• In this video, This Old House senior technical editor, Mark Powers shows how to put a bar cart together using cedar and outdoor-grade materials.

    1. Cut the pieces
    2. Cut out the top tray's handles
    3. Attach ledges to the long sides
    4. Make the tray frames
    5. Attach the bottom boards
    6. Cut and mark the legs
    7. Make the notch cuts
    8. Drill holes and recesses
    9. Assemble the sides
    10. Drill pilot holes for the bottom tray
    11. Add insert nuts to the bottom tray
    12. Add insert nuts to the crosspieces
    13. Assemble the cart bottom
    14. Attach the second side
    15. Attach wheels to the axle
    16. Build the bottle rack

    Project timeline

    Friday: Cut and prep the lumber for the trays, crosspieces, and handle.

    Saturday: Assemble the trays, and cut and prep the legs for the cart's sides.

    Sunday: Assemble the cart, and make the bottle rack.
    • Difficulty: Moderate
      Making accurate measurements and notching the legs requires precision (and patience).
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      Tools List

      • miter saw
        miter saw
      • jigsaw
        jigsaw to cut handles for the top tray
      • pneumatic brad nailer
        pneumatic brad nail gun with 1 3⁄8-inch brad nails
      • chisel
        wood chisel to clean up notch cuts
      • drill
        drill/driver with various bits: ¼ inch, 5⁄16 inch, 3⁄8 inch, combination countersink, and 1-inch paddle
      • flathead screwdriver
        large flathead screwdriver
      • hex keys
        hex key sized to the hex-head connector bolts
      • sandpaper
        120-grit sandpaper and block wood file

      Shopping List

      1x2 cedar for the cart's legs and the ledges for the trays. Buy 22 feet.

      1x3 cedar for the trays and bottle rack. Buy 30 feet.

      1x4 cedar for the tall sides of the top tray and bottle rack. Buy 6 feet.

      2x deck pickets of cedar or treated lumber to make the crosspieces that support the removable top tray.

      Paint can to trace the shape of the handles for the top tray.

      Wood glue

      1-inch hardwood dowel

      ½-inch-long brass insert nuts, ¼-20 size

      40-millimeter-long hex-head connector bolts, ¼-20 size

      1½ inch stainless-steel screws

      -inch aluminum screw posts

      Set of two 9-inch wheels with axle, cotter pins, and axle caps.