Luckily, Thanksgiving was going to be at my Dad's house this year. That meant there would be lots of family members, a.k.a. free labor. We decided to rebuild the arbor while everyone was there.
Step 1: The Demo
Craftsman Reciprocating Saw:
Craftsman Work Gloves:
Step 2: The Plan
The overall footprint of the 8 4x4 posts was 16'-6" x 23'-0". The 16'-6" dimension was a pain since most lumber yards max out at 16' for dimensional lumber. I was finally able to track down some 2x12x20' pine. This meant I could have three double-beams going in the 16'-6" direction and run 2x6x12' joists in the other direction. This seemed to be not only an easy plan, but also good looking.
Step 3: The Prep - Prime and Paint
Step 4: The Beams
2) Cut the profile.
3) Clamp one of two 2x12's in place.
4) Check height and level.
5) Use nailgun to temporarily hold in place.
6) Clamp second of two 2x12's in place.
7) Level with the first 2x12.
8) Use nailgun to temporarily hold in place.
9) Mark for two 1/2" hex bolts (8" long) at each post.
10) Drill two holes per post.
11) Insert bolts and tighten with socket set
and open end wrench.
12) Repeat for the two other double beams. Be sure to level the beams to the first beam.
Step 5: The Joists
1) Put up the first joist to mark where the two notches go.
2) Cut the length and end profile with a circular saw.
3) Cut as much of the notch cuts with a circular saw. This will give you a cleaner cut. Finish the cut with a jig saw
4) After you make sure it fits, use it as a template for the other joists. ATTENTION! Do not blindly use it as a template. Variations in lumber (warping, twisting, bowing, thickness, etc.) make it necessary to check it in every position and adjust it.
5) Start placing and attaching the joists. We attached them using a pneumatic nailer. We toe nailed it on both sides, and each end of the joist.
6) After 26 joists, we were done.
7) Sink any nails that are sticking up.
Step 6: Caulk, Prime, and Paint
Step 7: The Final Touches
Clean up and move the furniture back.
Add the hanging plant hooks to the posts with a cordless screw gun:
Although the Lady Banks Rose were cut back to three feet off the ground, by this spring, they will start to cover the arbor. My Dad tells me in two years they will be as full as they ever were. Thankfully, they will now be supported by a structure that can handle the weight. Now my Dad can safely enjoy his wine outside.