Build a Wooden Bench for Less

Build this solid, durable, inexpensive bench in a couple of hours

Assemble this sturdy bench from two 10-foot 2x8s, glue and a handful of screws. A novice can complete it in a few hours.

By the DIY experts of The Family Handyman Magazine

TIME

One day

COMPLEXITY

Simple

COST

$20 - $100

Bench materials and assembly

Need outdoor seating in a hurry? This simple bench, based on author and ecologist Aldo Leopold's classic design, can be constructed in a couple of hours. All it takes is two boards and 18 screws, for a cost of less than $25.

Cut the legs from a 2x8 x 10-ft. piece of rot-resistant wood (Photo 1). Cut the seat and backrest from an 8-ft. 2x8.

Lay out and assemble the sides as mirror images, using the seat and back pieces for alignment (Photo 2). Join the legs with three 2-1/2-in. deck screws and construction adhesive. Predrill all the screw holes with a countersink bit to avoid splitting the wood. Finally, set the sides up parallel to each other and glue and screw the seat and back into place. Finish the bench with a coat of exterior oil or stain.

A Cutting List is available in Additional Information below.

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Additional Information

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Required Tools for this Project

Have the necessary tools for this DIY project lined up before you start—you’ll save time and frustration.

  • Circular saw
  • Drill/driver, cordless
  • Countersink drill bit
  • Speed square

Required Materials for this Project

Avoid last-minute shopping trips by having all your materials ready ahead of time. Here's a list.

  • 2x8s
  • Construction adhesive
  • 2-1/2-in. deck screws
  • Exterior finish