Introduction: Summer Shed From Recycled Materials

About: I'm a simple guy from a simple country called Latvia. I enjoy making useful (and sometimes not so useful) stuff to make people around me happier!


This spring, while cleaning our yard near the country house, we decided to cut down an apple tree. An idea instantly came to my mind! I should make a table on the apple tree stump and a bench around it.

So I planned it really carefully, when another awesome idea came to my mind! Instead I should make a summer shed!! And so I started to make my idea come true..

I just want to mention, than I am not a professional in any possible way, all this work I did alone! I did receive some advice from other more experienced non-professionals. With this I want to say that my ways of doing some of these things might not be correct, but they definitely are acceptable! You should follow these instructions at your own risk!!

Tools and Materials:

  • Lots of power tools (planer, drill, rotary saw, screwdriver etc.)
  • Chisels
  • Hammer
  • Saw
  • Wrenches
  • Nails
  • Screws
  • Pencil
  • Angle tool
  • Angle grinder
  • Wood
  • Cement
  • Gravel
  • Water

Step 1: Groundworks

I started with cleaning the place.

There was a little elevation on the ground which I took off. I used the spare dirt to make the ground of the shed in the same level! But it wasn't enough, in total I brought 17 more medium sized wheelbarrows full of soil!!

Also I found some big rocks, which I dug into the ground. (At first I wanted to make the entire floor of the shed from rocks, however the ground there was mostly clay, and it was really hard to dig it).

Step 2: Foundations

For the foundations I found a simple solution! Instead of casting (what's the precise name of this process?) the foundation, I made separate parts of it, which I later dug into the ground! The metal rods are L shaped with two holes a the top of them. The hardest part was to make sure that the rods are standing straight!

I oiled the bucket, but still it wasn't possible to take the concrete block out of it, so I had to cut it open. For the next blocks I simply duct taped the bucket.

Step 3: Structure

All the wood for the structure, was reused wood from an old barn that we demolished a couple years ago. We stored the wood that was in somewhat good condition, and as it turned out it was a good decision to do so.

  • First, I gathered all the wood for the structure, and planed the wood until reached the desired smoothness.
  • Then I cut it to the required length.
  • When that was done, I started to gouge a groove in the biggest beams, which were meant to be placed vertically (I hope this is said clearly enough as English is not my native language).
  • I did the same for the horizontal beams, and then connected the vertical and horizontal ones (without bolting them together).

I made the grooves in 4 vertical and 6 horizontal beams.

Step 4: Foundation Again

  • First, I dug out holes in the ground.
  • I put some sand in the holes and put the concrete blocks in the holes.
  • Then I carefully put the vertical beams on the blocks and bolted the wood and metal rod together.
  • I did the same for the rest of the vertical beams, and connected the horizontal beams until the structure was done and almost stable.

Step 5: The Roof

Unfortunately I was so excited and enthused, that while making the roof structure, I forgot to take any pictures :((

It's really hard to explain, but I'll try! :)

  • First, I cut two short pieces of beams, considering how high from the horizontal beams I want the roof to be, and put them vertically in the middle of two opposite top horizontal beams.
  • Then I got another horizontal beam (the same lenght) which put on these shorter ones.
  • Then at the each side I connected 4 diagonal supports.
  • After that I put 4 long planks horizontally on the diagonal supports and started placing the roof on.
  • For the roof itself, I used thin planks. I nailed one on another and so on, until the roof was finished.

Step 6: The Walls

For the lower parts of the walls I again used planks, which already had been used. I simply planed them, so giving these planks another hopefully long life..

  • First I gathered all the planks I needed, planed them, and cut them to the required length.
  • After that I started screwing them to the walls.

Of course, once again, I was too excited and forgot to take pictures, while putting in the windows. It was fairly easy, and anyone who can come to as far as this step, surely can put in a couple of windows :)

Step 7: The Bench

Surely I wasn't going to leave the shed empty! So I made a very simple bench.

  • First, I gathered all the materials, and planned, how the bench will look.
  • Then I again made grooves on the required places and connected the pieces.
  • After that I put some planks on top of it, and added a few legs and supports to the bench.
  • When it was ready, I put it into the shed, and connected it with the wall.

Step 8: The Ground

At first I thought that I might make the ground by digging rocks into it, but soon realized that it would be too much of a work to me, so I simply covered the ground in agrofilm (to prevent plants from growing) and on top of it I put a lot of sand and gravel! Easiest and cheapest solution I could think of!

Step 9: The Finishing Touches

This was my biggest project so far!! It took me more than a month to make and finish it, but it was totally worth it!

I'll be honest, it was physically very hard (especially making the structure). To find the right beams, right planks, to look through hundreds of planks and different woods to find the real one, it really was difficult, but hopefully this shed will stand there for many years and make my family, me and our friends happy for years to come!!

On the one side, I finished it, on the other, there are parts, which I would like to improve. Also I haven't made a table yet (maybe another Instructable?!), that's why the stump from the tree is still standing there!

In the end I want to say, that if you actually try to make this (or already have made), please show me, I really would like to see!!

Good luck and be careful!!

Concrete and Casting Contest

Participated in the
Concrete and Casting Contest

Epilog Contest VII

Participated in the
Epilog Contest VII

Outside Contest

Participated in the
Outside Contest