Scrounge Chronicles: Making a Pallet/Fence Board Removal tool.

In order to sell some wood products, I need a steam bending box. Some pieces of wood will be bent, others heated to kill diseases or parasites. I want to build and leave it outdoors, so it needs to be made of pressure treated wood. New wood shrinks, which would leave gaps; so I’m using fence boards that have been left outside for years.

The boards are in sections about 6 feet wide, each section has five 2 X 4’s holding it together. I saw instructions for how to make a pallet pry tool from wood, I also saw the same tool made from steel for sale. I decided to make one and see if it would work on the fence sections.

I needed a thick piece of plate steel with a bend along one side. I looked at some pieces I had laying about, and found a thick but irregularly shaped piece. It’s in the picture below. I’ve marked where I needed to cut with a torch. I was planning on using a large crow bar for the handle; that’s why there is a white line drawn around one of the holes. I would put the blade end of the crow bar in this hole.

As it turns out, the thing is so sturdy and big that it works without a handle. the problem is that all that work bent over isn’t good for my back. So I found a piece of steel tube formerly on a trampoline, and made that into a handle. It already had a bolt hole, as well as the plate, so bolting them together was a cinch.

Some ideas seem neat on paper, but don’t work so well in real life. Not this one, it’s terrific. I timed myself removing one board from the five 2 X 4’s. That’s ten nails holding it on. I pried one board of in 24.93 seconds! I was very pleased. A bonus is that I also get to use the 2 X 4’s for this project.

2 nails at each 2 X 4