Ways to make construction trestles correctly: tips for beginners

Wooden construction trestles are useful in any task - for painting, plastering, laying bricks and many other operations. There are factory-assembled sawhorses, but they are quite expensive and do not always fit in size. Next, we will look at methods on how to make sawhorses with your own hands from scrap materials, using standard tools. We will separately consider how to choose the right size of sawhorses, what tools are needed, and provide step-by-step assembly instructions.

Appearance of standard wooden trestles Source nashprorab.com

What are construction sawhorses?

It is not clear why the construction stand was called a goat, perhaps because of its vague resemblance to a four-legged animal.

Note! In the word "goats" the stress is on the first syllable, not the second.

A trestle is a wooden stand on legs that can be used to carry out work on the upper parts of the wall and ceiling.

Goats are a multifunctional solution that is useful at any stage of construction. Scaffolding can be used in almost any process, especially when plastering or whitewashing a ceiling. Goats differ from each other, both in height and in the materials used. Scaffolds are also classified according to materials of manufacture:

  1. Wooden.
  2. Metal.
  3. Combined.

For obvious reasons, the first option will be easiest to make at home.

Features of folding trestles

Goats used in construction are devices that help people perform a number of tasks at a certain height (usually exceeding human height). For example, they will provide an opportunity to do painting work, hang wallpaper, continue bricklaying, and so on. Also, these devices are successfully used for cutting wood, they allow you to quickly organize a workbench or work table in the right place on the site and perform many other useful functions.

Wooden trestles for interior work

Traditionally, goats are a support on which a horizontal platform can be arranged, used as a table or a footrest - you can stand on it to climb higher. Also, in some cases, depending on the type of device, goats may have fences. These devices are:

  • stationary;
  • mobile.

Two more goat variants also stand out.

  • Solid ones are ordinary ones that are reliable, but they cannot be folded for storage. Their legs are connected by a wooden flooring that serves as a working platform. There are also jumpers that increase the reliability and stability of the product.
  • Foldable, easy to fold and carry/put away. They are less stable, but more functional. The wooden decking platform is easy to dismantle, and the legs can be folded and stored away.

Folding trestles
In this article we are talking specifically about folding trestles. Their main advantages:

  • high mobility;
  • small sizes;
  • ease of transportation even in a passenger car;
  • the ability to adjust the length of the working platform (the width is determined by the width of the support legs);
  • versatility (you can adapt them to anything);
  • the ability to be stored away - even in a small space they will not take up much space.

The main disadvantage of such trestles is their slightly more complex design than stationary ones, and also not such high stability. It is important to make sure that the sawhorses are properly positioned before getting on them before you begin!

Metal folding trestles

What you need to make your own scaffolding

First you need to decide on the length of the sawhorses. The most convenient option for work is the entire wall, because you can put all the necessary tools on it and even take an assistant. But if you want to use the scaffold more than once or twice, it may be better to choose shorter boards so that they can be moved from place to place.

Goats with adjustable dimensions Source waysi.ru

In addition, 2-3 small trestles can easily replace a desktop, that is, they can be used even after renovation or construction is completed. You just need to fasten them with a vice or any other similar equipment. Once the renovation is complete, the scaffold can easily be converted into a garden picnic table. If they are too large, then you will only have to disassemble them into components.


After creating the drawing, you need to decide how long the platform will be, and how many trestles will have to be made for it. Goats are always created from two or more - if the board being applied is long and can break in the middle.


Assembly diagram

To make the goats reliable and comfortable, you need to follow the following manufacturing scheme:

1. Place five boards 1500x100x30 mm and three boards 500x100x30 mm side by side on a flat surface. Place two short boards on edges so that the distance between their edges is 1500 mm. Place the third similar board in the middle, measuring the distance by eye. Lay two long boards on top of the short ones to create a rectangle. Align the central board, 500 mm long, using a tape measure so that it is exactly in the middle. Check the evenness of the structure, lay two more 1500 mm boards and connect them all with screws.2. Take two more boards 1500x100x30 mm. Turn the already assembled structure over with the short boards facing up. Lay the long boards on top to form a rectangular frame. Connect everything with self-tapping screws. The result is a flooring or work surface.3. Prepare four boards 1100x100x30 mm. Screw them to the work surface from the ends. The result is a structure similar to a table.4. We strengthen the structure with oblique crossbars made of boards 1700x100x30 mm and 700x100x30 mm and straight ones 1500x50x30 mm. They are screwed to the legs in such a way that the projections of oppositely located reinforcements intersect (in other words, they are in different diagonals).5. The last step is to screw in the steps, the function of which will be performed by 500x100x30 mm boards. For convenience, the lower steps are made with a projection, so two such boards are screwed to the legs of the trestle with blocks (bars 100x100x30 mm). The height of the steps can be chosen at your discretion.

