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The materials needed to build a cold frame are as follows:
  • 1-4' X 4' piece of " treated plywood
  • 2-8' lengths of 1"X3" lumber
  • 6-2" hinges with removable pins
  • 4-5" flat angle irons
  • 1 roll of 6 mil clear plastic
  • 36 " wood screws
  • 24 " screws
  • Staple gun
  • Drill
Start by cutting the plywood as shown above. These panels will make up the front, back, and sides of the cold frame.
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The walls of the cold frame are held together with a total of four hinges. Attach hinges to both ends of both side panels using " wood screws.
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Secure the walls of the cold frame together, again using " wood screws. You may need someone to hold the panels in place while you set the screws
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Next, cut the lumber for the top of the cold frame. You will need two 49" pieces and two 44" pieces of 1"X3" lumber. Use the flat angle irons and " screws to fasten the pieces together.
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Roll out the plastic and place the frame in the middle. Cut the plastic to size, leaving about 5" of overlapping plastic on all sides of the frame. Fold the plastic over and staple it to the inside edge of the frame.
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Now it's time to attach the top of the cold frame to the back panel. Lay the two pieces on the ground and butt them snugly up against one another. Attach the two pieces together with the last two hinges. Once the hinges are secure, remove the pins and separate the two pieces.
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When you are ready to use your cold frame, first assemble the walls. Next lay the lid on the ground. Flip the frame over onto the top of the lid so that the hinges match up, and insert the pins. Flip the cold frame back over, and it's done. The finished cold frame will prove to be a valuable tool in getting a head start on the planting season.