Picture of folding sawhorse
sawhorse 006.jpg
an easy to build, folding sawhorse -

you'll need:

4 - pieces 2 x 4, 30" long
2 - pieces 1/2" plywood, 1' x 3'
2 - 16 penny nails
1 - short piece of rope
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Step 1: Legs

Picture of legs
legs are 2x4's, 30" long - make 4 per sawhorse. Note chamfer on one end - this prevents binding when opening sawhorse.

Step 2: First side, step 1

Picture of first side, step 1
fasten plywood to two of the legs - note position of chamfers.

Step 3: First side, step 2

Picture of first side, step 2
drill holes (for pivot point)

Step 4: Second side, first step

Picture of second side, first step
hammer 16 penny nails into the other two leg at the pivot points (make sure the chamfers are positioned correctly). cut the heads off the nails, leaving one inch. instert the nails into the holes in the other legs (see picture).

Step 5: Second side, step 2

Picture of second side, step 2
fasten the second piece of plywood to the second set of legs

Step 6: Last step

Picture of last step
drill holes to attach stop rope (I didn't draw the rope, because I was to lazy to figure out how to draw a knot with Google Sketchup!) just take a piece of rope about a foot long, stick it through the holes, then tie a knot in each end (or tie it like I did in the photo of the folded sawhorse, laying on the ground, on the first page).

Step 7: Rope stop

Picture of rope stop
OK, I got off my lazy butt and figured out how to draw a rope stop - here it is.

Step 8: You're done!

Picture of you're done!
stand the sawhorse up and spread the legs apart as far as the stop rope will let them go. I've had a pair of these for twenty years, and they're still plenty strong.
russingram (author) 2 years ago
1 1/2" sheetrock screws. you could add some wood glue if you wated to be sure they never come apart...
Lightkeeper2 years ago
Maybe it's just me, but What did you use to attach the plywood to the 2x4s? Otherwise they look great.
Nice design, nice instructable! I put together two from scrap in short order. I didn't have any nails, but I did have a chunk of copper pipe left over from another project. I used 3" lengths of pipe and drilled holes with a paddle bit to make the hinges. Thanks!
russingram (author)  Shawn Stanford3 years ago
jfarry4 years ago
Very good write up, made four for myself! Extremely easy! Gave you credit of course when I did my own write up about my experiences! Thank you!!

russingram (author)  jfarry4 years ago
Awesome, I'm glad you found my instructable useful.
unclechime4 years ago
just built a set...used 35 inch legs, 1 1/8 plywood for tops(48x8), and replaced 16 penny nails with 3/8 by 8 inch bolts. feel so sturdy I am thinking twice about the retaining rope. Can stand on both of them and they feel solid(200 lbs). Will likely put rope if I use it for heavy loads.
russingram (author)  unclechime4 years ago
4airtime7 years ago
Great instructable, just made a set, one 32"& one 36" wide. I used 40" legs which gave a working height of 34-36"(thanx jackbroo). I used allthread instead of nails. These things are sturdy.
cferrando7 years ago
I just made a pair today. Nice idea and seems strong. I made mine out of 1X4's for the legs and 6" redwood dogeared fence for the span on the top. Also ripped down a couple of pieces of redwood at 2 1/2" and screwed them about 6" up from bottom of legs. This is where I attached my rope. With the rope lower on the sawhorse it seems to be sturdier. I am going to set these out in the weather for about a month to see how they hold up. If they do well without alot of warping and twisting, I will be making about 40 more. It beats paying $30 a pair at home depot. Great idea, thanks for sharing it.
jackbroo7 years ago
I just built a set. The next time I would use longer legs.
hassi7 years ago
I'll have one of these built this weekend...A darned good take on a necessary item... Cheers and a hearty "+"
russingram (author)  hassi7 years ago
cool - I'm glad to know someone else found the design to be useful!
zachninme8 years ago
Thanks for making a CAD drawing because you had no example, or no camera... (something I wouldn't do...) Cool!
russingram (author)  zachninme8 years ago
actually, I have both. I just like playing with Google Sketchup (and it's free!). I'll take a pic and post, later.
radiorental8 years ago
nice! much easier to build that the clever stackable saw horses on make yesterday

Although, maybe not as stable?

I would suggesting putting hinges on the posts to lock the folding point (hinge post to post)
russingram (author)  radiorental8 years ago
I actually saw a set on a jobsite made with hinges...they used 1x4's instead of 2x4's. I didn't have any hinges, so I came up with this idea. They're actuall pretty stable...I've put a 2x12 across them to stand on while painting.
meddler8 years ago
this is cool, more so for one with little or no carpentry skills like myself.