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16 Hand-Selected Reader Projects from The Family Handyman

Ranging in size, difficulty and design, these 16 reader projects are as unique as the DIYers who built them.

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Outdoor Wood-Fired OvenPhoto: Courtesy of John White

Outdoor Wood-Fired Oven

Inspired by foreign exchange students that his family hosted, reader John White built this professional-looking wood-fired oven in his backyard. Then he needed to learn how to bake!
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Stylish Garden FencePhoto: Courtesy of Mick Monahan

Stylish Garden Fence

Wanting more out of his critter-proof fencing, reader Mick Monahan built a charming white fence first; then he added the nylon garden netting to the inside. It looks great and does the job of keeping pests out of his garden.
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Open-Fire Brick Barbecue BarPhoto: Courtesy of John Kubicki

Open-Fire Brick Barbecue Bar

With no brick-laying experience, reader John Kubicki built a dream outdoor kitchen featuring an open-fire barbecue, a mini-fridge, a beautiful patio, built-in bench and more.
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In-Wall Kitchen CabinetsPhoto: Courtesy of Vern Schleyer

In-Wall Kitchen Cabinets

Reader Vern Schleyer didn’t have enough room in his kitchen for more cabinets, so he built them into the wall. Click here to find out how he did it.
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Backyard Stone FireplacePhoto: Courtesy of John Golock

Backyard Stone Fireplace

Reader John Golock built an impressive stone fireplace himself. Bet you can’t tell that it was his first attempt at a masonry project—ever!
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Hidden Staircase DrawerPhoto: Courtesy of Mark Maixner

Hidden Staircase Drawer

Oh the possibilities! Check out this awesome hidden drawer that reader Mark Maixner built into his staircase. Think of all of the storage space you could harness with this project!
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Wall Teardown Hidden FireplacePhoto: Courtesy of Gary Grant

Wall Teardown Hidden Fireplace

With demolition tasks, you never know what you may find. For reader Gary Grant, it was this beautiful old fireplace. Though it was no longer function, Gary uncovered it and incorporated it into his home’s décor.
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Garden Tractor Made of Junkyard PartsPhoto: Courtesy of Keith Rider

Garden Tractor Made of Junkyard Parts

Reader Keith Rider scoured the local junkyard for months before planning and executing this fully functional (and definitely one-of-a-kind) lawn tractor using the parts that he found.
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Homegrown PlayhousePhoto: Courtesy of Sam Wiza

Homegrown Playhouse

Reader Sam Wiza built this special playhouse for his grandchildren using lumber that he felled and milled himself. We think that’s incredibly impressive!
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Above-Cabinet Wine RackPhoto: Courtesy of Michael Hubbs

Above-Cabinet Wine Rack

Making use of unused cabinets above his fridge, reader Michael Hubbs built a custom wine rack in the space. He cut perfect holes in the cabinet doors and a supporting board inside.
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Patio and PergolaPhoto: Courtesy of Michael McGuire

Patio and Pergola

To save some serious cash, reader Michael McGuire decided to DIY his patio and pergola project. We think he did a standup job, and surely learned a thing or two along the way.
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Garage Doors in DisguisePhoto: Courtesy of Joe Hawkins

Garage Doors in Disguise

Simply adding some plywood, cedar boards and decorative framework, reader Joe Hawkins upgraded his garage doors tremendously.
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Unique Barbecue and SmokerPhoto: Courtesy of Dave Upton

Unique Barbecue and Smoker

This handcrafted smoker isn’t something you see every day—and that’s what makes it so great! Reader Dave Upton built this smoker to look like a train.
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Elevated Vegetable Garden PlanterPhoto: Courtesy of Jan Ryan

Elevated Vegetable Garden Planter

Reader Jan Ryan made her life as a gardener ten times better by building a raised planting table. Now it’s so much easier to tend to her delicious veggies and herbs.
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Massive Backyard Stone FireplacePhoto: Courtesy of David Peyton

Massive Backyard Stone Fireplace

Reader David Peyton crafted this massive backyard fireplace by hand, using 15 tons of assorted stones, concrete block and firebrick. Its rustic look suits the setting in David’s backyard.