Saturday, January 16, 2010

DIY: Build a Shed from Pallets (for free)

Pallets are a great way to build a shed because they are very strong. If you don't believe me, try to take pallet apart some time. Also the way they are built, means that you don't have to worry about studs. Below is a picture of the pallets as we nailed them together. We also used some wood from crates. We could only make a portion of the frame this way before it was too heavy to lift in the hole where we were placing it.

The shape where were put our shed is unusual because there is a fence on one side and a concrete wall on the other. This location is great, because it will be really hard for someone to break into our shed. However, it also made the building a little tricky because most of the shed had to built inside this shaft.

Framing the sides took one afternoon. We decided not to build any of the roof until we would have enough time to finish the shed. We didn't want to encourage any homeless folk to sleep in the space during the rainy season. Our concern was so much that homeless would be in the space, rather that it might encourage people to use the space as a bathroom - which would make it unsafe and too smelly to make a good storage space.

It took another three hours to build the roof and to attach the door. This part of the project required the use of a battery powered table saw - so we could cut the pallets to match the angle of the roof.
On the side of the shed that is next to a fence, we purposefully left some spaces that were not covered with plywood. We covered these areas with plastic so they would act like windows and let light into the shed during the day - enabling us to see what is inside. The fence keeps that side of the shed protected so that it is not possible for a person to enter the shed through the plastic windows.One benefit of using pallets to build a shed is that there is some creative storage space inside the shed. This makes the shed more functional.

The pallets provide a great way to store tools like shovels and rakes. (see photo below) Putting the tools inside the pallets, means that you don't have to worry about tripping on them.Next, we painted the shed. This helps to protect the exposed wood from water and rain. It also makes the space look prettier. We got donated paint from local painters who would rather donate the paint then spend the money on recycling it at the dump.