Need thin wood slats for bench

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Forum topic by rut posted 10-01-2021 12:30 PM 301 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View rut's profile


74 posts in 3665 days

10-01-2021 12:30 PM

My wife has a 4’ bench she got online. The seat is made from 1.75” wide thin slats made out of what looks like compressed cardboard. A couple have broken. What would be a good option to replace these with. They are only about 1/2” or less thick. Would hate to have to by 4/4 wood and plane it down that much.

It will be painted so appearance isn’t important as long as it is smooth.


11 replies so far

View Tony1212's profile


617 posts in 3018 days

#1 posted 10-01-2021 12:52 PM

It’s difficult to say based on your description. Could you add pics?

Can you move to a 3/4” thick slat? Do the slats go from side to side (4ft long) or front to back? Will the bench mainly be used inside or outside? Do you have a budget?

Is plywood an option? Since you’re painting it, you could probably use 1/2 ply and it would be stronger than what you currently have.

-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs

View gdaveg's profile


393 posts in 485 days

#2 posted 10-01-2021 01:02 PM

You could buy thick poplar and rip it on a bandsaw & plane /sand strips to 0.5+/- inches thick. Or just mill down 0.75” boards.

-- Dave, Vancouver, WA & Tucson, AZ

View Bill_Steele's profile


779 posts in 3015 days

#3 posted 10-01-2021 02:57 PM

Maybe you could use 1/2” plywood or MDF?

View waho6o9's profile


9098 posts in 3860 days

#4 posted 10-01-2021 03:02 PM

Is it possible to notch the ends to 1/2” and keep the rest 4/4 stock?

View splintergroup's profile


6018 posts in 2505 days

#5 posted 10-01-2021 04:49 PM

+1 on the notching.

Unless you have the equipment (bandsaw) to efficiently split a thicker board in half, you’ll either waste a bunch of wood and eat some hours of life off the planer blades or have to buy wood that is already planed to 2/4.

To get the 2/4 target with the resawing (and surface cleanup), you’d probably need to begin with 5/4 or 6/4 stock.

View gdaveg's profile


393 posts in 485 days

#6 posted 10-01-2021 05:06 PM

waho6o9 has the best idea so far. I like it.

-- Dave, Vancouver, WA & Tucson, AZ

View bondogaposis's profile


6067 posts in 3634 days

#7 posted 10-01-2021 05:59 PM

Buy 8/4 stock and rip 1/2” pieces off the edge.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View SMP's profile


4953 posts in 1189 days

#8 posted 10-01-2021 06:25 PM

just buy 1/2” oak and rip to width. Most home improvement centers carry it now as “hobby boards.

View mtnwild's profile


4581 posts in 4810 days

#9 posted 10-01-2021 06:33 PM

Oak , Teak, of good quality would be good wood to use…Any good staight grain, with a good paint job should work..any thickness would work, notching the ends…Might think about adding cross supports under the slats to help keep them aligned…

-- mtnwild (Jack), It's not what you see, it's how you see it.

View Steve's profile


2645 posts in 1866 days

#10 posted 10-01-2021 06:43 PM

Could you get by with cedar fence boards from the big box store?

View Lazyman's profile


8214 posts in 2671 days

#11 posted 10-01-2021 09:19 PM

just buy 1/2” oak and rip to width. Most home improvement centers carry it now as “hobby boards.


+1, based upon the information that we have.

I am trying image what the seat looks like. Are the slats contoured? I think we really need a picture.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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