What are the different ways to dismantle a pallet?

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It is possible to make very nice furniture with pallets, you can do it alone, you just need to apply the right methods and have the right equipment. However, before working with a pallet, it is mandatory to disassemble it and this step can be difficult. In this article, we will present you with some tips to facilitate the disassembly of a pallet.

Pallet disassembly
Pallet disassembly

How to choose the right pallet to dismantle?

Before making a piece of furniture or an object from a pallet, it is important to check some details such as the condition of it, make sure you have a pallet that is not too damaged and does not have broken slats. Preferably choose an uncolored pallet with raw wood, if you want a rustic style, there is no need to modify it, otherwise, you can paint it any color you want. Also check the wood knots, because they are not easy to work with and can weaken the wood. If the pallet has a lot of stains, they can be a problem when you paint it, they may show through and it’s not very pretty. Avoid pallets with too many nails, because in some cases, we find pallets that have been reused several times, and therefore contain many nails, it would be better to remove them. In addition, a pallet is made up of different parts including:

  • the skids which are on the ground ;
  • the crosspieces ;
  • the dice that are between the footings and the crosspieces;
  • the planks.

Dismantling a pallet with a crowbar or a jigsaw

The most classic method is to dismantle with a crowbar. Generally, it is with this practice that we begin to disassemble. All you need is a crowbar and a strong hammer to lift the boards and remove the nails that are in them. This technique is still tiring, because you have to use your strength and force on the boards to lift them, there will surely be a lot of scrap wood.

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As for dismantling with a jigsaw, this is the fastest and cleanest method available. Indeed, if you are in a hurry, this is the ideal technique for you. However, it has its drawbacks, as you will get shorter boards. We know that the boards of a pallet are held together by fastening points, when one of the points is removed, the boards become removable, which will create a gap in the whole pallet and especially at the level of the nails and will make them easy to remove. So this is how you do it with a jigsaw, but if you have other choices and are not in a big hurry, it would be better to avoid it.

Dismantling a pallet with a sabre saw or multi-tool

Dismantling with a sabre saw is the same principle as with a jigsaw, but it is even faster. The process is done in demolition mode. You just need the right blade and you can remove the nails directly. However, the cut is often not very clean, since it is done in a hurry and the wood will be abused. So if you like to have a meticulous and precise work, this method is not adapted to you. Otherwise, the last step is to leave the nails in place, not to remove them, but to cut them. This is a surgical method where you need to use a multipurpose tool with a good metal blade that will be used to cut the nails by inserting it between the pieces of wood and leave the rest of the nails inside to avoid damaging the wood, this method could even give a raw style to your wood that could add more design.

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