A pair of sawbucks or sawhorses is undoubtedly one of the most common and useful tools for every carpenter a construction project or daily tasks with woods. No matter if you are a beginner or professional, it is simple to build your own kit with some simple tools and materials. In this guide, we’ll show you simple steps on how to make a sawhorse for cutting logs.
What you will need:
- Wooden boards
- A circular saw
- A tape measure
- A hammer
- An angle square
Prepare a few boards with a suitable size, material, and shape for this task. It is recommended to use 2×6 yellow pine units which are split or ripped down to make the final product much lighter in weight. If you can’t find this size, 2×4 spruce, white pine, or lodgepole without ripping might also work. If you plan to leave your sawhorse outdoors all year round, then it is better to purchase lumbers which is specially treated to prevent insects and rot.
Set up a working surface or table to measure and cut on the lumber. As you are making a sawhorse, it would be assumed that you haven’t still had an available set. But if you do, then feel free to use it.
If you use 2×6 boards which must support a massive weight or don’t come with big knows, rip them. This will lower the required number of units by and total weight by half. Skip this step if you use full-sized 2×4 boards.
Determine the length of its legs to make sure it provides a comfortable height for working. For example, if you are around 1.8 meters in height, then the recommended length might range from 0.85 to 0.90 meters. For shorter workers, just adjust the measurement accordingly. It is advisable to build a little bit high sawhorse so that you could trim the legs to fit your height when the unit is complete.
When you are cutting the first leg to length, also cut a bevel. To ensure a suitable spread on the legs of the sawhorse, an angle of around 30 degrees from the edge of the board or around 60 degrees from its square line would work well. In most cases, the total of those angles should be 90 degrees.
Also, keep in mind that you are cutting a bevel square to the board’s narrow edge. Thus, it is necessary to mark both the bottom and top, then re-cut through from its bottom to get through the board. Make sure these cuts are straight and flat so that they would fit tightly against the top board.
Cut the top or back board of the sawhorse. Both ends of the unit should be sawed square, approximately 107 to 122 centimetres in length. Make a small 1-inch mark from each end, then draw a square line with a pencil to figure out where to put the legs at both sides.
Place the back board on a smooth floor or working table. Use the square mark created previously to position the first leg, then nail it to make sure the bevel is tightly set against the top board’s edge. You should bunt the point of the nails to reduce the likelihood that the wood would split when your sawhorse is nailed. Also, keep in mind to use an 8d nail to provide adequate holding power.
Nail two legs on a side of your top board and flip over the assembly. Nail the other legs in the opposite side. Now, you could use bigger nails because if the point projects through, it might go in the back of the first leg pair and enhance this joint’s strength.
Stand the partially assembled sawhorse upright, then measure down from the top board’s bottom around 20 centimetres. After that, use a short board and fit it between these legs by scribing it to be a horizontal spreader. The angle on these braces needs to be roughly 180 degrees in total, with 65 degrees for the bottom and 115 degrees for the top. By doing this, you would create a better and more accurate fit.
Nail all of the braces in position with 2 12d nails in four ends. Start from the leg through the brace’s end-grain. Make sure to do this step carefully so that these braces would position the legs of your sawhorse properly and keep it stand straight and flat on a level floor. An out-of-position brace would result in an unsteady and wobble unit. A useful tip is to hold the sawhorse straight and upright while nailing for simpler operation.
Flip over the sawhorse on the top board, then have somebody hold it or prop it in position. Cut another piece around 46 centimetres in length, with a 45-degree angle on one side as the diagonal brace. Grip the angled side against its spreader brace, then scribe the other side where the top board intersects it and cut out this mark. Cut three more with the same construction.
Nail all of these braces in position. The end should cut on a 45-degree angle which is nailed through the spreader brace to the end grain and butted to the brace. This should be nailed through the grain to the top board’s bottom, so choose nails which are large enough to have a good bite. In most case, 12d units might work well. And do not forget to blunt the sides to keep the boards from splitting.
Check the sawhorse to make sure all legs come with the same length and evenly fit the ground. If not, you need to trim long legs so that the top board is parallel with the ground. Now, let’s take a look at your new sawhorse.