There seems to be a movement of people trying to make all kinds of new stuff out of used pallets. There are several reasons I wanted to jump on this bandwagon:
1. I'm a tightwad and pallets are free.
2. It's an earth friendly way to repurpose something that would otherwise end up in a landfill.
3. I like making stuff.
4. It's a challenge.
So here is my chair. This is a very simple build based on other chairs I found online, and I adapted this to the lumber sizes I had. If you have a saw, a drill, and a pallet you can make this.I designed it so it is easy to modify to your own needs. You could easily fan the back, build it with curving back and seat, or make bigger or smaller based on your lumber, skill, and your taste.
Step 1: Pallets
This was made out of a single 42"x60" pallet. It was constructed of 1x6s and 2x4s. You can easily build this out of other sizes. I'm not going to spend much time on how to disassemble a pallet, there are some great instructables on this. However, I did it with a pry bar and hammer. I had the pallet apart in under half an hour.
I did it by driving a pry bar between the boards. Pry slowly so you don't break the boards. Once they're apart drive out all of the nails.
Step 2: Get Everything Together
Lay out all of your boards (this is 2 pallets). You'll have some splintered boards, and some aren't going to be as nice as others. If they're all spread out you can easily pick and choose what boards to use. KEEP ALL OF THEM!! Some pieces will be fairly short, and even if something is splintered badly or warped, it has use if you just cut out the bad parts.
I used 1 1/2" drywall screws to put everything together, and a circular saw and cordless screwdriver.
Step 3: Cut the Rails
This is the hardest cut you'll make (and it's not that hard). Cut 2 pieces of 1"x6" 33 3x4" long. Now, measure 32 1/2" and mark. Draw a line from this mark to the corner of the board. Make a cut, this should be about a 15 degree angle. Now measure over 2" from your new 75 degree angle, and cut it off to make another 90 degree angle.
After you make the cuts, sand everything. It's much easier now than once it all gets put together. You can see sanded and unsanded boards.
Notes: Don't trust the maker of the pallet to cut everything at a 90 degree angle. I try to cut the end off the board first... that way I know it is even, plus now it's smooth.
***THIS IS AN ALTERNATE CUT FOR THE BOARD***
So, if that one is hard to follow, or if you're just wanting to make it a little easier, use these rules instead. YOU DON'T NEED TO CUT BOTH! Cut 2 pieces of 1"x6" 33 3/4" long. Now go to one corner, measure over 2" and up 1/2". Make a mark and cut that little corner off (like what is in the top left of the picture). This won't give you the nice parallel legs once it's all done, but will still sit stable on the ground. It's not very noticable, however, since this cut is at the bottom rear of the chair.
Step 4: Make the Seat
Cut 4 more pieces of 1x6 21" long.
Screw one to the front of the runners. Now measure back 19 1x2" and spread out the rest of the boards so they're evenly spaced and screw them in. Make sure that the pieces of the runner that you've cut the 2" corner off of is facing the ground. Sand everything.
You can easily use different size boards for the seat... just make sure you have at least 1/2" between the boards. This helps everything feel level and will let water run between the boards if it will stay outside.
Step 5: Make Back
Measure your gap between the runners (mine was 19 3/4") Cut two 2x4s that length. Now cut 3 1x6"s 30 1/2" and screw it all together. Start sanding.
Again, use whatever width board you have. This is flexible.
Step 6: Front Legs
Cut 2 2x4"s 20 1/4" long. Now cut a 15" angle off of each one. (If you can't measure angles, don't worry keep reading)
Now measure up 15", and screw the top of the front of the chair to the leg.
If you couldn't measure the angles, just screw the board on. Then you can see how the corner sits on the ground, draw a line parallel to the ground and cut it off. Now cut the top off parallel to the ground.
Step 7: Add the Back
Screw the back on at a 90 degree angle to the seat.
Step 8: Arms
Now measure the length from your front leg to the back parallel to the ground and cut a 2x4 for the arm. I used also cut a center brace and ran it across the center of the back to make it feel more sturdy... this is completely optional.
Step 9: Braces Under Arms
Another optional step... You can put braces under the arms. Just cut a square of 2x4 and screw under each corner of the arm. Now paint if you wish, or keep it rough, the choice is yours.