x 4 Basics Flip-Top Bench Table
There is an area near my front
entrance that I wanted to place a bench.
I wanted the bench to be placed between the bricks
and the wrought iron.
This space measures 47". So I went online to
look for an iron or cast aluminum park bench with a
width between 42" - 46" that would fit in this area.
I found a couple, but they were priced a little too
high for me. I was looking for something
between $50 - 75. I did find a few between
this price range but they were too long.
I came across the 2 x 4 Basics Bench that provides
the ends to a bench and you add your own 2 x 4's,
cut to the width you want.
Wall on patio where I wanted to place a
I liked the idea of being able to
make the exact width I needed. The idea of
flip-top also appealed to me. In this area during
the spring, I like to have potted plants. The
bench / table could be used as a plant stand or a
The bench ends are available at big box hardware
stores or online from various retailers. I
ordered my online. Price at Amazon on Oct 30,
2014 was $52.18 with free shipping.
The size that I decided to make the bench was 44".
According to the assembly instructions in the kit,
you need to cut 9- 2 x 4's to the bench length you
desire. They then say that two of these 2 x
4's should be cut 12.5" shorter for the two
stringers under the bench. So I needed:
- Seven 2 x 4's at 44"
- Two 2 x 4's at 31.5"
I had some 2 x 4's in my wood scrape pile that fit
some of these measurements. So I only needed
to purchase two eight foot long 2 x 4's at the hardware store.
All wood was cut to size. I also cut off a
corner of some pieces so the bench will look a little
different than the pictures. I just measure
1-3/4" on the end and made the diagonal cut.
This way the edges of the bench will look rounded.
Also easier on my legs if I run into the bench.
It is highly recommended that you paint the wood
prior to assembly. So this is what I did.
The bench would be sheltered from the weather under
the roof but I wanted to protect the wood from
water. After doing some sanding to get rid of
any rough spots, the wood was first painted with an
oil-based exterior primer.
2 x 4's
painted with coat of oil-based exterior
The one thing I did not like
about the bench ends were the color. The only
color available is "sand" which looks to me like a
cross between sand and gray. I would have
preferred black. So I spray painted the kit
pieces oil rubbed bronze.
Warning: If you paint the 2 x 4 Basics
pieces, you will void the warranty on the product.
I did not care about the warranty. The
pieces are sturdy resin. Made in the
USA. The bench will not be used heavily. So I
have faith that the pieces will last beyond the 2
year limited warranty the manufacturer gives.
By golly, I am going to paint it if I want to.
Spray painted kit parts oil rubbed bronze
If you decide to paint the kit
pieces, you might want to prime it first. I
neglected to do this and the spray paint does scrape
off easily on this material.
After one coat of primer on the wood 2 x 4's, sanding
between each coat (hey, I don't want splinters in my
butt) I painted the wood with Sherwin Williams
Resilience in Protégé Bronze SW 6153 in a satin
After I let the paint dry a couple of days, it was
time to assemble the bench.
The instructions that come with
the kit are clear. Screws hold
everything together and it is solid.
The only difficult part is screwing on the
three 2 x 4's on the seat. You have to
attach them underneath the boards.
To make this easier, I assembled the bench
on my kitchen counter. So when you get
to this last step, elevate the bench to make
it easier. If you make the bench
longer, this method might not work.
Assembled bench on kitchen counter.
PVC moulding attached to front seat board to
hide 2 x 4's flaws.
Completed bench in place in area outside
Remember I used a few 2 x 4
scraps to make this bench. Some of
these scraps were not the prettiest pieces
They ended up being used for the two
stringers underneath. The board that
ended up in the front on the seat also had
some noticeable flaws.
I found a piece of scrap PVC moulding and
attached it to the front with some finishing
nails and then painted it.
I also added a couple of lizards
to the bench. I painted these on,
prior to assembly, with acrylic paint.
To learn how I made my own lizard stencils,
please go to this page...
When next spring comes around, I will flip
the back into the table mode and place some
potted plants on it.
I will add a photo of this when I do it.
November 5, 2015