Introduction: How to Make a Yard Refuse Bag Stand

I don’t mind mowing the lawn, but I always seem to have a problem getting the grass clippings into the refuse bags that our city requires us to use.

You stand there, looking like a fool trying to manage the refuse bag and the lawn bag, knowing that your neighbors are staring at you out their windows, laughing at you.


All paranoia aside, I decided to do something about it. I made a lawn bag stand out of ¾” PVC and a few fittings that I ordered online and I added a couple of features that I thought would help.

Here are some of the ‘features’ of my particular design:

1.Fits the standard yxyxy paper yard refuse bag.
2.The legs bend so that the bag slips over easily, when upside down.
3.Stands upright without assistance, even when empty, as it is weighted down by sand.
4.Stops at the ‘fill line’ of the standard paper refuse bag.
5.Has room at the top to get lawnmower bag into the bag without spilling.
6.  Slips out easily when done.
7.  Also works as a trash can with a trash bag inside of it (attach some clips).
8.Magically turns a lovely green to match your lawn after you use it for a while (ok, not really a feature).

As usual, please leave your comments on suggestions to improve on the basic design. If you have questions about PVC, see my previous Instructable PVC 101.

It costs about $25 to make.

Step 1: Parts

For this project you will need PVC pipe and Fittings. As I’ve mentioned in my other Instructables, I get mine from

To construct the yard stand, you will need the following:

(2) 10’ lengths of ¾” PVC pipe from HD, Lowes, hardware store, etc.
(4) 3/4” 3-Way PVC Fittings
(4) 3/4”  4-Way PVC Fittings
(8) 3/4” PVC Internal End Caps
A small amount of sand, or some other weight.
PVC Cement
PVC Pipe Cutter or other method of cutting PVC.

Step 2: Cuts

First we will need to cut the PVC Pipe up into the different segments that will make up the stand. I’ve attached a diagram on how to cut these from 10’ lengths of PVC Pipe. What you should end up with is:

8 x  9.5” Segments

4 x 12.5” Segment

4 x 17.5” Segments

Step 3:

This part is really entirely optional, and it’s up to you to implement, but I’ve had a problem with the wind catching the bag when empty and tipping it over, so I wanted some to make the ends of them weighted.

I took one of the 9.5” PVC Segments and cemented an internal end cap that I got from Formufit onto it, then filled the rest of it with sand that I stole from my 2-year-olds sandbox. I packed it in really good, leaving about ¾” of an inch at the top to allow room for the second end cap to be cemented to. What you end up with is a sand filled tube with caps on both ends.

This will give some weight at the bottom of the bag, to keep it from tipping.

Step 4: Top Frame

The top of the stand is assembled by putting the 3-Way fittings onto both ends of the 12.5” PVC segments. These are then cemented in place (be sure to make sure they are in line with each other!).

Next, make a complete square by putting two of the 9.5” PVC segments into the perpendicular ends of the 3-Way Fittings. Again cement them together.

It may not hurt to do a dry fit on this first (hint-hint).

Step 5: Center Frame

The center box is put together the exact same way as the top box, except you will use the 4-Way fittings instead of the 3-Way fittings.

Again use the 12.5” and the 9.5” segments of PVC pipe in the same manner.

Step 6: Final Assembly

To put the rest of the yard stand together, I’ve attached a SketchUp diagram showing final assembly and how everything fits together.

The weighted ends actually go in place at the bottom, directly into the 4-Way fittings. I highly recommend cementing everything, as mine takes quite a bit of abuse (throwing it across the yard when I step in poo).

Step 7: Use

To use it is pretty simple:

1.Flip it over and bend the legs in slightly, this will make it easier to slip on the bag.
2. Flip it back over upright and you have a free-standing yard bag.
3.When you dump your lawn clippings into it, you can rest the lawnmower bagger directly on top of the structure and give it a good shake to get it out.

Also works great for leaves. You can lay it down sideways and sweep/rake your leaves directly into it.

Step 8: Reference

Here are a couple of items for reference:

As in my usual anally-ness, you can download a Google SketchUp file from here to see how I built mine, and modify it for your needs.

Again, I got the 3-way and 4-way fittings from Formufit at

I got the PVC fittings for SketchUp from the 3D Warehouse here.