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How to Build a Wooden Ladder: Step-by-Step Guide

Do you want to know how to build a wooden ladder? Whatever the case may be, wood has always been an important building element. Wood provides a robust, and long-lasting basis for everything from chairs to tables to flooring. Furthermore, virtually all of the key items we use on a daily basis are made of wood, including ladders!

Who doesn’t desire or require a ladder in their home? It is one of the most flexible, effective, and helpful tools and equipment, as well as one of the safest. Furthermore, it allows you to access high places more easily while reducing the danger of an accident.

Ladders may be rather expensive, especially if you want the best quality. Also, if you’re looking for step ladders, the cost rises. Did you know, though, that you can easily construct a wooden step ladder at home for less than $20?

You certainly can! You can easily DIY one with a little amount of effort, motivation, and some basic equipment and supplies. Do you want to know how? We’ve included step-by-step instructions in this post to assist you in conquering the task with ease! Continue reading to find out what happens next!

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What You Should Know About Making Ladders

It is necessary to get information on a certain subject before beginning something new. Similarly, before you build a ladder, you should conduct some study on the materials and tools you’ll need.


Although a ladder may be built of various materials such as aluminum, steel, fiberglass, and even plastic, I will only cover wooden ladders here because it is almost difficult to make one yourself from the other materials described above.

Hardwoods such as Mahogany, Oak, Alder, Beech, and Hickory are commonly used to construct a wooden ladder. You may use softwoods like Cedar, Spruce, or Pine for the DIY ones. However, I would propose using hardwood cedar boards rather than pine since the cedar would give your ladder a pastoral feel. It is important to select the right kind of wood since the materials used in the ladder determine both your safety and its longevity.


Another crucial thing to consider while building a ladder is its height. Despite the fact that a ladder can be any length, it is usually suggested that it be no longer than 12 feet. In the case of DIY ladders, a length of 6-10 feet is recommended. However, in this post, I will teach you how to build a 12 foot wooden ladder. If you want to build a smaller one, you will need to make some changes.


If you intend to build a permanent ladder for tree homes, it is critical to position the ladder at a certain angle. The correct alignment will assure the users’ safety while also providing comfort to their legs and allowing them to climb with ease.

A big measuring instrument, such as a level or a protractor, can be used to find the needed angle. Furthermore, there are several applications available for mobile phones that may help you identify the best angle to put your ladder. To calculate the angle, put a long wooden slab that extends from the lower ground to the upper platform. The angle is then measured twice, first by placing the level or protractor on the hardwood slab at the upper platform and subsequently near the bottom. Using this approach, you may determine the precise angle at which the ladder should be installed.

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What You Will Need

After gathering information, the next step is to obtain the equipment and materials needed to construct a ladder on your own. The following is a list of the items:

  • Several pieces of two by four wooden boards.
  • Tube of Glue that is suitable for wood.
  • Table saw.
  • Drilling machine.
  • Marker pen.
  • Paint with brushes.

Step-by-step on How to Build a Wooden Ladder

Step 1: Cutting the Wood

The first step is cutting the woods in your desired size. After all, wood constitutes the entire and primary base of the step ladder. A saw will be required to cut the wooden ladder steps. Begin cutting the wooden boards with the saw to the required size and pattern. Take the router and start cutting the wood for the remaining sections.

First, you’ll need to work on the ladder’s height and side support. Make sure that the planks are trimmed to the height that you want. You’ll need four identically sized hardwood boards for the back and sides. Furthermore, the number of steps required is determined by the height of the ladder. Furthermore, all of the stages should be the same size and dimensions.

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How to Build a Wooden Ladder-step-2

Step 2: Apply Paint or Stain

To protect the floor or other work surface from paint spills, drape plastic sheeting over it. Cover the plastic sheeting with a canvas drop cloth or contractor’s paper. The plastic prevents the paint from seeping through to the floor, while the canvas offers a non-slip surface and aids in the containment of paint spills.

Put on your goggles and rubber gloves. To make a TSP solution, combine it with warm water in the amounts advised by the manufacturer. Dip a cloth in water, wring it out, then wipe down the wood to remove any oils, dirt, and grime. Rinse the area well with warm water and a clean towel. Allow the wood to completely dry.

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Step 3: Drill Holes

On each 2- x 2-inch x 6-foot choice pine board, several holes 12 inches apart. Pre-drill a hole for each using the 1/8-inch drill bit. Make sure that the hole extends all the way through the board.

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Step 4: Drill Holes in All the Rungs

Use the holes you just drilled as guidelines to ensure that each rung has aligned holes.

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Step 5: Attach Everything

After you’ve completed all of the drillings, you’ll need to join the sides and steps together. Begin by drilling holes in the side supports. Then, screw the steps into these holes. Attach the rear support and foundation once you’ve finished with the sides and steps.

We would recommend using a lot of screws and nails for added durability. In this manner, your step ladder will be both robust and safe. The entire procedure may appear complex, but it is pretty simple. Simply connect all of the supports one at a time to build the ladder!

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Safety Tips When Using a Wooden Ladder

Ladders are necessary tools in many professions and homes. But much more crucial than the use of a ladder is the ability to use it securely. Carelessness or horseplaying on a ladder might result in serious injury or death. These are the seven most important ladder safety precautions you should be aware of.

Keep an eye on your feet

The quality of a ladder’s feet must be considered. A major accident might occur when working on a ladder if the rubber becomes old and ripped. It’s possible that you won’t notice you need to replace the feet until it’s too late. Take a peek at the feet the next time you’re getting ready to construct a ladder. Examine the area to see whether there is any damage. Even if it appears to be minor, you should replace the feet.

Keep an eye on the weather

Storms and other severe weather indicate that you should be indoors and not on a ladder. You may appear to be able to manage a breeze, but ladders are more sensitive than you believe. There’s no use in putting yourself in danger only to finish a project. When planning tasks that involve the use of a ladder, check the weather forecast for clear, wind-free days.

Double-check that all of the parts are present

On a ladder, there is no such thing as a throwaway part. To avoid damage, every part of it must remain intact. Do not climb the ladder if there is any evidence of missing nails or other parts. Feel the rungs of the ladder to determine whether they are loose in any way before using it. If your ladder is lacking enough parts, you should consider replacing it.

Slow down

Even the strongest ladders cannot withstand sudden movements. Take care when using your ladder. Before making any kind of progress on your ladder, think it through and evaluate the risks. Avoid putting too much weight on one side of the ladder or moving up and down the rungs haphazardly. There is simply no reason to hurry a ladder-related project. If you’re using a ladder to help someone else, speak up if you notice them going too quickly.

Final Thoughts

Congratulations on successfully and meticulously completing all of the stages! You’re finished! You now have a wooden ladder that you built with your own hands and labor. Just start using it right now and get your work done! We hope that you enjoyed the above article. You can ask any question or leaving a suggestion on the comment section. Kindly like and share our post if it was helpful to you.

Lisa J. Thompson

Hello, my name is Lisa Thompson and I’m the Founder of Daily Home Insider, your go-to resource for all things home security and home improvement. In this day and age, security should be your top priority, and that’s exactly why my dedicated team of writers and I offer reliable information pertaining to gun storage, home safes, and so much more. When I’m not running the blog, I enjoy gardening and homesteading. As an avid nature lover, I also love going on camping trips. Currently, I happily reside in the heart of Los Angeles.

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