So, the construction trestles are ready. Since work even at low heights is dangerous, the manufactured structure requires testing. To do this, you need to place a load on top that is larger than the one that will affect the structure during operation. Any heavy objects will do. If the goats have passed the test, then you can safely use them.

What are construction sawhorses made of?

In order to understand how to make construction trestles, we suggest that you familiarize yourself with their structure. The most practical solution at home is a folding version of trestles, since a non-folding one takes up a lot of space and cannot be used in the future. The main structural elements of the scaffold are the legs, fastened with a crossbar, and the upper ends of the frames.

First you need to decide on the dimensions of the structure. They start with the legs - the higher the ceilings, the higher the legs should be, but you also need to take into account the height of the builder - it will be inconvenient for a tall person to work right under the ceiling. The optimal height of the legs in most cases is equal to the height of the builder, minus 10-15 cm. The cross-section of the beam and the number of spacers are selected individually for each case.

Structure of wooden trestles Source yandex.net

See also: Catalog of companies that specialize in the design and installation of metal structures

The tops of the frames can usually be connected using door overhangs. To prevent the legs from moving apart under the weight of the builder on any floor surface, there must be a limiter. The limiter is fixed on the lower parts of the legs so that the structure is as stable as possible. For a limiter, you can take a strong bar or block.

Calculations and materials

You can buy sawhorses, both folding and regular, in almost any specialized store. But they most often have an aluminum base and are quite expensive. It is much easier and cheaper to make trestles for your dacha with your own hands. This is a relatively simple design that requires a minimum of carpentry skills from the manufacturer. In addition, homemade goats will not cost you a pretty penny, they can be easily adapted to the construction project you need, and they can also be easily used in the future if desired.

Goats from the store

You can assemble both metal and wooden trestles yourself. But we still recommend choosing the wooden version. Wood is much easier to work with and cheaper.

Advice! When choosing material for making a sawhorse, do not settle on low-quality wood with knots and cracks. Such sawhorses will be unreliable and may break at the most inopportune moment. The result is a high likelihood of serious injury.

One of the first stages of work is the design and creation of a drawing. We strongly recommend that you do not carry out all the work “by eye” - it is very easy to make a mistake due to which your structure will turn out to be crooked and unstable. Well, or it won't work at all. Therefore, sketch out a detailed drawing on a piece of paper indicating all dimensions, immediately write down how much fasteners you need and how much base material you need. The drawing will also clearly allow you to see what the finished structure will look like.

A simple drawing of a folding trestle

At the first stage, it is important to determine the height of the future goats. Usually it is chosen depending on the height of the person. Traditionally, the height varies between 75-95 cm.

Advice! For a person of average height (175-180 cm), a goat with a height of 80-85 cm is considered the best option.

Your favorite desktop or workbench will also help you determine the height. If you have one and you often work with it and feel comfortable, then you can measure its height and make a sawhorse with exactly the same parameters.

Universal sawhorses

The support legs of a goat must be assembled at a certain angle relative to each other. This will increase the stability of the structure. Let's take the standard version with angles of 65 and 80 degrees. Based on the height and angles of the legs, it is already possible to calculate the parameters of the remaining parts. Thus, it turns out that for one goat you will need:

  • legs 95 cm long - 4 pcs;
  • upper support crossbar 90 cm - 1 piece;
  • spacers - 2 on each side.

In addition, do not forget to buy fasteners. These are bolts, nuts, washers and screws. These elements will allow you to assemble a reliable structure. We do not recommend using nails - connections with them are less reliable and durable than with self-tapping screws. Nuts and bolts will be needed to connect the folding legs.

