Monday, August 16, 2010

Redwood Hot Tub/Planter...or What Were We Thinking?

I typically use Freecycle to get rid of items that are no longer of use around our home. Rarely do I answer an offer for an item, unless it is for picking figs.

But every last vestige of reason left me when I saw an offer for an old redwood hot tub. The gentleman who posted it was clear that the tub was no longer fit to be a hot tub, but it might make for a good rain barrel or pond. He said it was still holding water.

I clung to that fact that it still held water. I was hoping with every aching muscle in my body that the tub might be able to be restored to its former glory.

And I held to that hope even as we cut down the tub to remove the dry-rotted wood at the top.

Eric and crew trundled it up into his truck, the tub (and my restoration aspirations) crumbling a bit with each turn. We made the sixteen mile drive home.

As we unloaded it from the truck, a stave completely crumbled into dust dashing all hopes of the tub ever holding water again. We moved to one of our contingency plans and rolled it to the lower yard where it now is a decaying planter bed.

We replaced the broken stave with some of the scraps that were cut off earlier. Eric and I think it has about a two year life as a planter bed...then back to dust. The entire drill now has me obsessed with creating a soaker tub at Camp Ramshackle. Although the red cedar tubs are beautiful, I think the stock tank is more within our price range.


  1. From a complete stranger - we picked up a used 4-person Softub off Craigslist for $500. A splurge for us, but we used it almost every night during the winter and it was fantastic. It plugs into a standard outlet.

  2. Actually, I think I like the stock tank better, but then I have a soft spot for galvanized stuff. It would last a lot longer too.

    I think with some careful planning, you could make the galvanized tub part of the whole design and make it look pretty cool.

  3. Thanks for the tip, colleeeen. I had not heard of Softubs prior.

    Paula, there was a picture of a very cool galvanized hot tub in Dwell (June issue?). A couple living in the desert had set it into the rock of their natural landscape & even insulated it. I'm all for a plain galvanized tub too. The kids' tubs are too small for me to stretch out my legs.

  4. Dakota shares your dream of owning a soaking tub. He's been planning one for us for years. I think we're leaning towards a galvanized stock tank as well, although Dakota does have a pretty amazing book on how to make your own redwood tub, complete with 70s-era photo illustrations of bearded dudes and their long-haired ladies having a soak.


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