This project was born out of necessity... with a cord of firewood ordered and to be delivered we needed a place to store all of that wood ASAP! In previous years we just stacked it on a concrete pad next to the house and covered it with a tarp. Between the mice chewing holes and our dogs chasing mice in the woodpile we really only get one winter out of a tarp. A new solution to storing dry firewood was needed!
This past summer we had to replace a large section of fence around our backyard and the resulting old fence material is what makes up 90% of this firewood rack.
Step 1: Materials and Tools
Old cedar fence pickets (from rebuilding a section of fence)
Old pressure treated 2x4's (from rebuilding a section of fence)
2x4's and 2x6's (from an old heavy duty pallet)
Seymour Stack-It brackets (Amazon.com) ($20 back when I found them for making a work bench)
Leftover unused and used screws
2x2 pine boards (taking up space in the garage)
Old gate hinges
marking utensils (pen/pencil)
Step 2: Assembling the Rack
The Seymour brackets are pretty cool metal brackets that helped speed up and add a little strength to this build. They come with directions and are really straight forward...
I made a firewood rack that was 8 feet long (longest lumber I had available) and ~1 foot wide. I cut pickets to the width of the vertical posts and screwed them on for rigidity.
Step 3: Strengthening the Fence
Location, location, location! Our new firewood rack was going to be up against the fence in our back yard. This section of fence was installed by the previous owner and definitely isn't build for holding up anything but its own weight.
So let's pump it up a little! I had sections of pine 2x4 and 2x6 that came from a pallet... Initially I was going to cut up some old cedar pickets and sandwich/screw them together to make these supports. Options are always good!
Using a square I cut 45 degree angles on the (2 foot length) 2x4's and used those as the end supports for the hinged cover. These are screwed into the fence vertical posts and horizontal stringers.
The center support is made of 2x6's and is screwed into the fence horizontal stringers. The bottom one was the hardest to attach and really may not need to be screwed in place.
Step 4: Making the Hinged Cover Assembly
This really just resembles a small section of fence. In order to keep the weight down I used 2x2's that were collecting dust in the garage (sorry spiders, time to find a new home) for the frame instead of 2x4's.
The frame is a rectangle that is 8 feet by 3 feet. It has 2 additional supports spaced evenly inside that rectangle. I only used one screw per attachment knowing that attaching the pickets would give it most of its strength. Remember to measure twice and cut once when making the frame. The inner supports are shorter than the ends as shown here.
The cedar pickets attached to it are cut to 4 feet with the dog ear end (the scalloped end) still attached... I thought it would look a little fancier. If you don't like the look you can cut these off. Pickets are then attached to the 8 foot long parts of the frame with screws.
In total when the pickets are screwed onto the frame it it becomes rigid.
Step 5: Attaching the Cover to the Fence
Attaching hinges to the cover first seemed to work best, They are just evenly space starting at each end of the frame... then with a helper attaching it to the fence. I did not worry about leveling the whole thing when attaching it to the fence (top stringer) because the old gate hinges had quite a bit of slop/play in them. Just make sure they are all close to the same distance from the edge of the stringer when they are attached.
This is a step that will most likely require extra helping hands
Step 6: Adding the Rack Under the Cover
In order to make sure a whole cord of split firewood would fit on the rack I added space between the rack and the fence. This gives room for 2 rows of 16 inch long split firewood.
I cut ~20 cedar pickets to 32 inches to use as the platform of the rack and attached them to the rack and the fence.
Step 7: Final Thoughts
The hinged cover is going to rest on the rack and/or the firewood once it is stacked up. It is sheltered from the wind and heavy enough to not need a way to be locked down. For the time being an old t-post acts as the prop for the cover when adding or removing firewood from the rack. There is no current plan to add a different propping device.
Be flexible and think outside the box when working with recycled/reclaimed "stuff". It is almost never straight or the right size. Be creative when manipulating it... and have fun building it!