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Topic: Backyard Playset - image heavy  (Read 15499 times)
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sugarbeth
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« on: July 11, 2007 09:16:22 AM »

This is what happens when craftsters get old and have a bunch of power tools - just a warning! Smiley

This is a project from last summer. I thought I should finally get around to documenting it. It was really satisfying to build from scratch. A playset this size (and it is pretty big) would be well over $4000 from someplace like Rainbow or Backyard Adventures.

I made the playhouse part of it an homage to our first house which was painted this color. The swings and ladder hardware and accessories were from byoswingset.com. The slide and swing arm braces were from one of the big hardware stores. The lumber is from Dunn lumber - a local lumber store here. I HIGHLY recommend getting your lumber from your local lumber yard rather than Home Depot, Lowe's etc. The lumber yard will be cheaper, delivery will likely be free (or cheap), and you just drive through and they load up your car. It's awesome.

Power tools I used: Drill, circular saw, power sander, jig saw, miter saw.

In addition to lumber you need: about 100 3/8x3" galvanized lag bolts + washers, 5-6 lbs of decking screws (2" I think), various strongtie braces.

I put a shingled roof on, but if I had to do it over, I would just make a simple roof using cedar siding.

The area was first cleared and leveled, then we put down a layer of weedblocker fabric. Built the structure, and then made an enclosure for the woodchips out of 2x8 treated lumber. I think there's something like 6-8 sq yards of wood play chips in there.

My original sketch. The plans changed somewhat as I forgoed the monkey bars and the peepholes in the house panels.



I labeled a bunch of pictures with the dimensions of the lumber that was used. Some of the lengths might be approximate. But basically, the structure is based on the 4 4x4x10' support posts. The deck is 5' off the ground. The 2x6x5' horizontal supports do most of the work holding it all together. In the pics, you can't see the 2x6's that are at the base since they are covered in wood chips, but refer to the sketch for that.

It is all held together with 3/8x3" galvanized lag bolts. I would first make a recess for the bolt head +washer with a 1" forstner bit on the drill, then pre-drill a hole for the lag bolt. There was a lot of cranking bolts on in this project!



















Anyhoo, the point of my story is this: Just because you are a girl, it doesn't mean that you can't build big cool things out of wood. But do have your man do the heavy lifting parts. Wink
« Last Edit: April 02, 2010 08:35:19 PM by jungrrl - Reason: fixed a coding issue » THIS ROCKS   Logged

Beth
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« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2007 09:30:23 AM »

THAT IS AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How long did it take you to build this?!
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« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2007 09:50:11 AM »

having had a temp job at a backyard playset (childlife) store, I can assure you that it would have been at least $4k - crazy

that's the way to do it - way to go!

i'm sure the kids will love it for a long time (then you can sell it!)

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BeaG
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« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2007 10:02:20 AM »

What an amazing job!
Those kids are so lucky to have you as their mother.
BeaG
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sugarbeth
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« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2007 10:09:55 AM »

THAT IS AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How long did it take you to build this?!

Thanks! It took me about 3 weeks of June for the main structure, and a little bit longer for the roof. But first there was the prep work - I had to remove a couple of ugly trees, and move some shrubs, level the dirt. And then build the perimeter too. It would've been faster if I didn't have the kids around - but then I wouldn't have been building that thing in the first place - lol. Smiley I would just work on it here and there when they were occupied doing something else. Most of the work was cutting the wood, sanding the ends (oh god, sooo much sanding), predrilling the holes and then staining. All of that could be done before assembly. So that made it easy to do on my own while dealing with the kids too.
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Beth
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« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2007 10:54:37 AM »

That is just incredible..
I wish my husband were good with woodwork.. he didn't get that gene from his father, who is handy.

Once, before we were married, my husband made a bathouse...  Okay. We dont' talk about the bathouse too often - he made it with like 3/4" plywood - it was the heaviest bathouse in the history of bathouses...

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« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2007 10:55:57 AM »

That is so awesome! Are there any pictures of the full structure?
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« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2007 11:27:02 AM »

That is so great!

You must have the most popular back yard in the neighborhood.
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Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what's going to happen next. Delicious Ambiguity. - Gilda Radner
BeaG
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Hi from Belgium!


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« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2007 11:31:13 AM »

That is just incredible..
I wish my husband were good with woodwork.. he didn't get that gene from his father, who is handy.

This reply made me laugh.
Did you read the initial post? Woman can do these kind of things too, you know?
Lol,
BeaG
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« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2007 11:40:36 AM »

Wow... I'm in complete awe.  So if you don't mind me asking, what was the total cost of the project when all was said and done?  It looks so professional! I bow to your mad, mad skills.
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Wonderfully Awkward - my blog http://www.bclef.com
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