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How to make a metal obelisk

You will need

  • Piece of timber measuring 15cm high x 15cm wide x 5cm deep for the base
  • Six 1 metre-long, 8mm diameter zinc thread rods
  • 30m of 1.5mm galvanised garden wire
  • 5m of 1mm galvanised garden wire
  • Pliers to cut the wire
  • Drill and 8mm drill bit
Do it: all year round
Takes just: 1 afternoon

Overview

Toby Buckland shows how to make a plant climbing frame that doubles as a focal point with this simple obelisk, using galvanised garden wire and metal rods.

Create an interesting shape by bending the rods and securing them in place with the wire. The structure can be as small or tall as you like, although a minimum of about 1m high is best for the most lightweight climbers. If you plan to extend the height beyond this, then increase the depth of the supporting timber base.


How to do it

1Mark a circle of 14cm diameter onto the timber square. Drill six 8mm wide holes at equal distances around the circle (one for each rod).


Bending thread rod

2Gently bend the rods near their centre to create a curving effect and tweak them until they're all the same (try bending them over the edge of an old tabletop to give you more control).


Pushing rods into timber

3Push the rods into the holes in the timber and position them so they curve outwards.


Creating wire ring

4To secure the tops, weave a ring of garden wire around them, approximately 2cm thick, to the same diameter as the top of the obelisk.


5Push the wire ring over the ends of the rods to make a rim and bind it in place with 1mm wire. Add rings at regular intervals down the structure and attach with more wire.


Adam's tip

For even greater impact, use this obelisk as a garden sculpture, without planting any climber up it, to keep its lines clear and visible.


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