Getting Started with the Wood Shed Build
The 6×6 and 4×4 post saddles attach to the concrete footings with a nut and washer on a galvanized anchor bolt I embedded in the concrete. These particular saddles are slightly adjustable to allow you to square up your structure if the anchor bolts are a bit off.
After the posts are attached, you can tighten the nut. I had to grind down an old wrench so it would fit in the narrow slot.
I selected the posts and beams and other parts and hauled the lumber up to the side of the house. I’ll start with the rear posts by cutting them to length. I mark a line around the post with my square, cut half way through on the miter saw, rotate the post, then finish the cut.
I lay out the slot at the bottom to receive the lower 4×5 girts. I cut these slots with my circular saw set at a depth of 2″ and use a large speed square to guide the blade.
I break off these thin segments with a hammer and clean up with a sharp chisel. I then lay out the half lap at the top of the post to receive the upper girt and cut it in the same manner as the lower groove.
“Break” the corners
I use a power plane to chamfer the edges of the posts and use my angle grinder with a sanding disc to chamfer all the tighter corners. I do this to all parts of this structure.
Next I cut the taller front posts to length and lay out the pockets for the girts and front cross members. These pockets are two inches deep and run three inches into the post on opposing sides.
I’ll make one front cross brace as a test-fit piece before I cut all the pockets in the front posts. I’ll cut a 4×5 slightly longer than needed. Then layout the lap and cut it with my circular saw. Then clean it up with a chisel.
There’s a number of ways to cut these 2″x3″ pockets in the front posts. You can drill out most of the wood and finish it off with a chisel in the very traditional way. For this project, and my limited time to get it done and filled with firewood before winter, I thought I’d try my oscillating multi-tool to cut out the pockets.
I start with two cuts with the circular saw then gently run the blade of the oscillating saw into the pocket. I’m checking that I’m plunging square to each face. I remove the wood in long blocks. I’ll use a sharp chisel to finish up. This turned out to work very well and I got faster and more accurate as I cut each pocket.
I used the 4×5 cross member to test fit each pocket as I went along. I’m so impressed with the versatility of this saw. It’s the only way I know of making an accurate plunge cut with sharp, square, right angles using a power tool.
My posts are full six inches by six inches. Unfortunately the post saddles I have fit a five and a half inch post. So I had to shave them down a bit with saw and chisel.