“ Brand: Tesco / Type: Patio Chair / Lounge „
This was a recent birthday present from my mother. My garden has had a make over recently (not a very posh one, just a complete clear up and turn over due to neglect) and in the process of doing it up we have been filling it with solar lighting, fire-pits and chimeneas. I have got to the planting out stage now and so really wanted a bench for the garden that was durable and non fussy. This one was perfectly chosen for me as it is chunky and looks rustic. It is also a bargain compared to many more lightweight benches available.
My mother got this from Tesco Direct and it arrived in five pieces which were all slotted together in a large slim box. Inside the box you get the back, the seat, a long under-seat support, and the arms. There are instructions which are pretty poor in my opinion so they were promptly discarded and it was built using logic and a prayer. There are galvanised bolts included with this, in two different sizes. All were present thank goodness. The drill holes in the bench were decently done so putting it together was not too difficult even for one person.
The bench is a two seater bench and measures 120x96x60cm. It was surprisingly quick to screw together and took around 20 minutes. It is finished/stained in a "teak colour" over an Acacia wood frame.
The staining is a little haphazard in some places under the wooden slats, giving it a slightly patchy finish but Acacia is a wood with a good visible grain so unless you look closely then this does not detract from its visual appeal.
Acacia is a hard wood, known for its durability and moisture resistance. Despite this fact I still gave it a few coats of Danish Oil as it rains a lot in Wales. Acacia has a really lovely rustic feel to the grain and colour, and I would have preferred this bench "in the raw", to appreciate the beauty of the wood. However despite the stain, it does not have that horrid orange hue that some benches suffer, and the grain is still pretty. From an environmental point of view, Acacia is a reasonable choice when using a hard wood, as it is a fast growing wood (which is the reason that it has such a lovely grain) and can be replanted and replaced relatively quickly.
The bench is well made and the wood is sanded well. There are no rough edges although the wood is very dry. I really do recommend oiling it. The bench has a little brass coloured metal plaque at the top of it which looks smart and makes it look like it is a good quality item. And it is. For the rice you are getting not a softwood but a hardwood bench, in a simple yet attractive design. The fixtures are chunky and solid and the wood is finished nicely.
Despite only being in 5 pieces and having a slim support strut under the seat, this bench is very solid and stable. Once all of the bolts have been tightened, there is no movement in the joints and it does not wobbly or feel flimsy. It is light enough to move around easily yet strong and solid. It is a very attractive piece of furniture and easily sits myself and another adult without feeling squashed.
I parked mine under the living room window next to one of the fire-pits and near to the newly dug bed. It is close to the main solar lighting and the gorgeous grape vine that I have growing up the fence so it is a nice place to sit. My garden is also a sun trap so it gets lots of sun (when the weather bothers to give us sun). I have invested in a couple of cushions that can be left outside in all weathers, not because the bench is uncomfortable, but because I am old and achy.
There is plenty of wood used in making this bench and the gaps between the struts are small. This makes it less likely that I will drop my baccy, phone or tablet as I enjoy the sun. The seat is wipe down and easy to keep clean. Now it has been oiled a few times, the wood has become really soft and smooth and there is no chance of splinters due to the workmanship. Despite being a supermarket bench, it is surprisingly good quality and great value for money.
This bench will last well if you look after the wood...
Hardwood furniture should always be oiled, especially if it is to live outside. Even with a cover, extremes of temperature and rain can damage wood and cause it to split and warp. I use Danish oil on hard wood as it is a very protective oil. Danish oil dries quickly and this bench was so dry that the oil disappeared immediately. I gave the bench 3 coats with a paintbrush and then polished it all over with a generous amount of home made beeswax polish. As the weather turns I will give it a light sand down and then repeat the oil/wax process before covering it over. It is not necessary to be as thorough as I am, but if you do not oil the wood you are taking a very big risk in terms of your furniture being useless after a few years.
Hardwood can be painted, limewashed or stained but I am not a fan of painted wood. If looked after then this bench should last a very long time as Acacia is a brilliant wood.
Heritage Home and Garden supply this bench to Tesco Direct and it comes from them It costs £59.99 at the moment which is a steal for a hardwood bench. This is a well made item and it suits my garden. I am very happy with it and it fully deserves 5 stars.
WHAT IS IT?
A 2 seating bench for the garden that is available only from Tesco.
ASSEMBLING THE BENCH
This bench comes flat packed in a very heavy box, it is small enough to go in your car boot but if you buy it from www.tesco.com/direct you can have it delivered to your home so that you do not have to carry it. The bench is not in very many pieces and it is very easy to see how to put it together even without looking at the instructions, my husband put it together with my help and we did not have to look at the instructions at all apart from to see what screws had to be used. The instructions are in pictures so you cannot make a mistake. It took us less than one hour to make the bench and it was very easy to do.
WHAT I THINK
I am very happy with our bench and I sit on it every day when I am in the garden with the children. We bought our bench in March and it has been in the garden since then when it has snowed, rained and been sunny also. The wood is acacia and that is hardy wood so it has not been damaged even in the extremes of temperature in an English spring time.
It is strong and none of the places where the wood joins are weak or wobbly, there were not very many screws to assemble it so I was shocked that the quality and strength is so good. The seat is big enough for 2 people who are a normal size to sit on it together but I think that 2 fat people would not be able to sit down in it comfortably without the arms of the bench digging into them.
I think it is comfortable to sit on because the wood is smooth, it gets very hot in the sunlight so I sometimes use a blanket to drape over it before me or the children sit down. The wood does not feel hard on our backsides when we are sitting down but my daughter brings a cushion always because she dislikes the feeling on the wood on her legs when she is wearing shorts or a dress.
The bench is 1.2 metres long and 96cm high so that is average for this style of 2 seat bench, I think it is a pity that the arms of the bench are very thin and I would like for them to be thicker so that I could put down my cup of tea or phone on the arm of the bench while I am busy, you have to be careful also that when you put something on the seat it can drop through the gaps between the slats in the bench because they are wide.
I paid £60 for this bench and that was the cheapest one I could find when I was looking at benches to buy for my garden. I thought it might not be a very good bench for such a low price but we all like it very much and I think that it is going to last for a long time so has been value for us.
5 Dooyoo Stars.