Cheap Treated Clothesline - Our Solar Clothes Dryer!




Introduction: Cheap Treated Clothesline - Our Solar Clothes Dryer!

About: I'm a computer engineer - but please don't judge me by that. I heat with wood, fix broken things and love camping with my family. I'm a closet solar nerd, love coupons, not scared to dumpster dive and love h…

A clothesline is an easy way to save money by harnessing the sun and the wind while saving money on energy.

We have been using this setup for years and love it. It is quick, inexpensive, attractive and functional.

Step 1: Supplies

This project was built with leftovers from DIY projects.
Each spring my local big box home store sells treated landscaping timbers and bags of concrete for $3 each.


For this project you will need

  • 4 8 foot treated landscaping timbers.
  • 4 long small lag bolts and washers (long screws will work fine too)
  • 8 2.5 inch (or longer screws)
  • 1-2 bags of quick concrete
  • cotton clothesline rope


  • Saw of some sort (hand saws will work)
  • Drill with a drill bit
  • Screwdriver or drill with correct bit
  • Tools to dig the post hole (Shovel, digging bar, post hole diggers etc)
  • Square
  • Tape measure
  • Level

Step 2: Cut the Top Piece

We are going to make 6 cuts total.

First we are going to cut the top cross pieces.

Take one 8 foot timber and cut it into two 4 foot pieces.

Step 3: Cut the Gussets

Take one 8 foot timber and cut it into four two 2 foot pieces.

Make a 45 degree cut on each end of all the 2 foot pieces. Ensure you cuts are going the correct direction. You should have a trapezoid and not a parallelogram.

Step 4: Assembly

Align the center of your top post with the center of your upright post.

Drive in two lag bolts or long screws to secure it.

Drive four screws into the support gussets. Use a square to ensure you are getting a proper fit.

Step 5: Drill Rope Holes

Drill 5 holes in the top cross member.

I did a hole at 2, 12, 24, 36 and 46 inches across the center of the top cross member.

Use a bit large enough to pass your rope through. Ensure you get full penetration from your drill bit. You may have to "chuck" it very high in the drill to make sure it goes through.

Step 6: Dig the Hole and Set the Pole

Once both end pieces are done it is time to set your poles.

Determine your pole distance. My poles are about 18 feet apart but you can set yours to whatever fits your situation.

Your holes will need to be 18-24 inches deep.

Center your clothesline pole in the hole.
Use a level and some scrap wood to hold it upright in the correct position.

Pour dry quick concrete mix into the hole. Pour a significant amount of water over the concrete completely saturating it. Leave for 24 hours.

Remove supports and pull the rope through the holes.

Hang your clothes and enjoy harnessing the power of the sun and wind to work for you.

Birdhouse (as pictured) is optional, but our birds love it.

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Participated in the
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Outside Contest 2016

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    4 years ago

    Bird doo and tree sap can happen to anybody's laundry, but we lived on the route for SAC refueling practice. Jet fuel and refueling lube are nasty!


    5 years ago

    Great project! Drying your laundry outside is just common sense! Using a clothes dryer is very wasteful and the clothes come out much better on the clothesline. Here in NC, there is no excuse not to use a clothesline...except for HOA rules or the outdated suburban mentality that clotheslines are not acceptable. It is in the 90s now...most clothes dry in a few minutes. I supplement the clothesline in the lawn with two lines on the deck. An additional benefit is that the UV rays from the Sun kill bacteria. Dryers don't do that.


    5 years ago

    Cool, I did not know concrete could be made this way! We have always done it with water, sand, small stones and mixing machine.

    More Cowbell
    More Cowbell

    Reply 5 years ago

    I've done it both ways. If you are making a nice sidewalk or footings for a building - I would mix sand and stones. For posts and such I find pouring a bag of quickcrete into the hole and flooding it with water to be just fine. I've been doing it that way for a long time and have yet to have any issues.

    Kurt E. Clothier
    Kurt E. Clothier

    5 years ago

    Nice work, as long as those birds don't leave you any presents on your clean clothes!