Introduction: Side Yard Firewood Shed

About: I run a YouTube channel called Farbulous Creations where I make all sorts of woodworking and laser crafted projects. Check it out and consider subscribing if you like the type of projects I do.

In this Instructable, I'll show you how I designed and built a small firewood shed into the corner of the fence on the side of our house. While your situation will inevitably be different depending on the space you're working with, hopefully this Instructable gives you the confidence to build one that's uniquely yours!

If you'd rather watch a build video before jumping into the Instructable, be sure to watch the full video above. If you like it, consider subscribing to my YouTube channel so I know that this is the type of project people enjoy learning how to make themselves so that I can make more projects and videos like it in the future!


It would be silly to try to tell you exact quantities for a project like this, as yours will vary greatly depending on the size of shed you're building and the area you're building it in. That said, here's a list of tools and supplies I used, quantities not included:

Tools Used

  • Drill
  • Driver
  • Multitool
  • Circular Saw
  • Jigsaw
  • Clamps


  • 4x4 Mailbox Stakes
  • Cedar Fence Pickets
  • Cedar Boards
  • 1.25" Deck Screws
  • 2" Deck Screws
  • 3" Deck Screws
  • Corrugated Metal Roofing
  • Metal Roofing Insulation
  • Self-Tapping Sheet Metal Screws with Foam-Backed Washers
  • Satin Black Enamel Paint
  • Pea Gravel

Step 1: Build Shed Base

First up, measure the space you have available to work with. In my case, I didn't want the shed to be too deep, since it wouldn't be a shed I stepped into, but rather, one I reached into from the outside.

After securing my post stakes into the ground (and directly to the fence on the left side), I was able to build a perimeter of 2x4s to act as my shed floor. Once level, I added joist hangers and began laying floorboards.

I realized that only being secured on the left side initially, my base was losing level, so I added two cement post footings to the center of my floor, tying them to the joists with a small length of 4x4.

I also added a bed of pea gravel below the shed, which will be raised up from the ground, in order to allow for good drainage and keep weeds down.

Step 2: Install Corner Posts & Header

With the floor complete, you can install the 4x4 posts on the corners. The mailbox post stakes I used were sized to fit a true 4x4 post, but most 4x4s you buy at the big box store are actually 3.5" x 3.5" so I had to use some shims, which I trimmed flush. But only after securing the left post to the fence itself from the back, by clamping it to the fence and securing the fence rail to the post.

With both corner posts installed and secured, I could install a header beam to tie them together using 2x4 joist hangers.

Step 3: Right Wall

The wall closest to the house was next. I installed three horizontal cross-members between the back fence post and the front right post. Using those cross members, I could attach fence boards to them, but since I couldn't screw from the "correct side", I used a clamp to hold them tight to the board while securing them from the "wrong side". As I got towards the end closest to the post, I had to use my hand to hold the board tight from behind the front post.

Step 4: Roof Joist Template

I then had to determined the angle of my roof. I wanted a "lean-to" style roof, with the slope towards the front of the shed. But because I wanted to fit as much firewood inside as possible and not compromise internal storage, I kept the roof angle pretty small. From the back of the fence to the height I decided on for the front wall, my angle was only about 3º, which would be too small for a structure like a house, but plenty fine for my shed since I was using a metal roof.

If you're using shingles or such for your roof, make sure that your roof is an adequate pitch.

After determining your angle, make a template out of a piece of scrap wood that you can then trace onto the 2x4s used for roof joists later.

Step 5: Closing Gaps

Since I'm using the fence itself for two walls of my shed, I needed to close up the gaps between the existing fence pickets. To do this, I took a number of fence pickets, split them down the middle with my circular saw, and then secured them on either side of the gap.

This is admittedly not the prettiest method, but it will only be visible from the inside, so I made peace with it.

Step 6: Door Construction

For the door, I decided to build mine in place, using three boards that I had temporarily secured together with scrap wood. Once clamped together, I clamped the combined piece to the front header beam and centered it in place.

