DIY wood raised beds

V8srfun

Active Member
Premium Member
GOLD
Apr 13, 2020
21
17
26
Pennsylvania
My wife and I built some raised beds and I figured I would share the process as well as I can with the limited pictures I took. I will start off by saying I am sorry for not taking more pictures during assembly to help explain the process.

Here in the states lumber is sold in 8,10,12,and 14 foot lengths (sorry for my ignorance but I have no idea how lumber is sold in Australia or any other country for that matter). I decided to go with 12 foot length for everything I purchased because it worked out that I had no waste with that length. Lumber is expensive so it only makes sense to do the math and make the beds so that you do not have a bunch of scraps at the end.

I did use power tools to build but they are not at all necessary so don’t feel like you can not do this if you don’t. These beds could be built with 3 or 4 basic tools. You technically only need a tape measure, hammer, and a hand saw but if you have a framing square it would be handy. The tools I used are a compound miter saw, drill, impact driver, pocket hole jig, tape measure, staple gun, framing level, ratcheting tie down strap, and my car.

I do not have access to a truck so getting the lumber home took some ingenuity. What I ended up doing was taking the passenger and back seats out of my car and using the car to transport the lumber. I have to admit I did enjoy getting a laugh out of seeing people’s reaction to me loading 12 foot long lumber in to my little Honda.

The beds are 3 feet wide 3 feet tall and 6 feet long the reason for this size was simply to have no wasted lumber. I was going to leave them 12 feet long but my wife was right by suggesting to make them 6 feet instead. Because we built them in the garage and that would have been excessively heavy and hard to move.

Now that I have everyone bored already let’s get in to some building. I started off by cutting all the lumber to length. There is no sense in wasting time getting the saw out multiple times so just do the math and find out how many of each length you need and do it all at once. Now that the lumber is cut I decided to build all the short sides first and then attach the 6 foot lengths to the pre built sides. Do yourself a favor and take your time when cutting your lumber because when it is time to assemble sloppy cuts make it harder to build square. When I am building the sides i measured side to side, top to bottom, and corner to corner. Do not forget to measure corner to corner because that will show you if you are out of square. When attaching the long boards start with the top one and work down because lumber is not perfect and no one will see any gaps at the bottom. The ratchet strap was used to pull any warped boards in to shape before screwing them together. I did leave the top board off so that I could line the bed with plastic and then cover the edge of the plastic up with the top board.

Once the beds are built and in place take your level and check if you need to remove any dirt from under any of the sides. When setting them in place don’t forget how good your eye is at helping line things up. I always get things in place using the tape measure then make fine adjustments by eye. You won’t believe how you will notice things once you step 20 or 30 feet back and look from multiple angles.

Then we filled the beds starting with some old tree limbs from when the previous owner had the property logged out Then we put in a layer of pine needles and leaves then topped off with soil.

now on to the fun part some pictures

323170E0-B0E8-45B4-A660-18DBAAE07908.jpeg


91F7A0FB-D945-45A0-9D27-1CBB0814717E.jpeg


FCE09814-9D88-4FF9-B3DB-5A7D7244D78C.jpeg


3F90DBEE-A174-497D-A442-D49C26CA8197.jpeg


E5D7A05D-C853-42D6-9B41-9628D4A3EB78.jpeg
 
  • Like
Reactions: Lucas and GKW

ClissAT

Valued Member
Premium Member
GOLD
Sep 27, 2015
1,837
885
361
Pomona, Qld
Climate
Sub-Tropical
It's amazing what you can fit into a sedan when you try! However, our police don't share our enthusiasm for using the car to cart stuff! If the boot is open or the driver impeeded in vehicle operation then watch out, a fine is coming!
 

V8srfun

Active Member
Premium Member
GOLD
Apr 13, 2020
21
17
26
Pennsylvania
Non treated spf lumber. It is either spruce pine or fur they are all sold as the same here.
I would have loved to use rough cut hard wood but I do not have a affordable source for it