Outdoor bench made from 2x4s

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Doing my part to brighten up my front yard and the world.

Inexpensive woodworking
Depending on where you get your lumber, you should be able to build this bench for under $30. It is made using seven 8-foot long 2x4s. You will also need some deck screws and a 3/4″ dowel.

I made the seat by lining up the boards on  their sides, which makes this one sturdy bench. I think it also makes it look more bench-like: similar to what you might find on a city sidewalk.

To simplify my assembly, I attached the legs with pocket holes and screws using my Kreg Jig. If you don’t have a pocket hole system, you can screw in the leg assembly using long lag screws.

Free Plans

Protecting the wood
Since this is an outdoor project, it will need some sort of finish. You can stain it, apply a clear finish, or do what I did and apply a couple coats of latex house paint. I mulled over the various options and decided to make a bold statement with humble 2×4 studs by painting them knock-your-socks-off purple. Whatever you decide, it’s a good idea to apply the paint or finish as you are building the bench: there are a lot of hard-to-reach places.

Purple paint?
I realize there will be a lot of people who will not approve of my color selection or the fact that I painted wood but I am prepared for the onslaught of YouTube comments. If  my goal was to showcase the wood’s natural beauty, I probably wouldn’t have chosen 2×4 studs. We define beauty in our own lives. Amongst all the negativity and competition for blandness, a little color can  go a long way to brightening up the world. At least a little.

*****

19 COMMENTS

  1. great little project.

    Gonna pick up a purple shirt for my wife. When are you going to have the safety third shirts in tall sizes so I can get one?

  2. Not to be a garden party-pooper but in the UK, 7 of those 4x2s from the most economy supplier would cost £45….that’s $68.50. I like the colour though.

  3. The same basic concept would make for an excellent Pallet Wood project too.

    Also… I must admit to being a tad disappointed.

    I was expecting a closing video gag from Steve after he got up from the bench and walked away from the camera. Complete with horizontal purple stripes on his shorts.

    • That bench looks very nice. Question: did the 2×3’s come with the groove routed in them already, or did you do that? It’s a nice touch either way.

      Nice looking kids too 🙂

  4. Hi I’m a complete beginner at woodworking and I’m doing this for an eagle project.

    Some things that are not clear to me are:

    1. what type of wood to use
    2. how long the deck screws need to be and as well as, how many
    3. how pocket screws work.
    4. and how much paint do i need?

    It would be really nice if you could also give me some tips 🙂
    Thanks!

  5. We did this as an Eagle project for park benches, but substituted two 4×4 legs for the four legs. Had to wing the cg/connection structure. Hope the pocket screws can withstand kids jumping around???

  6. Love the purple paint! I will be building mine today. Mine will be super low cost as I managed to snag 72 2×4’s from work for free! Did have to remove a lot of nails but you wont see them on the inner boards. The two outer boards I will use nail hole free boards. Cant wait to get started

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