Sawhorses are indispensable for a normal household or a shop. You can use them for painting, work piece support, work bench support with a piece of plywood or door, and with a little imagination, they can be used in many other different ways like magic. The folding sawhorses are particularly valuable, as they can be stored with very minimum space, carried in your vehicle, and set up quickly when you need them.


There are many ways to make folding sawhorses, and it’s not the intention to claim that this is the best way, it's just my way of doing it. If somehow there’s a design details that has been seeing somewhere else, that means either the design was inspired by the other fellow designer's creative mind, which is really appreciated, or all good engineers follow the same physics & design principle - simple, functional, most efficient in strength and maximize material usage. I am sure there are some rooms for improvement for this project, please comment with your idea, and we’ll make it better –  will try to make another pair in the near future if necessary.


One more thing to take consideration, the sawhorses were not tested to see how much weight that they can hold up, except I only jumped up and down on one of them with my 175lb body, so they can probably hold at least 200lb each without a problem.

Step 1: Materials

I started with some leftover 1x6 (5.5” x 3/4”) from here and there for the legs, and one piece deck board as beams (treated 5.5" x 1") but didn't have enough for 4 beams, so I replaced one of them with just a 1x6. An 8' 1x6 will yield 3 leg pieces with almost nothing to spare if the the final height stays at 29". Using 1x6 because it’s fairly light and reasonably wide, that will give a chance not to use stretchers at the bottom.

The leg pieces are 31 1/8" long to get 29" of sawhorse finish height, based on the calculation that I will show in next page. The regular sawhorses are 30" high, a few reasons to not go for 30”,

We as regular person normally get 8' boards from the home center, they are 96". If we want to have 30" sawhorse height, then the leg stock would be a little over 32" long, with miter and bevel cut on the boards for this application, we will not get 3 leg pieces out of one 8’ board, our goal here is trying to use up the board and create minimum waste.

In case you do need 30" height or more, you can always add another piece (which will also become the sacrificial piece that you can cut into and replace when it's in bad shape), or even a 6" to 8" high torsion box on the top to make the dimension you would like, and make it the torsion box work table if you need. I built a couple of sawhorse extensions for use of my table saw out feed table set up, click the link if you are interested to see a way to increase the sawhorse height without making another set.

Picture is showing the sawhorses been used in my other project, holding a bunch of 2x materials for part of my basement storage shelf units.

About a million years ago my dad knocked together a couple of almost-identical saw horses out of some reclaimed lumber and door hinges. There were a couple of differences between my dad's design and yours. <br> <br>First, the hinges were *below* the top of the saw horse. That causes the top edge of the saw horse to pinch together. But my dad cagely planed away a bit of the top, inside edge of each top piece to provide some clearance. <br> <br>That gave him both a straight top to the saw horses - no hinges standing above the line of the horses - and made it tougher to hit the hinges when sawing. <br> <br>Also, rather then a chain and eye bolts he drilled a small hole in each leg and a knotted bit of rope. <br> <br>Dang, I'd forgotten about those horses and they were pretty sweet. Cheap, strong, storable, easy to handle, easy to make.
I love the idea of the knotted rope, as it can be used to tie the legs together when folded. Dad's are great... thanks
Thanks for the comment, Allen. <br>As I said in step2 and showed in the second picture, I was planning on put a couple of piece of boards on one side of the folding piece along the beam, it acts as a sacrificial piece, as well as to gain more height for the sawhorse, and the edge of that board will also be higher than the hinges. <br>To do what your dad did involves more woodworking and machining processes, the gate hinges (being the tapered shape) will also be difficult to aligned/attached in order to keep them at consistent locations and work properly. It will need some kind of spacer to do that. Appreciated your input, I'll try to do that on my second pair for the improvement.
I used to make these in the wood shop I worked at but I used all 3/4&quot; material with no angles......I made a T out of 3/4&quot; and 1/4&quot; to drop down in the slot...Your use of angles is a great improvement...
Amazing!! I'm going to build some of these pronto!!
Nice job! I especially like your detailed drawings.
Thanks. They were a little rough, but I tried to show my thought process with notes and some other lines still on there.
Fantastic! This is a genius design. :D
Thanks for the encouragement.

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