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Building a Bench for your garden

Bench Plans

our bench

We built this bench for along side a trail. Painted or stained or just allowed to weather, it would look fine in many settings or at the edge of your garden, lake or where ever.

Materials Wood:

  • 2 8 foot 4x4s
  • 4 8 foot 2x8s
  • 1 8 foot 2x4
  • 24 3/8"x5 1/2" galvanized carriage bolts (washers and nuts)
  • 2 3/8"x4" galvanized carriage bolts (washers and nuts

  • Below are the cutting dimensions:

    material list

    material list

    Cut the three (3) leg frame parts for each side out of the 4x4s. Each 4x4 will yeild one leg frame. See the diagrams and pictures below. The angles are 15 degrees (or 75 depending on your point of reference) and 30 degrees.

    I like to use a square for these, in that case, 4" on one side of the square and 15" on the other side will get you a 15 degree angle. And, 4 5/8" and 8" will get you the 30 degree angle. (see the diagrams)
    material list

    The leg frame parts are notched to fit with each other. With the front and back legs resting against a straight edge, measure 11 inches between them. Lay the cross piece over them so that the top end meets the top of the front leg, and the bottom rests against the straight edge. Mark the three boards where their notches will be.

    material list

    Cut the notches out by setting your saw's blade at 1/2 the width of the 4x4 and making numerous cuts in the notch and knocking out the waste.

    material list

    Tap the parts together. Stand them up

    material list

    Ok, cut two (2) sections 19 3/4" long from the 2x4. Lay each against the leg frame. With the back of the board even with the back leg and the front edge even with the top of the front leg, use a level to find where the board should cross the back of the frame. Mark it with a line where it crosses the front and back parts of the leg frame.

    Also mark the back of the 2x4 where it extends past the legs.

    Cut the waste from the 2x4.

    Now, for drilling holes.. Marked them on the leg frame and drilled them through from the side where the 2x4 will mount (the outside) first. Then setting the 2x4 back in place, Drill through from the other side of the frame into the 2x4. That way the two bolts go through the pair of 4x4 frame members and the 2x4 in an area on the leg frame that will catch both parts. (see below)

    material list

    Bolt on the 2x4 seat supports.

    material list

    Cut your seats and seat backs to the desired length. A 7 foot bench looks good, but an 8 foot bench is nice too, and it doesn't leave much waste on your 8 ft boards.

    Next drill and bolt the 2x8 seat backs to the leg frames: Measure/mark the front of the leg frames and the back side of the 2x8 bench backs. Measuring carefully and marking the frames and the backs, and then drilling the holes on the two parts with the drill starting on the sides of the wood that will touch each other will ensure that the holes line up and the bolts will go through. Then set the bench seat boards in place and drill and bolt them in place.

    material list


    If you like our plans, and want to send a picture of the bench(es) you build using our plans, email them to me, and I will post them here.

    Shopping List

    All Pressure treated lumber (or your choice)
    1. (2) 8ft 4x4s
    2. (4) 8ft 2x8s
    3. (24) 5 1/2" 3/8" Carriage bolts, and flat washers and nuts (galvanized)
    4. (2) 4" 3/8" Carriage bolts, and flat washers and nuts (galvanized)

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    Check out the benches our readers have built: Click Here

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