Windmills have been around for centuries, but what if you could add a much smaller wooden one to your backyard to enhance the landscape?
I know it sounds like an interesting outdoor feature; however, the real challenge is building one. When I moved into my new home in Texas a couple of years ago, I was not satisfied with the spartan patio.
The gardening enthusiast in me decided to give it an upgrade of a rustic style, and what’d be better than a DIY wooden windmill to do that! These structures are meant to invoke a pastoral charm that reminds you of the simple country lifestyle. While I was building the model from scratch, I decided to document the whole process so I can share all the details with you.
Hi! I'm Stacy Smith, and today I'll tell you the nitty-gritties of how to make a wooden windmill. I'm confident that after reading this guide, you'll have a clear idea of how to go about it.
Without further ado, let's get down to business.
Steps To Make A Wooden Windmill
Step 1: Design The Side Templates
Draw a polygon on a large sheet of paper or cardboard. Ideally, the dimensions should be 9 inches on top, 20 inches tall, and 12 inches on the bottom. After that, carefully cut out the shape. This will help you make the sides of the structure.
Step 2: Design The Template For The Top
Draw a hexagon with sides measuring 9.5 inches on a paper or cardboard. Then cut out the template, which will be later used to build the top of the windmill.
Step 3: Design The Blade Template
For this, you need to draw an 'X' on a large paper or cardboard. Each projection of the 'X' should be 16 inches long and 2 inches wide. Also, mark a line of 2 inches dead center of the 'X' shape on all four sides, which will create a square right in the middle. Cut out the shape as one piece, and be careful not to cut into the square.
Step 4: Replicate Your Template Shapes On Wood Boards
Place the templates on your wood boards and use a carpenter pencil to trace each onto the wood. For the sides and the top use 1-inch thick wood panels, and as for the 'X', half-an-inch will do. You will require 6 side pieces, 1 hexagonal top, and an 'X'. Also, draw a circle with a 2-inch diameter.
Step 5: Cut Out The Shapes
I recommend using circular saws, as they are ideal for long, straight cuts. However, for the smaller shapes, a jigsaw machine is more suitable. If you have both, use the circular one to cut out the sides and a jigsaw machine for the rest.
Step 6: Drill A Hole In The Middle Of The 'X' And Circle
It's best to use a 1/2" diameter drill bit to make the holes. In case you don't have one, use a drafting compass to draw a ½-inch circle on the wood shapes for accurate cutting. These holes are meant for a wooden dowel of the same diameter, which you can get from any hardware store.
Step 7: Sand And Paint The Pieces
Sand all the individual pieces with sandpaper, except the dowel. This ensures a smooth finish and higher paint adhesion. After that, you can paint these parts as per your preference. Depending on the weather, it may take up to 48 hours for the paint to dry completely.
Step 8: Construct The Mainframe
Place 2 of the side panels on your workstation or a level surface. Put a pencil in between the pieces and then push the wood together, forming a gap the width of the pencil. Repeat the process with the rest of the pieces while laying them side by side.
Connect the pieces by applying painter's tape on the top, middle, and bottom of every joint. This will help keep the sides together while forming the windmill body.
Step 9: Set The Body Upright And Assemble
Keep the taped side facing outward and put all the pieces together to form a closed tower. Also, secure the last joint with painter's tape. After that, apply high-quality wood glue to the top rim and place the hexagonal piece on the top. Press firmly and allow the glue to dry. Scrape off any excess glue after it dries.
Step 10: Apply Glue On The Inside
Flip the mainframe upside down and apply wood glue on the interior joints. Be generous with the adhesive as you'd want the structure to stay firm and well secured. Set aside and let the glue dry off completely.
Step 11: Insert The Dowel Through The 'X'
Slide a 12-inch dowel about 2 inches inside the hole created on the 'X'. Don't forget to apply wood glue in the joint.
Step 12. Attach The Blades To The Structure
Create an eyehole about 6 inches from the top on one side, and put the dowel inserted in the 'X', through the hole. Now the blades will have the clearance to spin freely. Make sure to apply wood glue on the hole drilled on one of the sides. This will ensure that the dowel stays in place.
Voila! You have the perfect wooden windmill that you can keep in your garden, backyard, or patio. You may also add other elements to your newly-made outdoor model to make it even more attractive. To create a wooden mill or anything for that matter, check out the best deck boxes that can store your tools in this guide.
For instance, you could paint doors and windows on one side to make it look more original. These small touches can really enhance the overall look of your windmill model. That said, I hope all the instructions are easy to follow and that you will finish this fun DIY project in no time. On that note, I'll be taking your leave.
Till next time!