I am very new to woodworking. As a matter of fact, my only project to
date has been cutting up an old ping-pong table to throw out. I would
like to start learning new skills and acquiring tools as they become
This brings me to my question. I have a 26' x 12' shed on a
concrete slab. There is an eight-foot wooden ramp that leads 16" up
to a set of double doors. The ramp is starting to show signs of rot.
The last board on the bottom has fallen off and board underneath is
rotted. So I have decided that I need to build a new ramp. My
question is, "Is this a project for a beginner or am I out of my
Yes, and yes. All woodworkers are beginners, and they are all out of
their mind. You'd think they'd have the sense to get a less dangerous
hobby, and one less costly. I should have taken up art. I could call
it Impressionism or you'd never know what it was. There's a Hell of a
lot more return money in it too.
When you have a specific woodworking question, try again.
Go for it - what's the worst that can happen? You end up with a weak
or broken ramp? Then you're in the same position you're in now. What
I would do: try to err on the side of overbuilding it - 2 layers of
3/4" plywood, a few 2x6 "studs" underneath (everything pressure
treated/exterior grade), figure out what angle you need to cut them off
so they're flush with the shed. If I thought it necessary, I'd sink
some heavy angle-iron or pressure treated stakes into the ground at the
bottom end of the ramp, fasten securely to bottom of ramp, cut off
excess stake. Use all stainless fasteners.
My father had a thrown-together ramp leading into his shed for years
that wasn't nearly this carefully constructed, so something like this
should last quite a while.
I'm sure this wouldn't meet any kind of code, but it's not a dwelling,
and I doubt there are any codes for ramps leading into storage sheds,
and even if there are, I doubt if anyone would care. I'm sure someone
will correct me if I'm wrong on that.
If you have the space and the money, make the ramp 16' long for a 16"
rise. Ramps such as this have two critical areas - the first 4' at
each end. The high end must be securely supported. The low end will
tend to flex because the support structure tapers. Consider using a
2x4 under the low end of the ramp to reduce the flex.
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