Friday, November 22, 2013

"I DID IT" - My Wooden Pallet Potting Bench

                   Perseverance, late nights, sore muscles, and determination but
                                                           "I DID IT"!!
                   (I feel like Scarlet O'Hara, though, in "Gone With the Wind"
                when Rhett saw her hands, after she'd been working in the fields,
                               and said "those aren't the hands of a lady!"
                           I'm going to need a manicure, a lot of hand lotion and rest
           for my weary muscles now that this Pinterest project is almost done!
Potting bench with iron headboard to hang tools from
                         I am so proud that I can finally post the picture of my
                          almost finished Pallet Potting Bench for my garden.
             Actually, it still needs the top boards that will surround the sink
         that I'll eventually put in the middle. I'm still on the hunt for a used one
                          and I didn't want to cut the boards for that until I know
                                                how big the sink will be.
                        I want to thank a few people for their help along the way:

- My friend's husband, Bill, who lent me his "SuperBar" to pry the boards
   off the pallets
- Harbor Freight and their sale coupons and the nice gentleman shopper
   who helped me fix my circular saw in the store! I LOVE this store!
- My brother who lent me his sander and reminded me how to use a
   circular saw
- My friend's husband, Jim, who cut the nails off one board that I had
   given up on
- My friends on FB who "liked" my status and encouraged me to not give up
- My God who kept me safe while using power tools and gave me the
   strength and health to persevere
                                                          Lessons Learned:
- The right tools make the job easier and the results more pleasing.
- Just like in making a quilt, measure twice - cut once and the more
   accurate the cut, the more likely the pieces will line up and go together
   like they should.
- If it looks easy on Pinterest, it probably won't be.
- Taking apart a pallet is NOT easy and I may never do a project with them

  BUT I love my bench and I know what I want in my stocking for Christmas -

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Potting Bench Construction Day 3-7

After taking a long look at my pathetic attempt at a potting bench and the pictures I had pinned on Pinterest, I decided I needed to re-design my bench and start over.
This may be the hardest project, physically, I've ever done. I will never again say "How hard can it be?" ... because the answer to that would be "It can be HARD"!

Physically, these 2x4's aren't lightweight and when you screw a bunch of them together - they get heavy. Then add to that, the pulling and wrenching of the screws/nails out of the pallet boards and you don't need to go to the gym for exercise!

       But the finished product is going to make me VERY PROUD OF MYSELF!!

Here is the bench to date - it still needs some sanding, painting, and shelves added ....
Boards cut for the bottom shelf - I'm getting better with my saw skills!

Tomorrow - PAINT!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Pallet Potting Bench - Day 2

                                                      POWER TOOLS -
                                                  they aren't for Sissy's!
                            Let me tell you - a reciprocating saw makes a HUGE
difference in making this project easier!!
But it's a very powerful tool and definitely NOT a toy!
You could do some serious, irreparable damage to your limbs
if you aren't careful.
So, armed with my new "tool" and my Safety Goggles,
I attacked the pallets and within an hour,
I had cut all the boards off the 1st pallet.
The second pallet was of a different variety
and much easier to pull the boards off of due to the fact
that they were put together with nails instead of screws.
It also had the markings on the side that I've learned are
what you want to look for in choosing a pallet.
This one was much easier to just pry the boards off
but the saw made easy work of cutting off the excess.
By the end of the Day 2,
I have the top of my potting bench ready to add legs
I'm starting to feel pretty proud of myself!

Monday, November 4, 2013

DIY: My Pallet Potting Bench - Day 1

                                                    How hard can it be?
That's always been my "mantra" when it comes to
DIY projects I see on the internet.
Besides, there are so many YouTube Videos online
that show you the steps -
 I'm guessing that with the right tools, I can do it too.

DAY 1:
The 1st step is to find some pallets - preferably ones
that are stamped on the side with the letters "HT" meaning "heat treated".
This, I learned means that they aren't imbedded with chemicals
that are harmful for your garden plants or yourself
when working with the pallets.
Fortunately, I found a few pallets for free from a local business
(who even helped load them into my car!)
and home I came to start my project...

Well, it turns out that taking the boards off is harder than it looks ....
using a rubber mallet, a "Superbar" (short version of a crowbar),
and a hammer, I pounded and pried, and after about an hour,
I had managed to remove only one board from the 1st pallet.
 The nails are actually partly screws and they are imbedded tight
into the pallet wood. At this rate, I could tell
 it was going to take me longer than I imagined to disassemble these things!

So, I went back to the internet,
watched a few more YouTube Videos, read more "how-to" articles,
and discovered that some people use a saw
to actually cut through the nails ...
hmmm - this seemed like a GREAT idea!

In Sunday's newspaper, Harbor Freight had a sale flyer with a
"reciprocating saw" on sale for only $19.95!
I'm not even sure what "reciprocating" means when it comes to saws
but the ad said it would cut through pallet wood AND the screws,
so it sounded like the perfect tool
to help me with my potting bench project.

Armed with my "early Christmas present to myself"
and a pair of safety goggles,
I headed home to begin again.