Sunday DIY: Pretty hidey hole for bins

By Greig Morgan

Rubbish bins add zilch to a home's look - so screen them, writes Greig Morgan

Glam up a non-hygienic utility space - and keep it safely away from the kids - with a bin cupboard. Photo / Michael Craig
Glam up a non-hygienic utility space - and keep it safely away from the kids - with a bin cupboard. Photo / Michael Craig

Rubbish bins are ugly and not particularly hygienic - you want them out of sight and out of reach of little hands and pets. This gated bin cupboard will keep bins secure in an attractive way.

Step 1 - Allow enough room to comfortably house your bins. I used our boundary fence as the back then measured 1m out from the fence and dug three post holes 600mm deep by 300mm square, spaced to allow for a gate and a centre divider. The best way to install posts accurately is to hammer in a stake at either end of the chosen site, then tie a string line between the stakes, before measuring the spacings between the posts.

Step 2 - With the holes dug nice and clean (free of loose dirt) position the 75mm side of post to the string line and check with a level that the posts are plumb and aligned with the string line. Pour in a bag of quick-set concrete with clean water (see the instructions on the bag for best results).

Step 3 - When concrete is set, use a square as a guide to measure, mark and cut posts to the required height.

Step 4 - Measure the distance between posts and convert the measurement with the aid of a square to the rails. Cut along the waste side of the line. Fit the top rail flush with the top of the posts by skew nailing (hammering in nails on an angle) through the rail into the post. Fix the bottom rail up off the ground about 100mm. I also added rails to run to the back fence.

Step 5 - Measure, mark and cut enough decking to length for palings. Skew nail palings to each rail, starting at one end and leaving even spaces between them. Make them flush with the top rail to allow for capping.

Step 6 - GateMeasure the gate opening and allow a gap of 10mm either side. Measure the height, allowing enough clearance at the bottom for the gate to open freely.

Step 7 - Convert these measurements on to the 75x50mm, marking and cutting 45-degree angles for the top and bottom plus the two side pieces. With the framing cut, fix the 45-degree joints together with glue, then screw with 75mm screws in each corner. Measure diagonally between the outside corners to ensure the gate is square, adjusting if need be.

Step 8 - Brace the frame by inserting a diagonal crosspiece, from the bottom up to the latch. This should stop the gate from sagging when hung. To do this, place the gate frame on a length of 75x50mm, mark and cut to the shape of the inside corners. Fix with glue and 75mm screws.

Step 9 - Place and fix your palings flush with the outside of the frame, leaving the same spacings between them as those on fence. Add the capping flush with the ends.

Step 10 - Measure and mark 100mm down from the top and up from the bottom. Fix your butt hinges to the outside for the gate to open outwards. Hang the gate on the post at the same height as the fence.

Step 11 - Check to see if your gate opens and closes freely before fixing the bolt.

Step 12 - Paint or stain your new bin cupboard to suit its surroundings.


Materials
• Posts 100x75mm H4 treated
• Rails & gate framing 75x50mm H3.2
• Premium pine decking dressed both sides
• Quick set concrete
• Galvanised jolt head nails 90mm
• 60mm decking nails
• Butt hinges x2 with screws
• Gate latch with screws
• Exterior wood glue
• 75x10g screws

Tools
• Protective wear
• Spade
• Level
• Handsaw/skill saw
• Builder's apron
• Hammer
• Combo square
• String line
• Tape measure
• Pencil
• Screw gun

- Herald on Sunday

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