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The new den originally was a covered porch on the back of the house. The previous owner had closed it in, framed in a raised floor on top of the concrete slab but never completed the renovation. Raising the floor made the existing concrete steps too low and unusable. We decided to add a small deck on the back rather than just rebuild the steps from the door. I had a good idea of what I wanted to do with the deck, but as I began to dig the post holes, my plan began to change. The first two attempts at digging holes uncovered buried obstacles so I adjusted my plan at each obstacle. Before long I decided to just let the ground conditions, materials on hand, and my imagination dictate the shape of the deck.

Once I had the post set, I laid out a line on all post level with the top of the ledger board bolted onto the house. Using this line a a guide I notched out each post to accept the 2×6 joists around the perimeter.


Once the shell was built the decking went on quickly. The basic deck took less than an afteernoon to build. The steps and railing would take a little bit longer to complete.

The stairs consisted of a small deck landing one step down from the main deck. The stringer cut from 2 x 10’s were attached to the landing ti create the rest of the stair. The rail is constructed with 3/4 inch PVC and Pressure treated pine 2×4, with a cap made from the standard 1×4 decking. I extended the posts and wrapped them in decking to hid the joints. The entire project cost about $200.00. In the future I would like to add another level or 2 to the deck. But for now it is functional and useful.

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