How to Build a Barnwood Bench

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Weathered barn wood salvaged from old barns is sturdier and more durable than most other recycled wood because it was used to build structures intended to last for decades, if not centuries. The wood can be used to create handy furniture for a rustic or country setting. Build a barnwood bench as a patio seat, end table or a comfortable resting spot while removing shoes in a mudroom. A simple bench requires few cut pieces and can be crafted in an afternoon.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • 2-by-6 barn wood boards--three 6-foot lengths or several scraps at least 18 inches long
  • Table saw
  • Drill, 1/32-inch bit and screwdriver bit
  • 2 1/2-inch wood screws, 12
  • Measure and cut six 18-inch lengths from 2-by-6 barn wood using a table saw. Two are for the seat and the remaining four are for the legs. Cut one 15-inch length from 2-by-6 barn wood for a bench shelf.

  • Measure and cut four, 1 1/2-inch-wide by 9-inch-long pieces from scrap 2-by-6s. These are the braces for the seat and the shelf.

  • Lay the two seat boards side-by-side on your work surface. Place a brace across the boards and centered between the two outer long edges, 1 1/2 inches from one cut end. Repeat with the other brace on the other cut end. Use a 1/32-inch drill bit to evenly space four pilot holes along the length of each brace and into the seat boards. Insert 2 1/2-inch wood screws into the pilot holes and attach.

  • Lay two leg boards side-by-side on your work surface. Place a shelf brace across the boards, centered between the two outer long edges and halfway between the top and bottom edge of the legs. Attach in the same way as the seat braces. Repeat with the remaining two leg boards and shelf brace.

  • Lay the seat with the braces facing up. Place an end of one leg into the 1 1/2-inch space between one seat brace and the end of the seat. Position the leg with the brace facing inward. Evenly space four pilot holes along the seat brace, through the side of the brace and into the leg--alternate those screws with the screws holding the brace to the seat. Insert 2 1/2-inch wood screws and attach. Repeat with the other leg on the other end of the seat.

  • Stand the bench up. Slide the shelf board between the legs and place the ends on top of the shelf braces. Evenly space four pilot holes along each end of the shelf through the top of the shelf and into the brace. Insert 2 1/2-inch wood screws and attach.

Tips & Warnings

  • Lumber is referred to in inches prior to the milling process. A 2-by-6 is actually 1 1/2 inches thick by 5 1/2 inches wide.

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  • Photo Credit abandoned image by Ryan LeBaron from Fotolia.com
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