Weekend project

30Jul12

I have had a little front patio project in mind for a while, and with the beautiful weather we had this past weekend, it was time to get going. We wanted something that wasn’t too intrusive on our front garden, but would let us set out a couple of chairs to watch the kids play and ride their bikes in the front. The addition of a planter adds some interest, as well as gives us the opportunity to plant some flowers.

A patio like this should be a great intermediate DIY project. Break it off into smaller, individual tasks. First up, getting the platform in place. The structure is made from pressure treated 2×6’s (if your patio has a larger span than 10′ you will want to increase the joist size to 2×8’s) and the decking is cedar 2×4’s, once stained this will match the cedar T&G siding on the house.

The planter frame is a standard framed “wall” with a 2×2 top and bottom plate. I then used the off cut 2×4’s from the decking as the stand for the pots inside the planter. The top cap is clear cedar 2×4’s. While the clear cedar is quite a bit more expensive, I thought it would be worth it for such a visible part of the patio. Clear cedar is void of any knot’s or imperfections and generally give the work a more clean finish. Select tight knot  has knots and imperfections and is great for a more rustic look. A coat of stain was added to the frame before covering it all up.

To cover the planter and add that touch of modernism, I used a clear cedar 1×2 with 1/4″ reveals. The trick to this is to find a couple of scrap pieces that are the thickness of the reveal you want, then use them as spacers as you fasten the strips. I like to start at the top and brad nail the 1×2’s down the planter, this way the last piece that needs to be ripped is at the bottom and not as visible. Note: They are hard to find, but if you can get your hands on stainless steel brad nails, it will make for a much more durable outdoor project.

There you have it, the perfect weekend DIY project! I will put a coat of Sikkens Cetol this week and it will be ready to enjoy by next weekend. The nice thing about a patio like this in the City of Calgary is that you DO NOT require a building permit as long as you are not more than 24″ above grade.

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