Monday, May 13, 2013

Pallet Garden Stakes

Here's a great simple project for some pallet wood - garden stakes to label your plants.  This project was actually suggested on the comments under the pallet headboard, and we decided to make them for my mother-in-law as a Mother's Day present. 

Start off by removing the planks from a pallet.  I didn't worry about ripping the sides down at all, but I did buzz them through the planer to clean up the faces enough to paint the names of the vegetables on. 

Use a miter saw to square up the ends of the planks and then set up a stop block to trim them down to a consistent length. This will help the taper later.
Slide the stop block a bit closer, and set your miter saw to the steepest angle you can come up with.  Slice off the end, making sure that the saw slices past the center of the board.

Flip it around and cut on the other side to make a sharpened point on the end of the stake.  

This point is sharp enough to drive into the ground, but the angle is too acute to go in very easily.  Your next step is to lengthen the taper so that as you drive in the stake, the point does the actual digging while the sides just push a little dirt out of the way. 

Head over to the table saw.  I adapted my straight-line rip jig to cut a taper on end by nailing a guide strip to hold the pallet board at the right angle. There are a few updates to this board that I really want to make, so I'll add another post on it to my to-do list ...but for now, a couple of nails and a scrap piece will set up the angle just fine. 

Set the taper so that the board will end up with a sharp point (created by the miter saw) that blends into a long angle.  

Flip it about and cut the same angle on the other side

That's it for the sawdust-producing part of this project!  Samantha took it over to paint on the names of vegetables likely to appear in Mimi's garden. 

We got eight stakes out of this project!

Tool List:
Miter Saw
Planer (optional)
Table Saw

Materials List:
One pallet

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