Build a Pergola – Simple Cedar Plan Idea

Adding the rest of the Rafters

Animation to build a pergola step-by-step
Rest of rafters added now that braces are done

Now the temporary bracing can be removed. And the rest of the fill-in rafters are toe screwed to the beams.

Build a Pergola – the Louvers

Next the 2×4 louvers are made. They’re made in the same way as the beams and rafters. They are marked, ganged together with clamps, and notched with a circular saw. They are set in place and screwed to the rafters.

Animation to build a pergola step-by-step
The louvers finish the pergola

If you want more shade you can add more louvers to the pergola. If you’ve always wanted to build a pergola, then this simple pergola design might be the one for you.

Cedar pergola in a backyard or patio
The Western Red Cedar Pergola in the side yard of this house

And this simple pergola is done.
What I like about this pergola is it’s simplicity and how the rafters are notched into the beams, and the louvers into the rafters. I think taking the extra time to do that is well worth it. I also like the chamfered edges – I think that’s also worth the extra effort.
I finished the pergola with a semi-transparent stain. I stained each part prior to assembly. Not always required but it can make things easier to roll on finish with boards laying over a sawhorse instead of overhead.
And thanks to everyone who has supported our channel through Patreon. It’s very much appreciated.

I have a full set of plans available for download.
If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below. Thanks for reading

See also:  Shed Style Garden Pavilion

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