Attention! The calculations above are only for one goat! In order to install the working flooring, you will need two of them. This means we multiply the amount of all materials by two.

You can buy wood for the goats at your nearest hardware store, but you can also look at all sorts of scraps at your dacha. You most likely have them if you have done any construction work before. The board is suitable size 100x30 mm.

Do not use wood with obvious defects to create a goat.

Technology for assembling dismountable construction trestles

In order to assemble the structure, you can also use nails - this is the cheapest and most practical option. However, some elements will not hold well after such fixation, and the scaffolding will turn out to be unreliable. The best and fastest way to assemble trestles is with the help of special screws and a screwdriver.

Disposable sawhorses are most often fastened with nails Source ireland.apollo.com

Interesting kitchen utensils

You don't have to turn the boards into plates or even spoons - ultimately, it's still too much recycling and too difficult for many people. But it’s quite possible to limit yourself to an elegant tray or cutting board: in the end it turns out no worse. Among the breeds it is recommended to use:

  • linden;
  • birch;
  • aspen;
  • pear.

In some cases, juniper wood is also used. All this is used without fear, because high strength is definitely not required.

The design can be stenciled to make your life easier. An almost win-win option is to decorate it with Khokhloma or Palekh.

Upper platform of the trestles

There are only a few requirements for it - it must be as level as possible, stable and able to withstand the weight of a person standing on it. In addition, you need to take into account a lot of tools, buckets of paint, plaster, etc. The optimal load will be at least 150 kg. The width of the platform should not be wider than the doorways, and the height should not exceed 1.5 m, otherwise it will be inconvenient to deploy the trestles around the perimeter.

On average, it takes about 13-14 meters of edged boards to make a scaffold. As a result of such expenses, you will receive a reliable design that will be useful for any repair or as a substitute for a stepladder.

The upper part of the stage should not be too narrow or wide Source yandex.net

Necessary tool

Jigsaw Screwdriver Tape measure, pencil Bolts M10x100.
Wrench 17 For furniture bolts M10x100 I used an M10 nut with a nylon sealing insert and three washers.

You will also need some tie-down tape to keep the sawhorses from moving apart. I used welded chain.

When cutting wood using a two-handed saw, a stable support for the second hand is required. This should be taken care of in advance when assembling the device.

It is possible to make a stop from wood that can be installed in any desired place.

Using our recommendations on how to make a sawhorse, you will create a stable structure, and cutting firewood on it will be a pleasure. You can also view ready-made sketches, photo and video materials on the Internet.

Equally important is the correct use of sawhorses. You should not load too massive and heavy logs on it.

The folding design of the sawhorses is suitable for cutting firewood using a hand saw or chainsaw. This device is simply indispensable in the homestead for collecting firewood and stove logs to light the stove, barbecue or fireplace in the house.

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Post published: 29.10

Types of metal scaffolding:

  • Pin,
  • Khomutovy,
  • Frame,
  • Wedge (have one of the most complex connections, in the form of disks welded to straight posts and pipes. The lock is located on the disk, the wedge fits into the hole. The advantage of such scaffolding is that they are very easy to assemble and disassemble, and move to another place.)

Preparation of firewood for the winter is familiar to almost every rural resident and land owner. And of course, for convenient sawing of firewood you need a special tool called a sawhorse.

Surely many have seen photos of sawhorses for firewood in magazines or on the Internet. This is not a complicated device that you can build with your own hands, and besides, it should certainly be in the household.

With their help, it is convenient to process wood, wooden blocks or metal profiles.

Solving the question of what to make a goat out of at the dacha is quite easy. Indeed, to make this simple traditional design, it is enough to use the following materials:

  • a wooden beam of a regular shape. Assembling a device from this material is simple, but it is susceptible to high humidity.
  • wooden posts of medium diameter, which are used to build fences. This method is financially economical, but do not count on its reliability.
  • metal strips that will ensure the reliability of the structure and will serve for many years.
  • various items sent for scrap.

Although the sawmill for sawing wood has a simple design, it is essentially a machine. Therefore, in the process of its manufacture it is necessary to take into account some nuances:

it is necessary to have a plan (drawing) of the future structure with step-by-step instructions and calculation of the dimensions of all parts. It is important to correctly calculate the inclination of the supporting elements for ease of use.

