Introduction: Kid Sized Life Guard Stand

This small scale lifeguard tower was supposed to be a "nice little decoration" for outside of the beach house.  Modeled after the Ocean City Beach Patrol guard towers, it took a few hours to build and a few more to paint.  Basic woodworking skills are needed, but  the hardest part is painting in the lines of the stencils.

Step 1: Materials

To make this you will need;

1/8 plywood half sheet
1/2" trim(optional)
wood screws
outdoor paint(white, aqua, blue, red)
Paint supplies(brush, roller, tiny brushes)
Stencil - 2"

The tools I used are in the picture.

Step 2: The Build

Begin by cutting the 2x4s.   The front two at 4' and the back two at about 3 1/2.  Make them as long as you like to have the roof line slope the way you want.   Lastly cut eight  1x4's to 32".

Now screw the 1x4's into the 2x4's to make the bottom frame seen in the picture.  Four screws might have been excessive, but I want it to hold up.  I always predrill my holes, but that is up to you.

Screw on the top front and back pieces so that you can cut out the angles for the sides.   Sorry I didn't make a detailed drawing but you should be able to eye it up.  

Cut out 8 1x3's and 2 1x4's  for the deck area and lay them all out to get a feel for the spacing.  The front and back 1x4 pieces will be slightly shorter than the rest.   You could notch them to fit or cut small corner pieces as shown in the picture.

After putting a few boards down, add a support 2x4 under the decking.  Finish putting the rest of the boards in, spacing as needed.

Now measure and cut the plywood sides.   Screw them into the posts and then add a top rail of 2x4's.    

Measure twice and then cut bottom supports for each side.  They are more for show, but do add some strength to the tower.  

Finish off by adding trim to the sides.  The real towers have it, but you could just paint it to look trimmed out.  

Step 3: Finishing

I wood filled most of the visible screw holes and sanded any rough edges. 

Two coats of white paint, then inside with a turquoise color.  Tape off the white areas before painting the dark blue on the outside.   A few minutes of prep can save a lot of time fixing mistakes. 

Stencil in whatever messages you want.   The guard towers near us say  "WATCH YOUR CHILDREN" but that seemed a bit harsh so I chose my own sayings.

After an hour or so of detailed lettering.  Protect your hard work with a coat or two of polyurethane.  Be careful what you use, the kind I bought yellowed the white paint a bit but looked good on the other colors.

All done.   I hope you can use this instructable to build your own kids lifeguard tower.  If you do, please post a picture I'd love to see how it turns out.  

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