This project was to rebuild an existing Pergola. It is very similar in design to the prior one, however, I used different size lumber and integerated a full size bench for usability. Since the existing posts were treated lumber, they were still in very good condition and I was able to reuse them.
The first thing to research before starting your project is to find out if the area you live in has any restrictions. Some areas, depending on Home Owner's Association, will not allow such a structure or may place restrictions on whether it will be attached to the home or free standing.
Since the Joist Hangers were already in place including the posts, the construction proceeded rapidly. A materials list will be provided at the bottom of the page for reference.
The beams are 4"x8"x20' long made of cedar and anchor bolted to the posts.
Once I secured the beams to the house, I installed a trim to conceal any connections. The same was done to the posts by using 2"x6"x10' and 2"x10"x10'. This provides a more buffed appearance and a cleaner look.
One thing to keep in mind in construction is what other additions will be integrated into the structure and in this case, this would have been the benches built in between the posts. The dimensions for the benches are detailed under Project 12.
The main difference with this Pergola from the previous one I had is that I used 2"x3" lumber for the top instead of 2"x2". It really made a difference. As most of us who are trying to build a quality feature and save money, I integrated Cedar with Treated lumber. They both blended well because I used a Transparent Redwood Stain by Penofine. Since the cedar was not treated, it only required one coat, however, the treated lumber required two in order to coincide with the overall color.
In order to get the most use of the materials, I used 2' long boards on the center of the structure. This provided a different design and minimized waste. Also, Cedar 2"x3" lumber only comes in 8' lenghts.
One thing that I do on most of my projects as I did with this one was install Rope Lighting. It provides a pleasent ambience and becomes a very usable area day or night.
The framing of 1"x4" lumber around the top brought everything together giving it dimension and definition.
I hope that these projects inspire you to bring to your garden the peacefulness that we all long for after a hard day at work.