I recently built a garden bed with some Red gum sleepers ( Approx 200 x 50) that I had. I have 4 or 5 of them left. My plan is to lay them horizontally on the edges so that it becomes a seat. Do you guys feel I would need additional posts set up at equal distances to support the seating ?
Also, what is the best way to give the whole thing a better finish - Should I just oil them ? or should I go for some paneling to make it uniform ? What are the options available to me in this regard ?
Attaching some pictures of the garden bed.
It depends on how you position the slab on the top edge. If you evenly space them, you could get away with driving some long Buildex 18 - 7 x 150mm Climacoat Star Drive Landscape Screw down into the edge of the sleeper below. I recommend alternating the offset of the screws to the left and right along the length. If you were looking to overhang them, then you'll need some additional support. I'd recommend adding a Treated Pine Outdoor Timber Framing 70 x 45mm underneath, fixed into the face of the garden bed with Buildex 14-10 x 75mm Climacoat Bugle Head Batten Timber Screws. The seat can be screwed into this brace with the 75mm screws and the top edge of the garden bed with the 150mm screws. I've put together a rendering to illustrate below.
I think oiling them would look quite nice. I'd be keen to hear more about what sort of panelling you were thinking. We have a whole variety of garden panels that would look fantastic. They also look great on the fence behind it.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Thanks a lot @MitchellMc . This is really fantastic.
By paneling, I was thinking of either using a decking timber, something like https://www.bunnings.com.au/specrite-90-x-19mm-2-25m-pre-oiled-merbau-fj-decking-5-pack_p0064530 or to use a weatherboard cladding https://www.bunnings.com.au/products/building-hardware/building-boards/cladding/weatherboards .
I would like to know if either of these 2 would last if they are in contact with ground.
Also can you suggest an oil type that can be used if in case, I decide to go that path.
It's great that you've received fantastic advice from my colleague @MitchellMc. Unfortunately, neither of those two paneling pieces you mentioned is suitable for ground contact. You would need a timber rating of H3 for ground contact. I agree with my colleague's recommendation of checking out the panels and see if any of them are to your liking.
Using timber oil is a great way of protecting your garden bed and giving it a beautiful finish. There are quite a few brands when it comes to timber oil. I suggest bringing an offcut with you into a Bunnings store and asking the paint specialist for a recommendation. I'm sure they would be keen on trying out a few oils to see what effects they have on making the red really come out.
Please keep us updated with the progress of your project and let us know if you need any further assistance.
Thanks @EricL , I did have a look at the panels, they don't seem to be match my dimensions or seems to be customizable.
I will probably look at getting a timber oil then.
The timber oils seems to have name of the wood in the title, like:
Does this mean they give all exterior timbers Merbau like finish or are these oils to be applied on Merbau wood ?
My sleepers are Red gum.
If you want to use timber decking to clad the front of the garden bed, just keep it spaced away from the soil instead of resting right on it.
The oils have a colourant in them but can be used on any type of timber. The colourant just helps rejuvenate aged and greyed timber and will give a Merbau like finish. I don't think you'll find an oil with a Red gum colourant in it. It might be worth getting the Merbau version and trying a test section in an inconspicuous area to see if you are happy with the look.
I am in the process of building a 60 cm high garden bed using Sienna treated H4 Ironwood sleepers and during my trip to pick the sleepers yesterday, found these near the sleepers.
How about using these for supporting the bench? I was thinking of using them to add supports in my garden bed..