Design & DIY

This cottager carved a wildlife tribute on his ATV shed

photo of an ATV shed with a deer carved onto the doors Photo by Bob Hayward

“It’s not uncommon to see wildlife such as foxes, bears, and even moose near the cottage,” says Bob Hayward, who has cottaged on Salerno Lake, Ont., since 2012. So when he set out to build a shed for his ATVs last winter, he looked to his surroundings for inspiration. “This was my tribute to the natural environment,” he says.

Needing a large, level surface to work from, and to protect his project while it was in progress, Bob built the doors out of 5⁄4-inch pressure-treated pine at home on his basement pool table. After sketching the deer onto graph paper, he transposed it onto the shed doors using chalk and string. He then used a Dremel tool to carve the image and a chipping tool to deepen the grooves. He finished it off with an Epifanes marine varnish to protect it from the elements and then transported the shed doors outside—which was no easy feat. Negotiating his basement’s curved landing, Bob carefully manoeuvred the doors up and down until he could squeeze them out through the tight space. “We only had one inch to spare,” he says. The weight of the doors also added to the challenge—Bob used three sets of iron hinges to securely attach the door to the 12-by-7 foot shed. “Next time, I would probably use a fence board, which is thinner,” he says.

While the project took longer than Bob had originally anticipated—60 hours spread out over three weeks—he’s happy with the outcome. “I got a lot of enjoyment from carving the design and playing around with the depth and shadows of the image,” he says. As for his next project? He plans to carve bears and moose into a pair of deer antlers that he picked up at a garage sale.

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