How to Build a Rustic Bench

Written by bryan schatz
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How to Build a Rustic Bench
Use logs to form the supports of your bench and the benchtop. (log image by Atovot from

A rustic bench adds an aesthetic appeal that brings out the character of your garden as well as providing you with a place to sit and enjoy your yard. Build a rustic bench relatively easily with some basic tool knowledge and the proper materials. Decide on the perfect setting and length of your bench before starting with the building process. For green building, ask at the lumberyard for wood from a sustainable source.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 2 logs, approximately 24 to 30 inches long
  • 1 log, approximately 5 feet long (vary according to your dimensions)
  • Chain saw
  • Shovel
  • Drill
  • 2 coach screws
  • Water-sealant
  • Sander and sandpaper

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  1. 1

    Acquire all the necessary tools and lumber. If your lumber is a solid log, use the chain saw to cut two vertical sections to serve as the supports for your bench. Cut them longer than you intend the height of the bench so you can secure them into the ground.

  2. 2

    Make a V-cut into the top of each of your support logs using a chainsaw. Make sure the cuts are wide enough for the rounded side of your bench log to rest inside. The measurements do not have to be perfect.

  3. 3

    Cut the long log with a chainsaw parallel with the horizontal grain so that one side is flat and suitable for sitting, and the other side remains round, with the bark still on. Sand down the flat surface to smooth any splintered edges.

  4. 4

    Dig two holes approximately eight-inches deep for the support logs. Make sure the holes are far enough apart from each another that they support opposite sides of the bench. Place the logs in the holes and fill in the dirt. Stomp the dirt to compact it around the logs.

  5. 5

    Drill in a coach screw into each log at the bottom of the V-cut. Place mud on top of the screws. Pick up the bench log and position above the supports and coach screws. Remove it to observe where the mud left marks, and then drill holes in the bench log.

  6. 6

    Place your bench log onto the supports so that the coach screws sink into the drilled holes in the log. Coat the bench in a water-sealant and let dry.

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