Sunday DIY: Smooth screed deed

By Greig Morgan

Greig Morgan has the perfect tool to keep your lawn on the level.

Final step. Photo / Doug Sherring
Final step. Photo / Doug Sherring

Here's a simple-to make tool that will be invaluable for screeding and levelling new lawn areas of topsoil and grass seed.

Or use it to prep fine gravel for paving areas so you can do it in comfort, rather than bending to use a plank of wood.

Next to the dog, this could become man's best friend.

Step 1
Measure and cut your sheet of plywood to length. I cut mine at 480mm by the width of the ply 1200mm. Now measure up 100mm on the two outside edges and find the top centre point at 600mm. This will give you the shaped angle you need to cut along.

Step 2
Measure and cut on your sheet of plywood 100mm by the width of the ply 1200mm.

Now scribe a pencil line about 25mm up and starting at one end mark a series of V type angles at about 25mm apart and up to the line, then carefully cut these teeth out with a jigsaw.

Cut teeth step 2. Photo / Doug Sherring
Cut teeth step 2. Photo / Doug Sherring

Step 3
Run a bead of glue along the front edge of the rake and line up the teeth component flush with the top and the ends, fixing the screws about 20mm at the ends and 100mm spacings.

Step 4
Cut your handle to length. I made this one nice and long, then marked at one end about 25mm up to 300mm and cut along this tapered angle. This tapered edge faces the teeth with the flat part of the handle glued and screwed in from the rake frame.

Shape the handle to roundness using a spoke shave or a hand plane.

 Make and shape handle Step 4. Photo / Doug Sherring
Make and shape handle Step 4. Photo / Doug Sherring

Step 5
Measure and mark in about 100mm at either end on the underside of the rake. This will determine the length of the support braces.

Now mark one end about 20mm and the other 40mm, cutting along this tapered edge.

Run a bead of glue along the bottom of the non-tapered edge and 40mm front edge, then fix to the mark with screws.

Step 6
Sand to remove all sharp edges and prevent splinters, and apply a stain if you like.

Finish by wiping with a soft cloth.

- Herald on Sunday

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