secure the beam under the table. Again, the lag screws are easily removed for moving.

For the leaf inserts, I utilized a dowel jig so the leaf extensions could be easily inserted and removed on the sliders that support the breadboard end. (It is necessary to drill the holes out a little larger that accept the dowels.) This was advantageous for two reasons ... (1.) The leafs are easily installed and removed; and (2.) No need for leaf extensions that have their own 2 x 4 sliders. This reduces storage space for the extensions and eliminates the slider insert hole cutouts on each end of the table because the slider is never removed.

The table, when disassembled, is in (6) sections:

(2) table leg sections
(1) table top
(1) Main beam from under the table
(2) Leaf extensions

My niece is simply thrilled with the table.

From Plan (new): 
Estimated Cost: 
$295.50
Estimated Time Investment: 
Week Long Project (20 Hours or More)
Required Skill Level: 
Intermediate
Type of Wood: 
Fir and Pine for Table Top
Finish Used: 
Min-Wax Dark Walnut Stain and Satin Finish

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