Wooden boxes

Build your own wooden boxes

Wooden boxes are practical for storage and very beautiful but also very expensive. In Denmark you will find several kinds of boxes on the market but they are often sold in designer shops, costing a fortune, and looking so nice you don’t have the heart to use them for vegetables, fruit and soil. The solution: Build your own wooden boxes.

Wooden boxes
Homemade wooden boxes with different heights.

My husband recently made some boxes out of old wood pallets. We got the pallets last time we bought split firewood and the pallets were supposed to end their days in our wood stove. Fortunately my husband were able to reuse the pallets when I expressed the need for wooden boxes. I needed boxes, I could stack to any height, and at the same time boxes with lots of air circulation. The air circulation helps prevent rot and wooden boxes are perfect for storing apples. You would think the boxes take a lot of time to make but my husband made eight in one afternoon. When you get your head around the first one, the rest are easy to make.

Some pallets are made of very sturdy wood. Impossible to use for wooden boxes simply because they get too heavy. Look for pallets where the boards are no thicker than 8-10 mm.

Homemade wooden boxes
Wooden boxes are perfect for storing apples. Store the apples in a frost-free place, put the apples in one layer and make sure they don’t touch.

My boxes are the same size but with different heights but you can make any size you want. Just keep the weight in mind. When the boards are sawed to the right size, try lifting them all before assembling the box. This will help you realize how heavy the finished box is. Remember, the weight of the box is the least of it. Imagine a box filled with apples.

How to build wooden boxes

In principle the box is pretty simple. The height is set by the number of boards used. Two or three boards in height should be more than enough.

The width is determined by the number of boards used for the bottom. The length is decided by you.

Start by deciding how many boards you want in the bottom – I used four. Cut the boards in the right length. Place spacers between the boards making sure you keep the same distance between the boards. Use any distance you like – I used 10 mm. Measure the width of all four boards (B) plus spacers (S). Width = (4xB) + (3xS)

The width determines the width of end boards and the two boards used beneath the bottom. (The two boards beneath helps you stack the boxes).
If your height is two boards, you need six boards the same width.

Wooden boxes, homemade
The two bottom boards help you stack the boxes.

Nail the four bottom boards to the two underneath. We used a nail gun but you can use ordinary nails.

Now it is time to stabilize the end boards with two small pieces of board. The height of the small boards = (2xB) + (1xS) – the thickness of one board.
Cut four pieces the same size and assemble two end boards with two small boards. Repeat. Nail the end boards to the bottom board with long nails. It is important the nails go horizontal and not vertical, so you need to nail the end boards from the side, not the bottom. If you do the latter, you will risk the bottom dropping out if you load the box too heavy.

The Final thing is to measure the length, saw four boards and nail them on the sides. For extra strength use both nails and glue.

DIY wooden boxes
Small boards in the corners help stabilize the box.

One Response to Build your own wooden boxes

  1. Betina Hofmann June 5, 2015 at 07:45 #

    Dear Karin

    Beautiful design – I love it..
    Your post on making wood boxes I will try that in the weekend.

    I think the boxes would be nice and cool to show all the new dog toys I have…Tanks for the tip..
    Looking forward to you next post../Betina

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