When assembling, the main thing to consider is the size of the equipment, which depends on:

  • human height,
  • parameters of the future device,
  • strength and size of the wood requiring processing.

Depending on this, the length of working time spent will be determined.

We invite you to familiarize yourself with the process of insulating a wooden house with your own hands, from the outside

A device with a height of 90-110 cm is considered a win-win option. As a result, the person working behind it will not have to lean forward too much, and the hands will not get too tired due to the horizontal position.

There will be minimal stress on the spine, and the work process will become much easier.

Manufacturing process

Prepare the following items:

  1. The legs are about a meter long.
  2. Boards up to 70 cm wide for the base.
  3. Three crossbars of 0.7, 0.77 and 0.8 meters.

Check that the legs are strictly the same width, length and thickness. If necessary, cut down unnecessary trees. The top ends that will hold the crossbars should be aligned at a 90 degree angle. The angles of the spacers will be different - one is 80 degrees, and the opposite is 90.

Place the two legs together so that they form a 90-degree angle and cut off any unnecessary wood. Use the same principle to make a second pair of legs. Where they touch, drill a hole for the rotation bolt and insert it so they can close and open like scissors.

Between the wide and narrow places of the finished legs, spacers are inserted and fixed. The lower ones are fastened with a tightening belt. Now one side is completely ready - just assemble the second and attach a platform on top for the builder to work on. Portable trestles are ready in 2 hours of working time - and can be used indefinitely.

Jumpers are needed not only for stability - they are also steps to the trestles, which will make life easier for the builder Source yandex.net

Lower tension strap

The support bar prevents the legs from folding inward. However, a home craftsman can accidentally move them outward, causing the structure to “corrode” and lose its rigidity. To do this, a belt tie is used to secure the opposite lower struts. It is installed using the following technology:

  • trestles fold out
  • the middle of the lower strut is marked
  • a through hole is drilled with a 10 mm drill (for an M10 bolt)
  • a hole is punched 40 cm from the belt carabiner into which the bolt is inserted

After that, it is enough to secure the bolt with the belt in one spacer with a nut, tighten the belt around the opposite spacer, and cut off the excess length. The same strap secures the support bar to the legs during transportation or storage when folded.

Thus, universal folding trestles can be made on your own with a minimum set of tools within a couple of hours. All parts are ready-made templates, which facilitates the further assembly of the required number of these transformable devices.

Briefly about the main thing

The main advantage of homemade trestles is their low cost and the ability to assemble a structure of exactly the height that the builder needs. If desired, the trestles can be modified at any time - for example, reducing the height, slightly filing the legs, or even adding a second tier. To reduce the cost, instead of wood, in some cases you can use plastic or remnants from profile pipes. To work, you will need a beam of the required size, a screwdriver and self-tapping screws, a jigsaw or saw. The work takes 2-3 hours.

Work schedule

The beam for making the base needs to be marked for 12 cuts - 6 pieces on each side, their depth should be about 2.5 cm, they will act as grooves for the horns with legs.

Goat design diagram

After this, the cuts are knocked out using a chisel, sawn bars are inserted into the formed grooves, and everything is fixed at this point using self-tapping screws.

On bars with an inch cross-section, places for attaching amplifiers are marked; they will prevent the legs from diverging. Using a hacksaw, excess sections are sawed off, and the foreman selects the length of the legs. When the wood saws are ready, they need to be treated with stain and dried, after which the device is ready for use.

Standard goats are quite large in size and weight, which does not always allow them to be transported. This is why many people prefer to buy or build a mobile unit that can be easily transported.

But you should immediately take into account that the manufacture of such a design will take more time. All they need is:

  • 4 wooden blocks of medium diameter;
  • metal pipe 1.5 meters long;
  • strong rope or cable;
  • durable wood drill bit.

The assembly of the structure always begins with the beams. On them you need to mark the location of the cut, where the legs will then be installed. After drilling the planks, the base is inserted into them, then the legs are installed in place. Finally, a limiter is made for the racks to prevent deformation of the legs.

