How to Build a Bench in 60 Seconds - Cheater Method

5 Materials
1 Minute

Ok...SPOILER ALERT... so, this bench isn't 100% done. But, the initial assembly is around 44 seconds with the cups on the floor. I realized belatedly that I shouldn't have started with the cups already spaced out so let's call it a minute instead.  All the pieces that I am using, come, as is, and ready to go in Lowes/Home Depot, Target and the craft stores. There is absolutely no cutting involved in building this bench. I used 2 stair treads, 2 crates and 6 heavy duty plastic storage cups. Could it be any more simple than that? As soon as I paint and stain it and decide what must be permanently attached, I will update this tutorial. For now this is just an idea that was too good to wait to share with all of you!
OKAY!!!! The lumber dept guys at Home Depot took the time to analyze my bench and give me their opinions of how sturdy it is and how much weight it will support. The following is how I interpreted their analysis. They said up / down weight is not the issue. The stair treads on top of the wood crates supported like my picture would hold a great deal of weight. Possibly, even as much as 800 lbs to 900 lbs. Stair treads are specifically made to withstand a great deal of weight. They told me the boards are not going to break. The weakest part of this bench is when there is side to side movement aka horsin' around. Two adults scooting back and forth side to side is when it would be at its weakest point. To make this super strong, they suggested lag bolts for a secure hold. I think wood screws and wood glue will probably support most people's general use of this bench but go to the experts if you need more advice!! Stay tuned for a new bench entirely made from Home Depot items. Not sponsored by them in any way... just was there and I have wanted to make another bench for a while now.

Here are my supplies. 2 stair treads, 2 wood crates, and 6 heavy duty cups. Update: In the last pictures, I added legs. It took 3 minutes to stain them and 4 minutes to attach them. The stair treads were $12.65 each, the wood crates were $10 and the cups were in packages of 3 for $2. The new legs and hardware came to $20 but really money well spent. I love the look.

First, I set my cups out in a pattern.

I set one stair tread on top.

I placed the crates on top, evenly spaced from the edges.

I placed the other stair tread on top and done for a temporary bench. So easy to glue and nail it together from this point.

The stair treads give it a nice bullnose edge to the front of the bench.

I used my favorite stain on the stair treads. Dura Seal Quick Coat.

So, here is one option... just playing around with colors and that is why one is mint and one is white.

So, I bit the bullet and spent $20 on legs and hardware.

Money well spent.

I am still working on the crates... but those legs... LOVE!

Here are the latest pictures. I am finishing out the crates to not look so crate-ish. I really love this two tone look.

I am pretty happy with it.
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Have a question about this project?

3 of 76 questions
  • Mary Howard
    on Nov 18, 2019

    Are you putting doors on your bench? Just asking to see where the door molding will go. Nice job.

    • Stacy Davis
      on Nov 18, 2019

      No, I didn’t use molding but I think Hometalk added it to the materials section as a way people could dress up and customize this bench.

  • Melissa Vittetoe
    on Mar 9, 2020

    What size crates did you use?

  • Kimber McNitt
    on Jun 26, 2020

    So the boards are the exact length as they suggest in the link?

Join the conversation

2 of 595 comments
  • Bry
    on May 31, 2020

    Clever! Well done.

  • Em
    on Jun 5, 2020

    I hope you attached with screws or construction adhesive. Someone could get seriously hurt sitting on the edge. Also, all crates are not created equal. Some are for crafts and are not meant to hold the weight of a human being. Choose wisely.

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