This is a free video, want to watch it?

Just log into the site and you can enjoy this video and many more!

This seems like a large project that might be a little daunting for those not so experienced in woodworking, but it’s made using step-by-step processes that are simple and effective, and all of the work can be done using hand tools. It has some very basic woodworking joints that ensure strength and longevity combined with screws and glue. You will love this project as will your children and your grandchildren.

MAKING THE BOX – 1:23:59
MAKING THE LID – 2:09:41

Posted in , ,


  1. JIM CHALOUPKA on 19 June 2020 at 4:49 pm

    AH, how do you keep the cat out?

  2. Robert Sefczek on 19 June 2020 at 5:04 pm

    I would say make solid panels on the ends and have them slide together to close off the sand box when not in use

    • Caleb Tuttle on 22 June 2020 at 8:24 pm

      I was thinking about making a sliding feature for the cover as well!

    • tglozano on 30 June 2020 at 2:41 pm

      I agree to cover. My daughter says there are cats in the neighborhood and could be used as their litter box (toilet).

  3. jurgen01 on 19 June 2020 at 10:44 pm

    Excellent project for the grandkids. Thank you.!

  4. Scott Carro on 20 June 2020 at 12:43 am

    I appreciate showing the sharpening of the marking knife. Little reminders of the little things that make a big difference.

  5. stevewales on 20 June 2020 at 2:16 pm

    Hi Paul
    Thanks for a very ‘different’ project – I have a 5yr Old who will love this.

    I have a question though – If left out all year in the Irish (British) weather, I wonder how long it would last?
    Sand would obviously quite quickly abrade the surface treatment. I might have the time and inclination to empty out the sand. clean, reapply a good finish (floor varnish or Spar varnish) then cover for the winter.
    I fear though that if this was an inter-generational gift then ‘Little Tommy’s’ parent/s might well not have the same dedication to its care.
    Have you heard of the new wood product ACCOYA??
    – soft wood that is processed “Acetylated” (Acetic acid – vinegar) smells of vinegar
    From the website
    (It is) “Supported by a 50 year above ground and 25 year in-ground warranty”

    it is substantially more expensive than soft wood.

    I have used it to make the slats of one of those benches that use cast iron Endpieces. it takes finish really well
    (BTW I have no affiliation to the product)

    • Izzy Berger on 3 July 2020 at 12:38 pm

      Hi Steve,

      Paul says:
      My perspective on this is that the sandbox should last at least 5 years and probably 10 if left untreated. It’s a matter of personal preference, if you want it to last longer than that or indeed if you want to apply any finish at all. There are too many finished out there for me to give anything but a cursory glance at them. Outdoors, on a project like this, with a child that will outgrow the box in a year or two is my primary concern. I know it will last for several years.

      Kind Regards,

  6. Gary Mercer on 21 June 2020 at 3:16 pm

    Thank You Paul!
    Seems like a great project that teaches how to make a very stable sandbox that any youngster would have hours of enjoyment using. I enjoyed watching your attention to the details when you are making it. I like the ventilation the slats provide to this and the lightweight aspect also. I seem to get great tips with each video you present… there never seems to be an end to learning from you.


  7. P McC on 22 June 2020 at 2:16 pm

    No glitches here.

  8. kevinfricault on 22 June 2020 at 6:30 pm

    In this Video you use a countersink that you discribed and gave the brand name of in an earlier series. I’ve been looking through them and haven’t been able to find the video I’m looking for. Can you give us that brand name again. Also, my wife thought it was funny you called me an apprentice 🙂 Thank You!

    • stevewales on 22 June 2020 at 10:16 pm

      There are plenty of low price examples on flebay —
      search “Countersink and Deburring Tool Set”
      Maybe not up to a metal machinist’s quality, but plenty good on wood.
      I’ve always called them ‘snails’ – they have the advantage that at even at a slow speed, they don’t produce a ragged finish like the ‘Rose’ type countersinks tend to do (especially in Soft Wood)

  9. Colin Scowen on 22 June 2020 at 7:02 pm

    Not sure where you are based, but if you search for deburring cutter on the interweb, you should find what you are looking for. In the UK (and probably through mail to EUrope), look at

    In the US, I know that Harbor Freight sell them, as I bought mine there last time I was in the US on business. They come in a pack of 3. Elsewhere, I am not sure, but I guess you will be able to find them if you look. They are for metalworking rather than woodworking, but they do work well in wood.

  10. TABOADA JEAN-CHRISTOPHE on 22 June 2020 at 7:39 pm

    Very nice little add-on for a future garden to be found 😉
    Would you consider a no-metal version, where screws would be replace by… say, dowels ? Or other wooden-only joints ? I’m a bit concerned about cohabitation of metal and wood (the place it is likely to be used is at the sea shore, where if you forget a fork in the garden, it is just a mound of rust the next season 😉
    Anyway, I’m sure it’s going to be a great fun to copy/modify/adapt this design (no grand-children to build it for, alas, but other ideas around gardening-helpers…)

    • Izzy Berger on 3 July 2020 at 3:03 pm


      Paul says:
      No, I doubt whether dowels would hold as well. I suggest you use decking screws if you’re concerned about rusting.

      Kind Regards,

  11. Simon Richardson on 7 July 2020 at 11:00 am

    Looks like a cross between a bier and a butchers trestle ! No but seriously, it needs a lid ( cats,water) or something to support a tarp cover (so it does not get a puddle in it) .

  12. Colin Scowen on 7 July 2020 at 6:55 pm

    At two hours and six minutes (on the youtube video) Paul states that the two slat boards are used to cover the sand to keep cats out. They are not attached to the arms.

  13. Steve McCombs on 18 August 2020 at 12:41 am

    “I would just grab it near the center and find the pivot point and drill there” is such a sublime way of passing on your experience in ways that go beyond the technical aspects of woodworking. Nothing fancy, just a practical method to get the work done.

    Thank you for the many lessons imparted and i look forward to many more.


    P.S. If you aren’t already an honorary Texan, we need to correct that.

  14. tomleg on 3 October 2020 at 12:07 am

    I’m building one, now, looking forward to adding my photo to the gallery … and to my friend’s granddaughter’s face when she sees it at Christmas.

    @1:53:23, when you are talking about measuring for the notch, I would use a trysquare resting on the top surface to measure the depth to one side, and transfer that measurement to the other side. It isn’t a gauge but doesn’t really need to be that accurate. and it seems a lot easier.

    This project has raised a question in my mind … using big-box SPF (spruce-pine-fir, the anonymous wood) with rounded corners, how do you precisely transfer a measurement around a rounded corner, especially if it is an angle measurement?

  15. danwell phiri on 6 August 2021 at 8:35 am

    I love this so so much, pleas help me the whole plan my boy will love this and his can help me not to go to beach all the time. please.

  16. Jean Claude Peeters on 17 May 2022 at 4:53 pm

    I would just glue a strip to the last board, cut to length so it fits between the leg. (marking the position on the last board first)
    That way the thin strip can’t distort and you don’t have to saw the notches.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.