After that, I installed a series of 1x4 boards to the back of the door that would act as structural framing. I used my carpenters pencil as a spacer between these boards and the top, bottom and side boards that acted as the door frame.

Step 7: Door Trim & Hinges

After the door was assembled in place, I unclamped it, cut it to size and began trimming it out to make it look nice.

I used thicker cedar boards, cut to size and installed with deck screws. I decided on a simple design, with a single horizontal cross-member which doubled as a support mechanism for the middle hinge.

I used 6" gate hinges from the big box store. They make them in various sizes depending on your project, but this size felt right for mine.

Step 8: Front Wall Paneling

With the door complete, we can install the front wall pickets, securing them to the top and bottom framing pieces.

I sanded all the boards down before cutting and installing them so that they would accept stain better later and not be as rough.

This is where the project starts feeling done even though there's still a bit more to do.

Step 9: Roof Joists

With all walls complete, I could finish the roof joists, using the template I created earlier. I used the same 12" spacing that I used on the floor joists.

I also cut the side walls with the same angle as the the joists, after which I mounted an outer perimeter joist to each side.

Additionally, I installed a single row of horizontal cross-members between the joists to give additional material to attach the metal roof to.

Step 10: Drip Edge

Next up, drip edge. I don’t know much about roofing, but one thing Tom Silva from This Old House has hammered into my head over the years is the importance of a drip edge. When water runs off a house, the surface tension properties of water can allow it to crawl back up the side of the house if there isn’t an adequate gap between the surface the water is running down from and the siding. Drip edge, installed about a finger’s width away from the siding allows rainwater to do just that. So before installing the roof sheet metal, I installed black drip edge on the top of each wall with roofing nails, cutting it to size with a pair of sheet metal snips.

Step 11: Prepping Sheet Metal Roof

Finally I could move onto the roof itself. I decided the roof for the shed would be sheet metal, 1) because it’s relatively easy and cheap, and 2) so I didn’t have to test my first-timer roofing prowess on a structure intended to keep our firewood dry.

I used an angle grinder, taking it really slow, using a metal cutting blade. The cut was pretty rough, so I sanded it down with a sanding wheel. I had determined ahead of time that I would need two pieces of the roofing to achieve the correct width, with some overlap of course.

I wanted this roof to be black to match the drip edge, but my local big box store only sold this in green, so I figured it’d be pretty easy to paint with spray paint. Unfortunately, despite being slow and steady, it was still splotchy. Not to be deterred though, I bought a pint can of black enamel paint that I applied with a foam brushThat did the trick and I got much better results.

Step 12: Installing Roof Panels

Once they were painted, I could secure them to the roof joists. I’m using a foam insulation at both ends of the roof, meant specifically for metal roofing like this, which closes up those large gaps where the ribs are open on the ends.

For screws, I’m using self-tapping sheet metal screws with a pre-installed rubber washer on it. I could only find them in zinc coated finish, but I wanted them to be black to match the roof and blend in, so I screwed a bunch of them into a block before spray-painting the tips.

After securing the roof panels into each joist, this project, at long-last, was done.

Step 13: Stain & Wrapup

Well, after staining it with Cedar Natural-Tone deck stain that is, which should prevent it from graying over time.

I would love to offer more detailed plans for something like this, but it really doesn’t make sense to do that as 1) this was custom-built for our situation, and 2) I just built it as I went with no plans. I wouldn’t recommend going in without a plan on larger projects, but if you have a smaller project like this to tackle, hopefully this Instructable and seeing my order of operations was useful to see how you could wing your own project.

If you liked this project, please consider subscribing to my YouTube channel so that you don't miss future projects from me!

Finally, I would greatly appreciate your vote in the Backyard Contest! You can place your vote for this project below! Thanks for your consideration!

Backyard Contest

Second Prize in the
Backyard Contest