Introduction: DIY Sandbox

So my Friend approached me and wanted to make a Sandbox for his young Daughter. When we figured up what the materials would cost, we decided it was better to make one that would last rather than spend the same amount of money on an inferior product.

So i drew up the plans and we headed out to the local home center. We got all the materials needed in one spot, then got back to the shop and got started.

If you would like a detailed set of plans, i have them for sale on the website you will have a more detailed layout and processes with the plans.


What You Will Need

Must Have:
10= 2x8

8 foot length 2 = 1x4 8 foot length

2” exterior screws

Wood Glue rated for exterior use

Drill with Driver Bit and Drill bits

Weed Blocking Fabric = 1 roll Play Sand = 5 bags

Optional (But Preferred):
Plunge Router With Spiral upcut bit

Staple Gun

Kreg Pocket Hole Jig ( the single hole is $20)

Pocket Hole Screws


Stain ( your choice of color) - you may leave the project raw also

Sandpaper ( 120-150 grit)

Step 1: Cut All Materials to Their Length/width

When i build any project from dimensional lumber, i first rip the two rounded edges off all of the boards. This leaves a standard 2x8" board at an actual dimension of 1 1/2" by 7"

After all the 2x8 boards have been trimmed down, they will be cut to their length in order to create all the parts for the main frame, the bottom of the sandbox and the lid.

Step 2: Assemble the Main Frame and Attach the Bottom of the Sandbox

After drilling pocket holes in the main frame, assemble two of the long boards and the two main frame sides with wood glue and screws. Then pre-drill the ends of the boards for the bottom, add glue around the perimeter of the main frame and screw the bottom boards to the main frame leaving space for rain water to pass through the box.

Step 3: Assemble the Frame for the Lid and Attach the Boards for the Top of the Lid

Using the 1x4 material, drill pocket holes in the short pieces of the lid frame. Using glue and screws, assemble the parts of the lid frame. Then, ensure the spacing for the lid boards are correct ( will cover to the edges of the box) Pre-drill the boards for the lid and attach to the lid frame with glue and screws. After the lid is totally assembled you can attach the handles for the lid just so the holes are in the correct place and you can make sure the lid frame fits properly inside the main frame. Then you can remove the handles to prepare for sanding of the box.

Step 4: Assemble the Parts for the Legs and Attach Them to the Bottom of the Sandbox

Using the offcuts left from cutting the 2x8 pieces to length, cut them to length and width for the desired height of the box. Cut one of the leg assembly parts 3/4" longer than the other to create a tenon that will later go into a mortise on the bottom of the box. Apply glue and clamps to the leg parts and ensure they are lined up properly if you have a brad nailer you may use it to hold the parts together while the glue dries.

Once the glue is cured on the leg parts, begin the layout for the mortises on the bottom of the box. After you are sure the mortise locations are correct, remove the bulk of the waste in the mortise with the router and spiral upcut bit, then fine tune the mortise with a chisel. Once you have a good fit, apply glue to the mortise and seat the leg (tenon) into the mortises and allow the glue to cure.

Step 5: Sand the Box and Apply Finish

Now that the construction is complete, sand the box with a medium grit sandpaper. If you choose to add stain, you can apply the color of your choice, although stain is not necessary. Then you will need to seal the sandbox to protect it from the elements ( mostly the sun) Spar Urethane is my preferred topcoat for anything going outside because it offers great protection to your piece and will add years of longevity in the great outdoors. After the stain and clear coat is cured, you can reinstall the handles to the lid.

Step 6: Install the Weed Blocking Fabric and Fill With Sand!

Now, unroll the weed blocking material and cut it to length. This fabric will allow the water to pass through the box and sand, while keeping the sand in the box. Fold the fabric in the corners (similar to folding a Christmas present) and use the staple gun to tack the fabric in the box.

Add the sand to the box and spread it out evenly. If you follow the plans on my website: You can fill the box with 5 bags of play sand.

Step 7: Add Toys and Kids and Have Fun!

Now all you need is some sand toys ( buckets, shovels, castle building equipment ) and the kiddos! The little one LOVED her new sandbox and the big kids even got in on the action as well. This is a great project for someone with a limited skillset and tools. If you want to build your very own Sandbox , check out the video and get a set of plans to make this project even easier!

Step 8: Go Watch the Video and Build Your Own SANDBOX!!!!

Check out the instructional video and the plans to make this simple project in just a day or two that your children will enjoy for years to come! Buying the plans

helps to support the creation of these videos and new projects from the Dimensions Wood Works shop. While you're there check out some of the other projects and FREE plans available on the website, and don't forget to...


Backyard Contest

Participated in the
Backyard Contest