How to build a wishing well

Written by ehow contributor
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If you're looking to dress up your lawn or garden, you can do so with a wishing well. Wishing wells are attractive decorations that add personality to your yard. You can build your own wishing well to make it the style and size you wish. If you're feeling ambitious and have that perfect spot on the lawn picked out, then follow these steps to build a wishing well.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 14 1-inch by 4-inch boards
  • 2 1-inch by 4-inch boards with a 45-degree point on one end (uprights)
  • 4 1-inch by 4-inch boards, 16 inches in length with a 45-degree angle on one end (rafters)
  • 2 1-inch by 4-inch boards, 16 inches in length with 45-degree angles cut on both ends (crossties)
  • 6 1-inch by 6-inch boards (roof boards)
  • Table saw
  • Circular saw
  • Miter saw
  • Galvanized metal straps
  • Galvanized flathead nails
  • Drill
  • Galvanized bolt, nut and washers
  • Galvanized screws
  • Screw gun
  • Measuring tape
  • Hammer
  • Safety goggles or glasses
  • 1 1-inch by 1-inch board, 39 inches in length (spindle)
  • 2 1-inch by 4-inch board, 4 inches in length (spindle washers)
  • 1 1-inch by 4-inch board, 7 inches in length (handle arm)

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  1. 1

    Decide how large you want to build your wishing well. Cut all pieces of the wishing well to the above dimensions and to the desired length to make the size of the wishing well you want. Pine or cedar wood is best.

  2. 2

    Lay out the 14 1-inch by 4-inch boards and two uprights on the ground. Make sure the bottoms of all the boards are even and that there are 7 boards between the two uprights. Measure 1-1/2 inches from the top and bottom of each board and mark a line on both sides of the boards.

  3. 3

    Separate each board by 3/8 of an inch. Nail two metal straps on the marked lines with galvanized flathead nails. Start the strap halfway on one end board and leave it overhanging by 1-1/2 inches on the other end.

  4. 4

    Flip the entire structure over and roll it into a circle. Prop a 2-inch by 4-inch board inside to support the circle while nailing the loose ends of the metal straps into place.

  5. 5

    Join two of the rafters by screwing the 45-degree cuts together to form a triangle. Repeat for the other two boards. Screw a crosstie to each assembly to make an A. Place each one on top of the pointed ends of the longer boards of the wishing well. Drill a hole through the crosstie and board and bolt together.

  6. 6

    Screw roof boards to the rafters. Start with the lowest boards and let them overhang the rafters by 3/4 of an inch. Screw on remaining roof boards, overlapping one end over the board beneath it.

  1. 1

    Cut all pieces for the handle and spindle to the above dimensions. Drill a hole through the center of each handle washer and one on each end of the handle arm.

  2. 2

    Drill a hole in the middle of each upright. Slide the spindle through these holes. Screw a handle washer on one end.

  3. 3

    Saw off excess spindle to make the handle. Screw on the other handle washer and the handle arm. Slide the handle into the other hole in the handle arm and screw on.

Tips and warnings

  • You can use 2-inch by 4-inch boards to build a larger, sturdier wishing well.
  • The wishing well does not need a floor, but you can install one if desired. Measure the diameter of the circle, mark on a sheet of plywood and cut out with a jigsaw. Nail some nails halfway in around the inner boards about 1 inch from the bottom and drop the floor into place from the top of the wishing well body.
  • Always wear safety goggles or glasses when cutting wood.

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