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Monday, April 17, 2017

DIY Pallet Bridge

Summary

We built a bridge using recycled building supplies. Our foot trail crosses a small creek which made it unusable parts of the year. A few pallets, beams, and precast pier blocks made an easy foot bridge and allows us to use the trail year-round while keeping our feet dry (although the kids seem to still end up in the mud ). We've even seen deer crossing on our bridge.
Be sure to watch the video at the end of this post for a project time lapse.

Supplies

  • Beams
  • Pier blocks
  • Fasteners
  • Pallets
  • 2x6 boards

Video



Detail

Step 1: Use a shovel to clear away soft topsoil and clear a flat area. Place a pier block on the cleared areas. For maximum bridge height, measure your beams and place the piers blocks near where the beams will end and estimate the width.
Step 2: Set the beams and attach to the pier block flange using nails. The beams should be shimmed with boards so that they are approximately level.
Step 3: Attach the pallets to the beams. We set our pallets so that the outside 2x4's are flush with the beams. We also left enough room on each end for a 2x6 step.
Step 4: Add a rail to the bridge by cutting two pallets in half and attaching the halves to the beam and deck pallets using nails. The nails have to be driven at an angle.
Step 5: Add a rail to the bridge by cutting two pallets in half and attaching the halves to the beam and deck pallets using nails. The nails have to be driven at an angle.
Step 6: Attach a 2x6 to the beams at each end, if necessary. We didn't plan ahead for this step and had to make it work in a less than ideal way. Ideally your step would bear on the beam instead of being attached to the bottom of the beam.
Note: You can see here that we used pallets that are more sturdy than the average pallet and have smaller gaps. Harm may not get her boots on the right feet but she's not going to fall between boards.