To get the most out of any patio, deck or balcony, add furniture, as with any other room. The best outdoor furniture is attractive, weatherproof, lightweight, durable and easy to clean. If you're a do-it-yourselfer who can spare a couple of Saturdays for a project, now you can add "easy to build" and "inexpensive" to the list.
Virtually anyone can build this handsome outdoor dining set in just a couple of weekends and at a fraction of ready-made furniture's cost. The key is PVC pipe. To build this set as pictured, you need 96 feet of schedule 40 PVC pipe, a few PVC fittings and caps, particle board and plastic laminate, canvas, glue and nails.
Construction is a simple matter of cutting the pipe to length, assembling with PVC cement and adding the table top and chair seats. The pipe may be left white or painted.
The PVC Dining Set plan, No. 665, is $9.95 and includes step-by-step directions with photos, construction diagrams, sewing instructions for the chair cushions, separate shopping lists and cutting schedules for the table and chairs (so it's easy to add extra chairs), an option for a round table top and a toll-free help line for project questions.
A package of four PVC plans, No. C25, is available for $24.95 and includes this plan plus plans for a lawn swing, a set of lawn furniture and a twin-seater. A catalog picturing hundreds of do-it-yourself projects is $2. Please include $4 for postage and handling (except catalog-only orders) and allow about two weeks for delivery.
To order by mail, clip this article and send it with a check or money order to U-Bild Features, c/o St. Petersburg Times, 3800 Oceanic Drive, Suite 107, Oceanside, CA 92056. To order by credit card, call toll-free 1-800-828-2453. Visit U-Bild on the Web at u-bild.com.