Table of Contents
Stand the arbor posts
Did the holes for the arbor posts. For reasonably firm ground make the holes 350mm (14″) square by 600mm (24″) deep.
Refer to the arbor plan for dimensions.
Concrete the 100mm x 100mm (4″x 4″) posts in place.
At this stage the posts are more than the required length.
Wait until the next day for the concrete to harden a bit before cutting the tops of the posts to the required height.
For an excellent description of how to set out (position) the posts, mix and pour the concrete, stand the posts and trim the post tops, go to the Garden pergola construction article.
Mark the curves on the beams
Cut two beams 1000mm (40″) long out of 100mm x 100mm (4″x4″) stock.
Mark a 100mm (4″) radius arch at the ends of both beams.
This can be done by making a rotatable arm out of a strip of 120mm (5″) long wood.
Hammer a small nail into the arm 100mm (4″) up from the end until it protrudes out the other side.
Tap the protruding part of the nail into the beam 100mm (4″) up from the end and slightly in from the edge. (See the picture.) The arm should be able to rotate using the nail as the axis. Hold a pencil at the end of the rotatable arm to mark the curve. Do this to both ends of both beams.
Cut the curves on the beams
Cut the curves.
If you do not have a band saw, then you can use a miter saw to cut the curve by making a number of straight cuts at different angles around the curved line (see fig.1) and then completing the rounding process with sand paper and a sanding block.
If you do not have a miter saw, then the same result can be achieved with a handsaw – albeit a bit of extra work is required!
Mark and cut the arbor rafters
Cut six 1100mm (44″) rafters out of 100×50 (2″x4″) stock.
Make one end of each rafter curved and make a 45° angle cut at the other end.
Refer to the arbor plan for dimensions if necessary.
Mark and cut the curved ends in exactly the same way as the beam ends were cut. See fig.1above.
Make up the arbor top
- On an even surface nail the rafters together.
- Cut the horizontal members 1100m (44″) long with 45° angle cuts at both ends. fix the horizontal members in place.
- Measure, cut and fix the vertical members in place.
- Measure, cut and fix the diagonal members in place.
Lay out the complete arbor top frame including the beams on top of a couple of work stools.
Refer to the plans for placement.
Ensure that all parts are in their rightful positions and secure with nails.