Wanda's All-weather Birthday Balcony Bench-box (made From Pallets)




About: I am an arts and crafts teacher in a secondary school in the Netherlands. (www.taborcollege.nl). I love making things. Especially out of nothing, worthless materials, garbage and cheap stuff. Besides that I...

My girlfriend Wanda just moved from an apartment with a dry balcony, because the upper neighbors balcony was her roof, to an apartement with a balcony without a roof. So things get wet and blown away by the wind. She likes some cosy stuff on he balcony like flowerpots and pillows. With sunny weather no problem off course but we've got some pretty rainy and windy days here in Holland so she wanted a waterproof box to keep things tidy and weatherproof and even better if it would double for a bench......well...: It happens she has her birthday the 4th of april (yes,that's today) and I just like to make stuff out off pallet wood....So let's fix that box.

Step 1: Materials and Tools

Apart from the pallets I used the following tools and materials:

To dismantle the pallets

  • crowbar
  • pliers
  • steel brush

For making the box:

  • saw (I usually use my Japanes one but a normal one will do as well)
  • circle-saw
  • screws
  • a drill/screwdriver
  • a rule
  • a tacker and staples
  • a pencil
  • some imitation leather
  • foam
  • silicon caulk
  • caulking gun
  • laquer
  • a brush

Step 2: Prepare Pallet

I could tell a lot about how to dismantle a pallet but I think there are enough, and probably much better instructables, about that so take a look at for instance this one.

I used a few for this one, I can't really tell you how much pallets exactly because they come in a lot of different sizes and I had a lot more that I will use for other projects.

Enough for now is to say that you'll have to remove all nails and try to take them apart as careful as you can otherwise you will only end up with fuel for a barbecue.

Step 3: Meassure and Cut

For this box I used the following lengths:

  • 77 cm 10x - long sides
  • 38 cm 10x - short sides
  • 50 cm 8x - corners
  • 88 cm 5x - the top
  • 33,5 cm 2x- the top
  • 38 cm in half in the length - the handles

I used a piece of flake-panel 35 cm by 77 cm for the bottom and one of 30 cm by 70 cm for the seat. This can be made of other plywood or underlayment as well off course.

Step 4: Construct and Screw

Ok, now some serious construction work.

I started with the corners and then screwed the short sides on these. When made both the short sides fit in the long sides and after that screw two slats on the insides at the bottom of the box. On these slats the bottom plate will fit.

Step 5: Bottom and Top

Now the rest of the wood will be used for the top-lid.

Just five planks hold together by screws and the two 34,5 cm planks. If placed good these will fit on the inside of the box.

Now make the bottom out of plywood of your choice (or even make it out of more pallet wood) and fit it on the slates at the bottom of the box.

The box will be ready if it will fit and hold two kids in it....

Step 6: The Seat

I had some rest foam lying around and glued two pieces together with Bisontix. Than glued the foam on the flake-wood and than after cut it in size, tacked the purple imitation leather around the foam. Just try to go from one side and than tack it on the opposite side and so round.

The seat I screwed on the lit. But first did some finishing

Step 7: Make Watertight

I used silicon caulk to seal all the holes and cracks. A bit of a dirty job if you are not careful. Try some water with soap on your finger to spread the silicon out.At

Step 8: Finishing

At the end I screwed the handles on and did some finish with laquer, but off course you could use any stain, paint or other sealer to protect the wood. Remember this was a pallet and depending on the state or treatment of the wood in it's former live it will need more or less protection against the weather.

I hope this will be some inspiration for you, I enjoyed making it and even enjoyed it more when I gave it to my girlfriend who is very happy with her box.

Make a Box Contest

Runner Up in the
Make a Box Contest

Hand Tools Only Contest 2016

Participated in the
Hand Tools Only Contest 2016



    • Classroom Science Contest

      Classroom Science Contest
    • Growing Beyond Earth Maker Contest

      Growing Beyond Earth Maker Contest
    • Paint Challenge

      Paint Challenge

    8 Discussions


    3 years ago

    Your birthday gift to the 'Object of your Heart' is sturdy, attractive, functional and a permanent declaration of your desire to make her happy! (Did you carve/or burn a special message inside the box to her )? I hope so!

    1 reply
    Dave AYourMagesty

    Reply 3 years ago

    Well, I planned to do it but didn't have enough time (and I can't tell here of course if I stil will do, because she might read this ;-) )


    3 years ago

    how long do you have to leave the 2 kids in it?? :)

    1 reply
    Dave Adbuckley6

    Reply 3 years ago

    For as long as they are big enough to get out of th box by themselves or small enough to close the lid ;-)


    3 years ago

    Nice bench box. I like that you kept its natural color. Looks very sturdy. Your photos and instructions were easy to follow. Good luck in the contest.

    1 reply

    3 years ago

    Really great pallet project!! The view from the balcony looks nice too. Thanks for sharing

    1 reply