Small Catwalk Brace
I made the stand for the small catwalk out of spare pieces of EMT. Might have looked better if I had just bought the "right" parts... but it certainly has character!
Small Catwalk Mount
The attachment to the gazebo would have been a lot easier if I had just used some galvanized hanging strap, but I think this looks a lot better. Kind of a torch sconce kind of thing?
Small Catwalk Surface
I put these notches in the surface of the walkway to divert water, and provide a little better grip. As you can see from the dust stains in the other pictures, it at least diverts water all right. And I've never slipped on it either, so the traction is fine too.
Instead of chipping our tree branch trimmings, I cut them to length and sort them by diameter for firewood. A bucket of each size makes a fairly good fire.
Big Catwalk Rail
If you watch the video you'll notice that I added an extra brace here. The rail post was just too flimsy without it.
Here's the big catwalk, running from the roof of the gazebo to the roof of the enclosed patio.
Tree Seat Mounting
There's nothing holding the seat down on the supports except gravity, or against the tree except the rope tension. The screws are loose to allow for the tree growth, and I back them out a little every few months to keep up with it.
Tree Seat Overview
I wanted a nice chair to sit against this tree, so I came up with this.
The design was carved freehand with a ball-end bit in a router, then selectively stained and sealed. The wear around the base is from before I had permanent support blocks. The seat still worked, but was easy to dislodge, so it spent a lot of time swinging against the trunk in the breeze. I'll have to re-finish it at some point.
Low BenchA low bench in our gazebo, for kids!
The two knots in the lumber inspired this radial pattern.
Knot CloseupClose view at engraved wood and a knot
I tried to work with the natural flow of the wood, which included respecting this knot by having the branches wrap around it.
Bench structureThe gazebo bench support structure
I didn't want any visible fasteners on top, so I used splice plates to anchor the formed wood beam to the seat above. The ends are supported on angled blocks, so the whole bench can be lifted and moved out of the way to open the gazebo up even more.
High BenchA bench in our gazebo
I wanted the benches to be mostly flat, to make them comfortable to sit on, and yet drain well, so they wouldn't collect standing water. This branching pattern is what I came up with. Turned out rather nicely!
Engraving CloseupA close view of the bench engraving
I did the bench engraving with a ball-end mill bit held in a router. All of the cuts were made free-hand. The benches were then stained, and the top surface sanded down, to darken the grooves and make them stand out a bit more.
Radial engravingRadial bench engraving
Better view of the bench engraving
GazeboSide Yard with Gazebo
Our house came with this gazebo in the side yard. It used to have trellises and wood siding all around it, but that just seemed to collect spiders, and the wood was rotting, so we took that all down. Then we put up a few angled braces made from branches which we had left over from trimming the trees. Oh, and re-painted the posts.
ChairsChairs in the Gazebo
We have a few outdoor chairs that we keep in the gazebo for seating.
Root chairand Cody
I carved this chair from the root ball of a tree we pulled out while making my Dad's basketball court.
Root closeupRoot chair closeup
The structure of root wood seems a bit different from that of normal wood. Spiders seem to like it a lot.
Baby on benchCody on the gazebo bench
It's just the right height for toddlers to sit on!