This instructable is made entirely from reclaimed timber and left over laminate and semi-solid flooring from when I was flooring my house. The solid wood came from old benches which were going to be thrown away by a local school. While buying new timber is more convenient and easier to work with, I love working with reclaimed materials to create something new. I think it is worth the extra effort. I have used some of this wood in another project you can see it here Another project. Instead of throwing away the excess laminate flooring that I had left over, I decided to make a storage bench using it. This way there was no waste, and the bench is a perfect match to the floor!
Step 1: Have a Look at the Video Below.
Have a look at the video above to see how I built the chair from a bath tub from start to finish.
Step 2: The Wood & Cutting List.
As I said in the introduction the solid wood came from a school. This was the last of the wood that I had after making another project a few months ago. The link to this project is in the introduction.
Top: 976mm x 400mm x 30mm
Legs: 4 @ 445mm x 70mm x 30mm
4 @ 445mm x 40mm x 30mm
Front & back rails: 2 @ 900mm x 70mm x 30mm
2 @ 760mm x 70mm x 30mm
Side rails: 2 @ 320mm x 70mm x 30mm
2 @ 240mm x 70mm x 30mm
Slips to hold floor: 2 @ 900mm x 25mm x 20mm
2 @ 270mm x 25mm x 20mm
2 @ 100mm butt hinges plus screws.
Approximately 400mm of chain, 2 washers and screws.
The following will depend on the size of the flooring you are using. I used:
Approximately 5 lengths of laminate flooring.
1 length of semi solid flooring.
Also needed is wood glue, 75mm screws, panel pins, wood filler and sandpaper.
Step 3: Cutting.
As my table saw is broken I had to rip the wood to size with a circular saw and a straight edge (spirit level). I clamped the straight edge to the wood to act as a guide for the saw. I ripped the pieces about 2mm wider than the finished width required. This is to allow for cleaning up the edges. In the final picture you can see all the wood required for the framing of the bench.
Step 4: Joining the Wood for the Bench Top.
The finished width of the top is 400 mm so I had to join two pieces of wood to make up that width. To do this I placed two pieces of wood flat on my bench and pushed them together to check the joint line. I then marked a number of places where I would be drilling holes for dowels to reinforce the joint. After marking the top and using a square I transferred the lines to the edges of the wood. Then using a marking gauge I marked the centre of the edge where the holes were to be drilled. Using a drill and bit I drilled all the holes I just marked.
Step 5: Gluing the Top.
I placed glue in all the holes and then tapped in the dowels. I then spread more glue onto the edges of the top before pushing the two pieces together. I clamped the pieces together, wiped off any excess glue and the set aside to cure.
Step 6: Cleaning Up the Old Wood.
While the glue was curing I set about cleaning and sanding all the solid wood for the frame. This took a good bit of time. There were a few coats of paint on the wood and lots of chewing gum stuck to the underside! To sand the edges I clamped the pieces together, this makes sure the wood is all the same width and also the sander will not rock when sanding a narrow edge.
Step 7: Marking & Cutting.
As I was going to be using dowels to join the frame all the joints were butt joints. I marked all the pieces for the frame. Wherever pieces were the same length I marked them at the same time so they would all be the same size. When all was marked I used a chop saw to cut everything.
Step 8: Marking the Joints, Gluing and Clamping.
With everything cut I placed the pieces onto a bench and set them in position to mark all the joints in the same way as I marked for the dowels on the bench top. I made sure to number each joint so I would not mix them all up when drilling the holes. I then glued and clamped each side of the bench. I had to do this one side at a time as I didn't have enough clamps,
Step 9: Rebate for the Panels.
I used a router with a rebate bit to cut out a section on the inside edges of the bench to allow for the fitting of the laminate floor panels. This has to be done before assembly as it will be inaccessible when assembled.
Step 10: Frame Assembly.
As I was going to be painting the frame I decided to screw the sides of the fame together, I drilled holes which I would later fill with wood plugs and when sanded and painted would not be noticeable. I glued and put 3 screws in each side of the frame.
Step 11: Cleaning and Preparing the Top.
As the frame was curing I sanded the top and using a jig saw I rounded off the two front corners of the top. Now with a round over bit in my router I eased the edges on the top.
Step 12: Fitting the Hinges.
To fit the top to the frame I used two 100mm butt hinges. I marked their position and using a utility knife carefully marked the outline of the hinge. I removed most of the material with a router and then cleaned it up with a chisel and then screwed it in place.
Step 13: Strips to Hold Floor.
To have somewhere for the floor to sit, I cut some strips and glued and pinned them in place.
Step 14: Painting.
I filled any holes with filler and when dry I sanded everything smooth. I removed the hinges again to paint. I applied a coat of a primer/ undercoat and then two coats of white gloss paint. I painted everything now so I would not have to mask all the panels off later.
Step 15: The Floor.
I cut some pieces of semi solid flooring which I had left over and placed them in the storage bench. I used the semi solid flooring as it’s stronger than the laminate.
Step 16: Laminate Panels.
To fill in the sides of the bench I used some walnut laminate flooring. I cut it on my chop saw and clicked it together. I rounded the 4 corners of the panel so it would fit in the corners where the router had not reached. I was not too worried about the look on the inside of the box so I just screwed the panels into place.
Step 17: Reassembly.
With the panels in place it was time to reattach the hinges and top. To stop the top from falling back when opened I added a chain. I screwed it in place with screws and washers. This was the only part I had to purchase. The chain cost €1.80 from a local hardware store.
Step 18: Thats It.
That's it...the finished storage bench!! If your house is like mine you can never have enough storage. That's why this is a great project as it provides storage along with seating while using up wood that would probably have ended up being dumped or left to rot somewhere. Thanks for viewing!
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