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Cabin Fever

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Cabin Fever

Post  Zmoore on 1/28/2016, 10:05 am

Being cooped up from the snow got me bored, so I went out in the garage last night and worked on one of my "winter projects".  Making new beds and some "top hats" to try with carrots this year,
"Top Hats" put together, ain't they cute Smile


Two more 4x4 boxes.  I'll paint later.


So, the snow worked out for me.  Can't play in my compost piles, so play with making boxes Smile

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts on 1/28/2016, 12:07 pm

Very cool!  And very "constructive" use of your winter gardening break  Laughing

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  mschaef on 1/28/2016, 12:17 pm

Looks great and very productive of you to start making them now. I always seem to wait til last minute with making my boxes.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  sanderson on 1/28/2016, 12:19 pm

+1

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  littlesapphire on 1/28/2016, 12:59 pm

Great idea!  Gardening projects for the winter are what keep me going too.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  trolleydriver on 1/28/2016, 3:29 pm

Great idea. I've been getting the urge recently to make two new boxes in anticipation of putting them out into the garden in the Spring.  Maybe I'll just make a few top hats to start with. Problem is that it's a bit on the cold side for working in the garage at this time of the year.

Question: Do I need top hats or extra box height for tomatoes in order to provide additional depth for the roots? If so I'm thinking of just making the last row (north side) of my 4'x'4 boxes double height for the toms. Maybe a four foot long removable top hat that spans the last row of box would provide the most flexibility. BTW I don't mean to hijack this thread.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  CapeCoddess on 1/28/2016, 3:43 pm

Well done, Zmoore!  Yes, those li'l boxes are cunnin'.  

TD, I grew cherry toms in 5" of MM last year and they went crazy.  Up to 15' long on top!  Wove them in and out of my 5' trellis 3 times!  Actually that box did the best of any of them along with the garlic box, which was also a bit low.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  littlesapphire on 1/28/2016, 4:49 pm

@CapeCoddess wrote:Well done, Zmoore!  Yes, those li'l boxes are cunnin'.  

TD, I grew cherry toms in 5" of MM last year and they went crazy.  Up to 15' long on top!  Wove them in and out of my 5' trellis 3 times!  Actually that box did the best of any of them along with the garlic box, which was also a bit low.

CC
Yep, I agree with CC about tomatoes!  They're one of the veggies that seem to do the best in my 6" SFGs Smile  Just make sure to mulch well so they don't dry out as quickly.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  trolleydriver on 1/28/2016, 5:22 pm

Good to know on the depth for the toms. Now I better turn this thread back to its owner. Let's see what other people are building in preparation for a new season.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  Scorpio Rising on 1/28/2016, 6:15 pm

Zmoore, do you use 4' long wood to make the 4x4? And screws? Do you drill a pilot hole? I am doing this on my own with my new Christmas B&D driver/cordless drill.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  trolleydriver on 1/28/2016, 11:37 pm

SR ... When I built my 4x4 boxes last year I used 4 foot long pieces of wood, overallaping them at the corners the same way Zmoore show in his photo. I used deck screws to hold them together and I did not drill pilot holes. If you are using regular screws them pilot holes will be better.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  Scorpio Rising on 1/29/2016, 6:51 pm

@trolleydriver wrote:SR ... When I built my 4x4 boxes last year I used 4 foot long pieces of wood, overallaping them at the corners the same way Zmoore show in his photo. I used deck screws to hold them together and I did not drill pilot holes. If you are using regular screws them pilot holes will be better.

OK, thanks for the info, TD! Deck screws, will need to see what those are. 1 inch thick on the wood?

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  trolleydriver on 1/29/2016, 7:05 pm

SR ... I used 2"x8" lumber which gave me a little more depth for the MM than what Mel suggests. As well, the 2" (it's actually less than that) thickness gives plenty of stability along the length of the boards without any additional staking. It also provides good thickness for the screws to hold in the end grain without splitting the wood. I may use one inch lumber for my top hats since they are small.

This is what the deck screws look like.

http://www.homedepot.com/s/deck%2520screws?NCNI-5

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  Scorpio Rising on 1/29/2016, 10:09 pm

Sooooo, the deck screws have less of the screwy part, more of a nail/screw hybrid? Hence, no pilot needed? I like it!

