Kids Kit Project: $2 Birdhouse

Submitted by Ana White on Mon, 04/01/2013 - 11:21
Starter Projects
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About Project

Free plans to build a birdhouse from

I just heard birds chirping outside!!!

Spring is definitely here, even if it is April and we still have a couple of feet of snow outside.  And the birds are coming back, looking for summer homes.

This week, I'm going to share with you a collection of birdhouse plans that you can make from cedar fence pickets.  Costing less than $2 each (even up here in Alaska) and naturally weather resistant, cedar fence pickets are the perfect building material for little birdhouses.

This birdhouse is so easy, your little ones can make it.  I suggest kiddos putting it together with glue (try a glue that works on oily wood like Gorilla Glue or a super glue for fast dry times) and then Mom or Dad adding some nails or screws after the glue dries to make sure the birdhouse is plenty sturdy.

Dimensions shown above.


Shopping List

1 - 5 1/2" x 1/2" thick cedar fence picket (I used the dogeared 72" long ones)
1 1/4" finish nails
Glue suitable for cedar

Cut List

Cut from the Cedar Fence Picket:

2 - 7 1/4" (front and back - longest point, cut the top corners off at a 45 degree angle to make a house shape)
2 - 4 1/4" (side walls - these are just a tiny bit short to allow venting inside birdhouse)
3 - 8 1/2" (floor and roof pieces. Also rip 1/2" off one edge (cutting with the grain the long way) of one board for the shorter roof piece - see step 4)

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Miter Saw
Brad Nailer
General Instructions

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!


Step 1

Attach the floor to the back wall, with back edges flush.

Step 2

Attach side walls to back wall and floor.

Step 3

Attach front wall to sides and floor. Note that I drilled the whole afterwards with a 2" bit.

Step 4

One of the roof pieces needs to be 1/2" (or thickness of the fence pickets) less in width than the other since the overlap. Rip 1/2" off one long side (cutting with the grain) on one of the roof pieces. Attach to front and back top edges.

Step 5

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.