The idea of the building a clothesline came up while my husband and I were discussing more ways to cut back on the energy bill, short of lighting candles at night and going to bed at dark.
We both grew up in homes which used a clothesline. Knowing what an energy hog an electric clothes dryers is, building a clothesline was the first thing we thought to do.
Benefits of using a Clothesline
- Savings on the energy bill
- Does not shrink your clothes
- Clean fresh smell
- Stretch your clothing budget because clothes last longer
- You get exercise and burn calories
- Indoor drying racks help humidify indoor dry winter air
- Less wrinkles in your clothes
- Faster in the summer. You can finish laundry quicker.
- The sun naturally brightens whites
- Getting outside is good for your mental health
Also See our DIY Duck Tape Clothespin Bag
How To Build A Clothesline
Building a clothesline is a one day project except for waiting on the concrete to dry when you set your posts into the ground.
Three 8 ft. landscape timbers
Four 2×4’s cut at a 45 degree angle on both ends
- 6 Clothesline Pulley’s
- 5 Line Tightener’s
- 8 Eye hook
- 4 of nuts, bolts & washes about 7″ long
- 1 bag Quikrete
- Tape Measure
- Carpenter Square
- Post Level
- Post hole diggers
Select your location. Choose a sunny spot preferably without trees. We have a lot of trees in our yard so we selected a location with the least amount of shade between trees. It also needed to be out of the way, near out fence line to leave the back yard free for the kids to play.
Determine the distance you want between poles. Dig the holes for the posts to be set into. Do not set the posts just yet.
Cut one of the 8 ft. timbers in half creating two 4 ft. posts. These will become the “T” which will attach to the two other timbers.
Install the clothesline pulley’s onto the two 4 ft. “T” posts you cut. Be sure to measure your desired distance between pulley’s. This task is easier done while still using your work bench which in our case was a couple of saw horses set up in the yard.
Create a notch in both of the remaining 8 ft. timbers for the ‘T’ will fit into.
Measure your desired distance down the post where you will cut a notch (see picture below). This notch helps to secure a better fit when you attach the “T” post.
My husband did this step using a hammer and a chisel.
Attach the “T” to the anchor post using the nuts and bolts as pictured above. (I took the picture after the project was complete. The line will not yet be installed at this step)
Using the 2 x 4’s, cut to fit, attach as bracing boards using screws.
It is time to set posts into the hole the desired depth.
I am a whopping 5 ft. 0″ tall. My sweet husband had me stand in the location we selected and raise my arms up as high as I would be able to comfortably hang clothes on the line. The cure for keeping long things from touching the ground is to drape them over the line double so they don’t drag the ground. The clothesline will be completely useless to me is I couldn’t reach it to hang the clothes out.
Nail a few wooden stakes on to brace the post prior to adding the Quikrete into the hole.
Once you have your post braced up and it is level, go ahead and prepare the Quikrete according to package directions. Add the concrete carefully so your post remains level. The concrete may take up to 2 days to set up. Do not add the clothesline until after the concrete has set up.
String the Clothesline. Those Line tighteners were wonderful because a clothesline will begin to sag a bit from time to time and those allow quick tightening.
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You may have noticed what appears to be an upside down can on the top of the clothesline posts. Those are placed there to prevent rain from rotting the posts. It’s a nice trick.
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