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  sanderson on 1/30/2016, 12:59 pm

@trolleydriver wrote: I used 2"x8" lumber which gave me a little more depth for the MM than what Mel suggests. 
For anyone in a hot summer/drought area, I would recommend 2" x 8" (7 1/2" actual depth) so there is plenty of room to top with mulch.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  plantoid on 1/30/2016, 6:57 pm

@Scorpio Rising wrote:Sooooo, the deck screws have less of the screwy part, more of a nail/screw hybrid?  Hence, no pilot needed?  I like it!
 They also tend to grab in the end grain much better than a nail ever would even when it's rusty.

 IF  you must use nails try skew nailing four in a straight row , done so that the nail heads a bit nearer together than the points will be when hammered home , this helps keep the wood clamped up

If you happen to have some of the expanding when damp before it sets " Gorilla glue "  aka " GG " and dampen the none grain surface  then smear  bit of " GG " on the grain end and then screw up the corner  with two screws or skew nail it . They will usually rot away before it comes apart as it is good for outside gluing come rain or shine ,  ( I don't know about freezing at minus 21 o C or so  cold though )

 Also its worth putting the wood so that all the end  grains of all the timbers have the smaller  radial ring marks  facing inwards to the box middle ,  this helps to stop them warping out away from the box frame if the wood get too dry /wet or weathered .

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  Scorpio Rising on 1/31/2016, 10:19 am

I am gonna try those deck screws.  So, the 3 inch long ones, right?

And plantoid, I am sure since I am a total noob in working with wood, my efforts will end up naturally skewed withou me trying! Lol


Last edited by Scorpio Rising on 1/31/2016, 10:35 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Forgot something...)

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  trolleydriver on 1/31/2016, 4:32 pm

SR ... if you are using 2" (1-1/2") boards then 3 inch screws should be OK. Thinner boards would require smaller screws.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  Scorpio Rising on 1/31/2016, 5:26 pm

TD, 1x8" vs 2x8"...opinion? Is one size or the other easier to handle? I am sure my current boxes are not from 1 1/2" thick planks.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  trolleydriver on 1/31/2016, 6:29 pm

SR, personally I would use 2x8. I think 2x8 will last longer and will be stronger along the entire length of the side of the box. As well it will be easier to get the corner screws to go into the end grain without splitting the wood.  However, if you already have 1x8 then you could try that but you may need some kind of wood blocking inside the corners to make the joint stronger. Since I have never used 1x8 lumber you are getting a very biased opinion from me.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  Scorpio Rising on 1/31/2016, 8:37 pm

Nope, I don't have any lumber at all. However, I get what you are saying. I will go with the 2x8s and the 3" deck screws for my maiden box makin' voyage! I want to build a 4x4 and a 1/2 square in a triangle shape for my strawberry bed. It will close up a hard to mow spot in my backyard.

Thank you for the advice! Very Happy

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  CitizenKate on 1/31/2016, 10:46 pm

I totally agree with TD.  A thicker board is not at all difficult to handle, and will hold up much better.  When I make boxes, I just go to Home Depot, pick out some 8-foot boards, and have someone there cut them exactly in half for me - they do that for free.  (I don't know how many places do that, but that's why I buy my box boards at HD.)  Then all I have to do is bring them home, drill holes in the ends and screw them together.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  jimmy cee on 1/31/2016, 10:53 pm

@Scorpio Rising wrote:Zmoore, do you use 4' long wood to make the 4x4?  And screws?  Do you drill a pilot hole?   I am doing this on my own with my new Christmas B&D driver/cordless drill.  
Yes if you can, a pilot hole will keep screws and nails from splitting wood edges.
If using nails, turn the nail over and flatten out the point slightly, this also helps prevent splitting.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  yolos on 1/31/2016, 11:53 pm

@trolleydriver wrote:SR, personally I would use 2x8. I think 2x8 will last longer and will be stronger along the entire length of the side of the box. As well it will be easier to get the corner screws to go into the end grain without splitting the wood.  However, if you already have 1x8 then you could try that but you may need some kind of wood blocking inside the corners to make the joint stronger. Since I have never used 1x8 lumber you are getting a very biased opinion from me.
I agree totally.

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Re: Cabin Fever

Post  AtlantaMarie on 2/1/2016, 9:32 am

Me too!

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Re: Cabin Fever

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