Design for hand sawing

For many centuries, goats remained virtually unchanged.
The craftsmen only adjusted the width and height of the product to their own height and the size of the logs. Previously, wood was cut in pairs using a two-handed saw. The cutting process when working together was controlled by the free hand. On both sides, workers held the ends of the log, guiding it or pressing it for more convenient work. When cutting large trunks, they were sawed a little deeper than the middle and turned to the other side. With such a cut, the cut could have an uneven edge, which would burden the splitting.

Traditional sawhorses for firewood were made from cross-shaped posts. They were placed at a distance equal to the double firebox of the stove for which the wood was cut.

Such products can still be found in everyday life, but they have still undergone some changes. Another cross was added to them, which allows you to clamp firewood. These sawhorses can be used with one-handed saws.

You can also find metal sawhorses on the modern market. They are equipped with teeth for strong fixation of wood. Metal devices have screw stops that also make cutting easier by holding the log in the sawhorses.

It is much easier to prepare fuel on such goats. If you store firewood yourself, then such a device is indispensable in your household.

Chain saw sawhorses

If you need to store a large amount of fuel, it is best to work with an electric or gasoline saw. Such tools not only make it easier, but also speed up the work significantly. In addition, they reduce physical and time costs.

It will not be possible to cut firewood with a chain saw on a regular, traditional sawhorse, since the tool may break if the bar gets stuck in the cut. If you cut off pieces of logs that extend beyond the crosspieces of the structure, the cut will be long and irrational. That is why special sawhorses for sawing firewood with a chainsaw have been developed for harvesting with electric tools. The simplest design for cutting firewood with a chain saw consists of a heavy base and stable legs. The tree trunk is cut down where it extends beyond the boundaries of the goat. You can hold the log in this setup with your foot.

The speed of work on this design is not very high, but it is quite suitable for cutting medium batches.

Chain saw stand

If you are harvesting thin logs, it is better to build a log rack. The design consists of 4 legs or pillars welded or attached to the base. You can use a welded frame or a heavy metal plate for it. The device is convenient only for working with small trunks; you cannot cut large logs with it. The size of the trestle is selected based on the size of the stove and the length of the supplied logs. The product can be made in almost any size.

Note! To facilitate the operation of frame trestles, fasten the racks not by welding, but by bolting. This will allow you to quickly disassemble the structure to remove firewood.

The device has the only drawback - the armful of logs in it cannot be sawed to the end, otherwise the saw will hit the ground. To eliminate this problem, you can install transverse supports in which a gap is formed between the woodpile and the trestle stand. However, this type of device cannot be quickly disassembled, which reduces its functionality.

This is interesting: Design of a bathhouse inside: our view on the issue

Nothing extra: mobile trash can

Forgive me for such a natural comparison, but do you know why the horses that drove chaises around the city had a bag tied under their tails?
Yes, precisely for this reason, to keep the pavement clean. So my working goat got such a device. I cut the rim off the paint bucket and cut off the lid. You can attach a garbage bag between the rim and the lid. And the rim itself was fixed with a movable holder. I hope you liked my construction beast. I will be glad if my experience helps someone with repairs

Thank you, Olga! A charming master class from a real craftswoman! It's nice to look at your work. We don't even have anything to add. The only thing you can do is to suggest complicating the task, as in this short video on creating a multifunctional carpentry table:

Watch this video on YouTube

We are waiting for your impressions and comments, as well as new materials in the section “This is not a woman’s business!”

PHOTO: Olga Yarovaya

Cut out the details

1. From pine or spruce boards with a cross-section of 19×150 mm, cut out legs A with an allowance of 13 mm in length (see “List of Materials”, Fig. 1 and 2) and crossbars B to the final length. File the parts to the required width, taking care to remove knots and other defects from the edges. At the lower ends of all legs A, make bevels at an angle of 15°. Trim the other end of each leg to its final length. (The bevel on the top end of the leg will be formed after assembly.)

2. Cut out halves of shelf C from a board with a cross-section of 19x200 mm. Using a Forstner drill, drill two holes with a diameter of 38 mm in each of the halves (Fig. 3). Draw lines tangent to the holes and use a jigsaw to cut out cutouts that serve as handles. Smoothly sand or file the edges of the cutouts and mill rounding edges with a radius of 6 mm.

3. Saw a 19x150mm board in half lengthwise and glue the two pieces face to face to create a blank for top bar D. Once the glue has dried, saw the blank to the final width and length.

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