Here is the trailer full of pallets we brought home. I'm not going to lie, they aren't real pretty stacked on the side of my house.
Here my husband is using a hand saw to cut the wood off the pallets. We read up on how some other people took wood off the pallets. We tried prying the wood off then realized how long it was going to take to take the nails out. My husband just started sawing the wood and it literally took about two minutes to cut the wood up one section of the pallet. Just be careful not to cut the hand saw cord. My sister-in-law could tell you a story about that but that's a story for later right Sara?
Don't worry about cutting exactly straight because the wood will need to be trimmed exactly later anyway.
This process took my husband about an hour. I took a few pictures, ran one of my daughters toan activity and came back to my husband and son being completely finished. They didn't cut all the pallets you saw on trailer. They cut what they thought they needed just for the one wall and kept the others intact for the next project.
Here is what the pallet looks like one you get all the wood planks off. My husband later went back and pryed all the vertical pieces off and saved the two by fours for another project. I will share that project with you later, (DIY Farmhouse Table).
Here is the wood they were able to get from the pallets.
My son and husband went through and marked all the studs with a chalk line. You can nail gun the pallet wood into the wall directly not using the stud but I'll tell you why that's not a good idea later.
We just started laying the boards out on the floor side by side to see how they would look. They weren't all the same lengths because not all pallets are the same size. Also, not all the wood was the same width. This is where you will have to have a table saw. You could use a hand saw but you probably won't get the exact straight line cutting as you would with a table saw.
We started nailing pieces on the wall with a nail gun. Our bedroom is by our garage so we were able to keep the air compressor in the garage. It is very loud. We found that working as a team made this part go much faster. I had the nail gun and a measuring table in the bedroom. My husband was in the garage with the miter saw and table saw. I measured the pieces and marked them with a pencil while he cut the pieces to size. We also worked on carrying several pieces in and piling them up. I would lay the pieces out side by side to see how they looked. All these pallets were fairly weathered which is the look I wanted. There were light brown newer pieces and dark brown and gray pieces that were really weathered. The more weathered they looked, the more I liked them. The wood had so much character with the aging process. I also wanted the boards to offset each other and not match in color. You will have to just eyeball this to what design you want.
We nailed the boards lining them up with the studs, two nails at each stud marked. Making the nail holes exactly one of top of the other does look better I think. That's why I wanted to handle the nail gun. There were some boards that I had to really press on due to them being a little warped. The more aged boards did have this problem. Once we got a few nails in them, they straightened out.
My husband did measure around the return air vent and the electrical outlet. These were areas I wanted him to handle. The vent was perfect, it just screwed into the pallet wall. The outlet was a little trickier. I talked to an electrician at work and explained to him that the electrical box in the wall wouldn't come out to the pallet wall. It wasn't long enough. He gave me this little piece of plastic tubing that you put on the screw to lengthen the screw somehow when you put back in the wall. I don't really even know what this is called. We tried it and it worked to make the outlet box fit secure in the wall and the outlet plate fit flush against the pallet wall. I'm not sure how secure it would be if someone were to yank a cord out of it by accident but we aren't going to use this outlet much and it was used by an electrician so we thought it was okay.
Here is the finished product once we got everything cleaned up and back in order. I've seen put a vintage buffet in front of it and I'm working on a DIY pallet project/photo project. I will show you that later in another post. This wall ads so much character to my bedroom. We chose to do the bedroom first because we wanted to make sure we liked it before doing another wall in our house and if we made mistakes on it, not many people would see it. We could always pull if off and re-sheetrock it if needed. I'd love to hear what you think and if any of you tried a pallet wall and your thoughts on the process.
Electrical Hand Saw
Electrical Miter Saw
Electric Nail Gun
Nails for Nail Gun