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How To Build A Free Standing Pergola

OK, the biggest question I’m asked is “How the heck do you make the scroll on the ends?”. This design feature can really make or break the pergola appearance. In this video, I had a mental picture of what I wanted it to look like in my head before I started. So, I just drew it out with my eyes closed. Funny, I know but very true. Knowing it would look a lot different once cut out so I cut one to try it.

Once I saw that it all looked good, it was time to start cutting. My choice was a Bosch barrel grip jigsaw, with a rough-cut wood cutting only blade. The rough-cut blade will make a more aggressive cut, which in turn, means it will be a lot easier to cut those curves.

Place the rafters at 16 inches on center for a nice look, but for the better shade, you may want to try 10 or 12 inches on center “apart”.

Hey, don’t forget this one. Pergolas are awesome looking if built right, but even the best carpenter can screw this one up. Think sun! Yup, what direction does the sun rise and set is how you should set the rafters. They should be perpendicular to the sun. This way, the pergola make the shade. Otherwise, it will still look nice but won’t create shade. I mean, that’s OK but why not make some nice shade while you’re doing the planning?

How to build a pergola

How to build a pergola

Watch this video on YouTube.
How To Build A Free Standing Pergola
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Comments ( 2 )

  1. Dominick

    The curve is whatever you want it to be. There is no set standard for these.

  2. Erlene flowers
    May 14, 2015 at 10:59 am

    you spent no time in this video explaining how to make the standing posts or how to connect the starter post to the end. Was there another video? A lot of time spent on explaining cutting a curve.

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