Sand Box with Built-In Seats

Submitted by Lady Goats on Thu, 05/23/2019 - 10:59
Difficulty
Beginner
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Everyone with a sand box knows that lids are a necessity. But double-duty lids are crazy awesome, especially if they convert to a seat! This easy to build sandbox with built-in seats is a reader favorite and has been built thousands of times.

For more awesome projects (or to leave some love if you've built this) visit my blog at www.ladygoats.com

photo of stained wood sandbox with fold over cover that converts to seats

It's a flat deck when closed, a sandbox with built in seats when open!  We love this simple sandbox plan by Lady Goats!

Before you get building, please take a second to read through our Outdoor Wood Finishing Secrets - there's also information on selecting wood - so that you sandbox lasts through all your children.

Dimensions
dimensions of the sandbox diagram
47 1/2" W x 47 1/2" D x 7 1/2" H

Preparation

Shopping List
  • 2 - 1 x 8 @ 8 Feet Long
  • 6 - 1 x 4 @ 8 Feet Long
  • 1 - 2 x 4 @ 8 or Stud Length

You will also need:

  • 4 sets of exterior grade hinges
  • Rope OR 4 exterior grade handles (search "gate pull" or "gate handle")
Common Materials
Cut List

(a) 2 - 1 x 8 @ 47 1/2" - long sides of box

(b) 2 - 1 x 8 @ 46" - short sides of box

(c) 12 - 1 x 4 @ 47 1/2" - top planks

(d) 4 - 2 x 4 @ 7 1/2" - arm rests

(e) 4 - 2 x 4 @ 12 1/2" - back support/handle

Tools
Tape Measure
Speed Square
Pencil
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Kreg Jig
Drill
Circular Saw
Miter Saw
Power Sander
Drill Bit Set
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!

Instructions

Step 1

Create a basic box, insetting the short sides as shown above. You can either use pocket holes or pre-drill through the long sides and use 1 1/4" screws.

Step 2

Screw in two planks on each side, countersinking your screws through the top. Space the boards 1/2" apart

Step 3

Create what will become the seat. Screw the 1 x 4 boards (1/2" apart) onto the 2 x 4 arm rests (d). Make sure that the 2 x 4s are at least 1" inset from the edge to allow for them to fold into the box nicely. (you'll be making two of these)

Step 4

I have NO idea how to add hinges in sketch-up, but attach the seat that you made in step 3 to the plank you screwed in in step 2. I found it easier to attach the hinge to the seat (on the side opposite the arm rests) and THEN attach it to the screwed-in plank. Make sure to space them 1/2" apart.

Step 5

Step 6

Attach your second set of hinges to the seat back, on the opposite side of the 2 x 4s, and then attach to the seat (easy to do with the seat "up"). Make sure to space the 1/2" apart.

Comments

Amanda H. (not verified)

Sun, 10/16/2011 - 13:26

I saw this on Pinterest and was just telling my husband about it yesterday in hopes maybe we could figure out how to build it. It is exactly what my little guy needs! Thanks so much for posting these!!

thecozychateau (not verified)

Sun, 10/30/2011 - 10:22

Love this! I also saw this on pinterest recently and am thrilled to find plans for this. Any concern with little fingers getting caught in the hinges? That is my only concern. Thoughts/suggestions?
Thanks so much!

In reply to by thecozychateau (not verified)

Lady Goats

Sun, 10/30/2011 - 16:48

Hi there! We've actually not had ANY problems with that so far. The seat pretty much stays put until everything's lifted to close it, and I really don't think little kids will be able to do that. I have a pretty strong 6 year old that can get mine closed, but mine's only 2 feet wide. The added 2 feet will add weight that'll keep it safer from the kids moving it.

DJHITMAN29

Tue, 02/07/2017 - 08:36

Hello! I'm new to the site but wanted to say that I've seen similar plans (possibly on YouTube) where the builder added some latches so that the possibility of accidents is brought down to a minimum. Small cost and easy fix to save your children's fingers! :)

Guest (not verified)

Sun, 10/30/2011 - 19:07

I have been wanting to build a sandbox with a lid that is easy to open and close. Thank you this one looks great.

Guest (not verified)

Sun, 10/30/2011 - 19:07

I have been wanting to build a sandbox with a lid that is easy to open and close. Thank you this one looks great.