Raised Garden Fencing #1: Milling The Wood & The First Frame

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by BlankMan posted 05-31-2010 04:58 PM 4505 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Raised Garden Fencing series Part 2: 8 Done, 4 To Go »

Well I’m still at it, woodworking that is. Although I find myself building more utilitarian type projects lately then anything else. Like this one. I have two 4’ x 20’ raised gardens and keeping the varmints out has always been a challenge. Short of using buckshot which is frowned upon within city limits. So years past I’ve been getting a 50’ roll of chicken wire and wrapping it around each raised garden. It works for the most part but once installed makes it a bit difficult to work in the garden and the chicken wire is not as easy and neat to install as one would think. It doesn’t conform to going around square corners well and a lot of stakes have to be used to keep it straight and flush at the bottom with the top of the raised garden.

So for the past few years I’ve been thinking about building some frames to go around each raised garden and putting the screen/fencing material on each frame. But building a frame that’s let’s say is 2’ x 10’ that is sturdy and can withstand the weather and not fall apart because I don’t want to be building new ones each year is a challenge.

Well I finally decided to give it a go. So I went and got some 2x Red Cedar and ripped it all to size. The rails and stiles of the frame are 1-1/2” x 1-1/2” and the X brace in the middle is 3/4” x 1-1/2”. I was kind of surprised at the quality of the Red Cedar I picked up being 2x stock, it was relatively straight. I jointed one edge of each board before ripping them and only had to make a few passes to flatten the edge.

All the joints are lap joints and I used Titebond III with a single 12×1-1/4” stainless steel screw in each joint. I’m hoping this glue will withstand Wisconsin weather. I’ve not had good luck in the past with things relying on glue in the outdoors regardless of which glue I’ve tried and I’ve tried them all.

One of the issues was to cut the dadoes for the lap joints for the X brace in the right places in the top and bottom rails so that when assembled the X brace boards would line up. Using a bit of trigonometry I calculated off of center where the dadoes should be then set up stops and cut two boards and prayed. I did a dry fit with those two top and bottom rails and low and behold it looked like I got things right.

The wood all ripped, almost enough to make the 8 2’ x 10’ frames, then have to make 4 2’ x 4’ frames on top of that.

All the lap joints and dadoes cut. A prime example where a RAS is the right tool for the job. Made the milling fast and easy once set up. Can’t think of a better nor faster way to do it. Anyone want to try putting lap joints on the ends of 10’ boards on a table saw? Or the 45 degree dadoes for the X brace on a TS? Not I. Maybe a router with a jig but I’d still be willing to bet the RAS would be faster and easier taking into account building the jig for the router.

And one frame glued up.

-- -Curt, Milwaukee, WI

7 comments so far

View Sailor's profile


544 posts in 4605 days

#1 posted 05-31-2010 06:02 PM

Cool, I want to see them done. I have had trouble with “varmits” only our’s was the dog….

-- Dothan, Alabama Check out my woodworking blog! Also my Youtube Channel's Facebook page

View a1Jim's profile


118309 posts in 4917 days

#2 posted 05-31-2010 06:08 PM

Looks like a pretty big job Curt . look forward to more progress.


View PurpLev's profile


8653 posts in 4989 days

#3 posted 05-31-2010 06:30 PM

sweet project, looking great :)

Welcome Back !

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2545 posts in 5298 days

#4 posted 05-31-2010 06:51 PM

”Just a bit of Trigonometry” he says…off the cuff….

Looks pretty cool….. I can do a half lap at the end of a board on my table saw relatively safely…I think


View BlankMan's profile


1491 posts in 4693 days

#5 posted 05-31-2010 07:11 PM

LOL @ the trig, yeah it always surprises me I still remember that stuff but I do use it quite often for stuff like this.

And yeah I’ve done half laps on the TS, but on relatively short stock, not on the end of a 10’ piece of wood, that seems to me to be a bit unwieldy. Especially with the typical miter gauge, even if the fence on it is a foot or two, a 10’ board hanging off it is just a lot to flop around.

Here’s my rough sketch, not to scale of course, was surprised I got it right the first time, Murphy must be on vacation.

-- -Curt, Milwaukee, WI

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2545 posts in 5298 days

#6 posted 06-01-2010 01:21 AM

Ya…I noticed AFTER I posted that there were half laps on the long pieces too…that would be almost impossible to do on a table saw….you are correct…RAS with a dado blade or a router with a jig would be the way I would have gone seeing how I don’t own a RAS!


View Roger Clark aka Rex's profile

Roger Clark aka Rex

6940 posts in 4775 days

#7 posted 06-01-2010 04:48 AM

That looks like a good project – nice lumber. I like the X layout and will look great when finished.
Last season I built 2 small raised planters in a hurry for my wife and drilled holes along each top and bent some heavy wire to make Hoops whose ends fitted into the holes. I attached some 3/4” plastic netting to the hoops to keeps the birds out and kitties. The hoop/net cover has worked well because you can just lift a part or all of the cover off in seconds, replacement is the same. We found the birds needed to be kept out – and it worked.
Good luck with your project.

-- Roger-R, Republic of Texas. "Always look on the Bright Side of Life" - An eyeball to eyeball confrontation with a blind person is as complete waste of Time.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics