Sturdiest Stacking Sawhorses Ever


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Stacking Sawhorses. You just need seven 2×4’s.

There are about one million different ways to make a sawhorse. I’ve designed and built about four types myself! But each time I build a pair and start using them, I discover things that need improvement.

Here’s why I like this design: it’s simple to build, but elegant. It’s sturdy, but fairly lightweight. The only lumber needed to build the pair are seven 2×4’s. And best of all, they stack easily.

Stacking sawhorses made with 2x4's

A single sawhorse provides support for cutting boards. You can clamp the work piece to the top for even more support.

For a bigger work surface, drop a plywood board across two sawhorses.

Sawhorses have also become very popular in office and live/work spaces as cool inexpensive makeshift desks. In this case, I suggest building the stacking sawhorses and take the time to sand them down nice and smooth and either paint, stain, or finish them. A double thickness of ¾” plywood will be perfect for a desktop and I would screw it onto the sawhorses.

Building the stacking sawhorses

First, cut out all eight legs. Four will have 22.5° bevels on each end, and four will have 22.5° bevels on one end and 45° bevels on the opposite ends.

Arrange the legs so that one 45° bevel meets up with the face side on the other board. Make sure all the angles are facing the correct way.

Use glue and 2-1/2″ screws to connect the legs.

Align the legs by setting the cross braces on the ground and squaring up the top piece.

Screw the top and cross braces in place.

With the sawhorse tipped on its side, line up a board, draw a line where it meets with the front braces, and cut it out.

Screw these end braces into place, driving the screws into the legs.

Stacking Sawhorse Plans

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  1. Great article, Steve! Nice that no extensive tooling is required, and easy enough to speed up using a miter saw if you have one.

    A note that both links to the SketchUp file appear to point to the metric version.

  2. Interesting project! Three suggestions you might consider: 1. Use the same board to measure subsequent boards for cutting to length. I have found that using one board to measure other like parts closer to length. If you make a cut then use the use that board to mark next board put the first board aside while you cut the next. and then use the board that you just cut to mark the length of third board lay the board aside and cut the third board. then use the third board to mark the forth board for the cut… The minor error of the pencil mark will progressively lengthen the subsequent boards very rapidly.( That happened in your video.)

    2. Make the angles compound angles for the legs. Use your 22 1/2 deg. with a 7 deg. at the bottom and top. This will allow stacking without having one saw horse larger than the other.

    3. Make a jig for assembling and marking the end out of scrap plywood. Also save money by using scrap plywood for the braces on ends and lower braces.

  3. Thanks Toly – planning on making this and your suggestions are helpful. This will be my first woodworking project, but I actually was wondering too, why he didn’t use the same board to measure.


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