In this post, I will show you how to make weatherboards from pallet wood.
Weatherboards made from pallet wood are a useful way to recycle old pallets. I have used these for garden sheds and playhouses for the grand kids.
You can find pallets all over the place for free. Pallets vary in size,they are usually 1165mm by 1165mm or 46″ x 46″. But, larger and smaller pallets can be found.
A pallet may be heat or chemically treated, and you can figure this out by the ISPM-15 (International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures No. 15) code you may find on a pallet. An example of the ISPM-15 code is below.
The XX is the country code. YY shows the type of treament, heat treatment is HT, MB is for Methyl Bromide treatment and should not be used. 000 is the code number for the producer of the pallet.
However, a pallet is not treated if it does not have a ISPM-15 code.
Pallets may be hardwood or softwood. I prefer softwood pallet wood to make weatherboards.
How to demolish a pallet
There are several ways to pull a pallet apart. I use a crow bar and hammer to get the pallet deck boards off the stringers as I want to get the longest lengths possible. However many people are happy to saw the stringers off each side and then pry the deck boards off the center stringer.
A tip – to get more deck boards off without damage, pull the pallet apart when it is soaking wet. The pallet wood is more pliable and comes apart much easier.
Once I have the pallet pulled apart, I remove all the nails so that they don’t damage my tools.
The wood you get from pallets is usually 100mm by 20mm or 4″ x 1″ for the deck boards and 100mm by 40mm 4″ x 1 1/2″ stingers. I use the deck boards for many different projects, however in this post I will show you how to make weatherboards from pallet wood.
Cutting the deck boards
I use a table saw to cut the deck boards into weatherboards. My weatherboards are a chamfer profile, which is to say they look like this.
The first cut is the diagonal face. Set the saw blade angle to 5 degrees to 10 degrees depending on the thickness of the board. Use a smaller angle on thin boards. The saw fence should be set to 5mm – 7mm. Cut the face on your boards, then I cut the rebate on the bottom of the board.
The rebate cut takes a bit of hit and miss to get right. I usually start with the saw fence about 10mm from the saw blade, and the saw blade height about 10mm and 0 degree angle. This should give you a neat step out that will take the top of another weatherboard.
If the saw blade doesn’t cut through the deck board on the diagonal cut you need to increase the angle of the face cut.
What can you do with the weatherboards
These photos are an example of the pallet wood weatherboards I have made and used to construct a cubby house. You can use the weatherboards for any small shed. Other uses of the pallet wood weatherboards could be as planters and wooden chests.
Although making pallet wood weatherboards is time consuming, you can save lots by using recycled pallet wood and your even helping the environment by reducing the number of pallets going into landfill.