Pallets Provide Perfectly Practical Palatial Platform




Introduction: Pallets Provide Perfectly Practical Palatial Platform

About: Witzelsucht. The incredibl(y slowly) shrinking man. By day: IT cog By night: aspiring polymath

UPDATE: August 2018
We had a yurt leak that has lead to rotten "floorboards" but still: 5 years service!

Lessons learned, am now trying to rip it up, and the damn thing is still remarkably solid in most places, regretting the use of screws over nails as that is making the job harder, but conversely - obviously added to its strength.

UPDATE: August 2016 - 3 years in and still holding up

The wood needs the occasional scrub and it is bowing a bit in places, but impressively still there, all things considered.

Original Content:

A fairly obvious project, so more for interest in the sense of "yes, that works" I present our perfectly practical palatial platform, from pallets

Some background

Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the western spiral arm of the deepest darkest parts of Norfolk lies a large legoland estate containing our tiny legoland house. This house has a problem, namely two increasingly large children taking up space with their long, gangling teenager legs, eggs-boxes and modern ways.

So we did the only logical thing possible:

We’ve now put a yurt in our garden
If that seems middle class, beg your pardon
but it isn't pretension
it’s more that an extension
was too much a financial burden

But, before you erect a yurt you need a platform for it and (at the required size of 6x6 m) that was going to be yet another big dent in our non existent pot of gold.

Can you guess what we did?

Step 1: Bits and Bobs

You will need

Some Pallets (6x6m platform = 12 3x1m pallets)

Some previously flattened area of ground

Some weed matting or other semi-permeable sheeting

Some wood treatment (we used this stuff:

Cladding timber (we used some 10mm tongue and groove shed cladding (definitely not good enough to be used for anything solid like a deck you'd be mad)

Lots of screws

Several decent screw bits

A few spare brick, rocks and other precise levelling equipment

And finally, ideally, you need to be a good 40kilos lighter, 10 years younger or just not be a wussy office jockey with not a day's decent manual labour to you because I built this 2 years ago and I still ache.

Step 2: Spray Away

Treat your pallets and cladding

I have no pictures of this, but you still need to do it

Step 3: Precariously Position Pallets

I'm sure you get the idea

Spread your weed matting

Pallets, as level as possible, as close as possible

Prop up with bricks and rocks if (or where) needed.

Step 4: Clad Away

We screwed the tongue and groove cladding to the deck - I know nails would be quicker/cheaper/better etc.

But I had screws

And I figured anything that might help grip it all together was a good thing

Step 5: Ta-Dah! - Just Add Yurt

And there you go

For a budget of about £100 We've a platform that has lasted 2years so far and I think will see us through another winter at least

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    11 Discussions


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks - wasn't sure that it wasn't too basic an idea to post but I though it might answer the question for someone


    Question 8 months ago

    One question - where did you get 1m x 3m pallets? Love the project - perfect for my bell tent but don't fancy bolting together 30 normal palets when I could lay my hands on 12 big ones... Thanks :)


    Answer 8 months ago

    A local (Norfolk, UK) firm that makes drop in building componants used to sell them off. Sadly they no longer do, which is a shame as 6 years in the deck does need replacing :) Note this is due to poor maintenance on out part more than anything


    Reply 7 months ago

    Ahh... I went ahead with 30 little ones and ended up using 5mm ply from a local reclamation yard that was delivering during lockdown. I just could afford decking or even tongue and groove shed cladding (who knew it was so expensive!).

    I had an old field shelter which I thought I could break for parts but there wouldn't have been enough cladding to cover half the deck... I got the ply for £7 / sheet - 13 sheets then had the problem of an affordable wood preserve. I looked up the one you used and nearly got a mega pack off eBay for £90 but lost out, then did some research and realised it is 100% ferrous sulphate which you can get 3kg bag of online for just £6 - I bag does 500m2 so I did every pallet and all the ply - one coat and it's done! Some decking oil to finish the top and make it water resistant and voila!

    I ended up using screws instead of nails as the nails were just popping out when the ply was walked on as some of the pallet wood weren't very deep - I then realised I had to screw the bell tent groundsheet to the deck but that wasn't too much trouble.

    Here are some pics, and THANKS AGAIN for the inspiration and confidence to give it a go (ps. as I was taking the pics it looks like I got my Dad, daughter and cats to do most of the work but I promise I was there ;)

    ps. Do you think I should use this to start a new instructables and link back to yours? I definitely had some learnings along the way which I could share with readers?


    1 year ago

    Thanks for sharing this! Can I ask whether in retrospect you'd suggest palettes as a good thing to go for in terms of building a platform? I am looking into building my own base for a future yurt, but don't want to risk yurt damage. Also on a budget, hey ho. Thanks!


    Reply 1 year ago

    As done above the base lasted 5 years - it would have lasted longer but for the cheapy cheap top surface layer, but the biggest issue was the large corners, which despite careful planning of a slope were terrible for holding puddles. If I were to recreate this I'd try and make the base much closer to the size/shape of the yurt but that would need some careful consideration of how to shape the pallets but keep their integrity. If you're in a fairly dry location I would expect it to last longer :)


    5 years ago on Introduction

    I like what you detailed about the pallet decking, buts it says absolutely nothing about the yurt part?

    As.. where did you get it, no links, if built by scratch.. how? I was hoping for the roof design.


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Yeah, sorry this was all about the pallet platform

    The yurt was bought from:

    as a 20th wedding anniversary present to ourselves

    If you want to see it being put up here's our initial set up:

    I'd like someday to build one from scratch but that hasn't happened yet


    5 years ago

    What is yurt and where did u get the cover