Sunday, May 12, 2013

Making My Own Post Caps

Post caps can cost $20 or more each, and I had 16 posts to cap. I spent less on my first car. So, not that I am cheap or anything, I felt motivated to make my own post caps.

To start, Home Depot doesn't sell pressure-treated trim molding--I would have to make my own. A few years ago I made the pine molding in our guest room, and I was very happy with the notion of doing it again. Molding makes me happy (which is perfectly normal). I have a router table just for this purpose.

I routed out long strips of pine, and got enough molding from one piece of fencing (about $1.30, not that money had anything to do with it). Then I cut them into little picture-frame pieces, all exactly the same size (well, not exact at the molecular level, but close, possibly a few atoms one way or the other).

Then I taped the pieces together and rested them on back of the post cap top that I cut with my table saw. From one 2 x 6 (about $2.70, not that I care), I got 16 tops.

Cute. This keeps the frame square.

Then I centered the frame on the cap and fastened it with 8 nails. I wanted to use my nail gun but couldn't find stainless steel brad nails. Total nail cost: 48 cents (or 49).

Here's the assembled cap, with some pine knots on the top. Yes, I could have skipped over the knots, but that would have cost me 75 cents or more, and I'm not crazy. Besides, the pine knots add character.

Then I had to cut the posts down to size. I cut one, then put up a cap temporarily and asked Cheryl what she thought. "You want them that low?" she asked, but having already cut the post, it was too late for the others to be any higher. I thought they should be a little lower, so we are now both disappointed.

One by one I pressed the caps into place with a big glop of exterior construction glue (about $2.25 total).

Total project time: about 4 hours. Total cost: I don't care.

We only did the posts in back. The side-yard posts are still about 8 feet tall, and we're planning to run wires between them and coax some pretty vines to grow on them.

Next: landscape plan


  1. That looks great!! My husband also loves do it yourself task but he hasn't think of making his own wooden post. I will let him see this and I know he will be delighted to know how to make this wooden post

  2. They are just as good looking as all the expensive ones I've shopped for! You should be proud!

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