How to build a Plywood Sawhorse

If you are a DIY lover, or are passionate about building things yourself, you must know how convenient having a sawhorse can be most of the time. Placing what you need to cut over it so as to be better able to handle it will save you a great deal of effort, as well as time. However you never got to buy one because they tend to be quite costly. Most are also a bit too bulky. So, why don’t you try building a sawhorse yourself? It is really quite simple. In this guide we will describe how you can build a sawhorse made from plywood. Let’s get started!

What do you need?

First off, you will need to acquire the materials you will be using. You will need either sheets of MDF or plywood that are at least 18mm thick – we recommend you use 25mm thick for extra strength. The board should measure 8 inches by 4 inches. It is important to stick to plywood as it is stronger than MDF when it comes to building a sturdy sawhorse.

You will also need plenty of self-tapping screws and wood glue. As tools you will require a jigsaw or a circular saw for cutting, and a screwdriver. Both a regular and an electric screwdriver will be okay, but obviously electric tools make any job far easier since you will need to do a lot of cutting and fix a lot of screws.

A Simple Plywood Sawhorse. Image credit: The Wood Whisperer

Step by step guide to build the sawhorse

The cutting phase:

  1. First you will need to cut the various parts that will be needed. These include four side panels of equal size. These should measure 76.2cm by 40.6cm at the base, and 10.2cm at the top centre point. These measurements are ideal because you will be able to cut them out from a single sheet of plywood, without wasting material unnecessarily.
  2. You will also need to cut a semi-circular shape at the base of each of these side panels. This will serve as the feet of the sawhorse, and will enable it to keep steady even when placed on an uneven surface.
  3. You have to cut the worktop of your sawhorse. Two lengths of plywood measuring 165cm by 40cm should be ideal. When attached to each other, they will create a solid surface which will be suitable to bear whatever weight you will need to place over.
  4. Next we move on to cutting the support joists. You can cut these from the remaining plywood. You should be able to cut out 12 support joists, each measuring 40.6cm by 10.2cm.
  5. You will also need to cut another two pieces of plywood measuring 40cm by 2.5cm. These will be attached to the sawhorse’s top to help keep the top in place.
A Typical Timber Subframe. Image credit: Imgur

The building phase:

  1. Now that all the parts have been cut, you can start building the sawhorse. Attach the double-lined joists together so as to have six in all. Use wood glue and clamp them together well to avoid any movement.
  2. When they have dried and set, attach them one by one along the centre of the side panels, in a vertical manner. Space them evenly, about 23cm apart from one another. With 1.25” screws attach the joist at either end so as to create the bases of the sawhorse.
  3. Next, you will move on to the worktop. You can either attach the two sheets you had cut out together with wood glue and wood screws. Or else, if you want an even sturdier top, you will need to build up a sub-frame. This can be built using the remaining plywood. All you need to do is cut two strips of equal lengths as the length of the worktop, add side joists at increments, and then attach the frame to the surface with screws going through the base sheet. A sub-frame is a good idea for a sawhorse as it prevents warping and bending, which is a common possibility when considering the weight and pressure that it will need to hold when put to use.
  4. Now that your sawhorse’s worktop is ready, you will need to attach two cleats from either edge of the top. These will basically be like stops which will keep the sawhorse in place while you are using it.
  5. Finally it is all about assembling it and putting it to good use. Scaffold platforms can be set at adjustable heights for your convenience.

If you want to make your sawhorse look more professional, you can sand it lightly with a sandpaper. This is recommended especially at the points where the cutting was made. In this way you will remove any splinters or edges that could be a bit sharp. Finally you can stain it with some wood varnish or paint. The finish will make it look better, as well as improve its longevity.

How to Choose The Best Running Shoes For Ankle Support

Give Your Feet Suitable Cushioning

Going for a run does not require much. Actually, your shoes are the most important thing to consider and therefore they need to be top notch. Many people may experience ankle issues after several weeks of running, and this may be due to the wrong pair of running shoes, or shoes that do not offer sufficient support to your ankles.

If not well-supported during runs, ankles undergo a lot of strain which can lead to ankle instability, repeated ankle sprains, and ankle pain. The ankle has to bear almost the entire body weight, except that of the feet when standing, so it has to be strong enough to withstand the impact of walking and running.

The shoes should also provide maximum support to the tendons, ligaments, and muscles around the ankle joint. The ankle joint, as with other joints is made of bones that are capped with cartilage and surrounded by a capsule. Its strength is dependent on the tendons, ligaments, and muscles around it.

Common Running Injuries. Image credit: The Run Experience

Causes & Cures

The main causes of ankle problems include:

  • incorrect posture while walking
  • improper or ill-fitting footwear
  • too much body weight
  • repeated rolling and twisting of the ankle when running or walking.

This, however, should not worry you. Shoe manufacturers have designed shoes that offer ankle support, and you only need to know what to look out for. Highly regarded sports manufacturers such as New Balance running shoes have a number of models that offer excellent heel cushioning combined with ankle support, such as the 1080v7 running shoe.

In this article, we will give you a few tips on how to choose proper shoes for ankle support, no matter the brand name.

It is important to note that shoes alone or paired with ankle braces may not completely prevent an injury, but additional support from the right shoes will help in reducing stress on your ankle by reducing the amount of wear on the joint. This is because maximum ankle support helps in reducing the ankle movement which is key in prevention of injuries.

Every time you are buying running shoes, always choose shoes that protect your ankles. The shoe you choose should provide support from all sides. Here are some of the aspects that you should put into consideration when choosing a running shoe that is suitable for your ankles.

  1. Find the right size
    Some people may find this obvious, but it cannot be overemphasized. It is crucial to find a shoe that fits properly especially because it protects your foot, leg, and ankle region. Many people assume that they know their shoe size and end up buying the wrong shoe size, therefore, it is necessary that you visit a store where you can have a professional fitting done. Wearing the wrong size of the shoe can lead to injuries.
  1. Look out for arch support
    You must consider your arch which is the most important part of your foot. If you have a low arch with little support, you are likely to have problems with your ankles. You will, therefore, need to buy shoes that have a substantial bend in the arch. It should be firm and flexible while running, and neither too hard nor too soft.
  1. Ensure it has good traction
    Poor traction underneath your running shoe is a major cause of ankle problems. If the shoe does not have a grip and is slippery on the surface, you are likely to slide which can lead to falls and injuries.
  1. Check for sole support
    This is especially important if you have arthritis. Look for a shoe with a thicker sole at the heel so that when your foot strikes the surface, you are able to bounce back with minimal impact. This also helps in reducing the symptoms of arthritis and will reduce stress when running.
  1. Check for lateral support
    If your ankles roll inwards or outwards naturally, then you need to get running shoes that counteract this tendency. This will prevent your ankles from sprains while you run by keeping the stable and in great shape.
New Balance 1080v7 running shoes offer excellent ankle support & cushioning. Image credit: New Balance

Remember, buying a pair of running shoes during the morning hours is not advisable. This is because, in the course of the day, feet tend to swell and are at their largest in the afternoon or early evening. This is the best time to fit shoes, and always ask to be allowed to do a test jog around the store or the lock if possible.

The correct pair of running shoes will help in supporting your ankles, but you may need to also look at some other factors like wearing high heels. Strive to find shoes that allow for maximum body weight distribution across the soles of the feet. Flat shoes with food arch support may be a better option.

It is also advisable that you seek proper advice from a podiatrist. They will give expert advice on the possible causes of your ankle problems if you are experiencing any. They will also do a gait analysis so as to give informed advice on the proper kind of running shoe for your gain and for maximum foot support. They will also advise on the right insoles for you if needed.