build own playground slide?

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Old 08-29-12, 11:07 PM
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build own playground slide?

I am interested in building a slide from the second story of my barn and need some suggestions as to what to build the chute out of.

I was considering HDF, MDF or the like but am unsure of whether or not i could mold it to curve at the bottom of the slide. some laminate flooring could be simple but not sure i could get it to bend.

how about the material that is similar to the toe-kick on cabinets? that would bend, but is it available in larger sheets?

any other suggestions?
 
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Old 08-30-12, 06:48 AM
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Slide

Will the slide be indoors or outdoors? The answer will determine what materials are suitable.
 
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Old 08-30-12, 06:51 AM
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I think moisture will be a problem with MDF or similar material outside. Most anything can be curved though. You may have to use a couple layers of thinner material instead of one thicker layer.

One of the better slide materials I've seen is large diameter plastic drain piping that has a smooth interior.



 
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Old 08-30-12, 06:54 AM
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Not what you asked about but as a child my father worked for an insurance company and my mother for a personal injury law firm so my thoughts run to liability pretty quickly - have you thought out how you're going to keep kids from getting hurt on something so high off the ground?
 
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Old 08-30-12, 07:55 AM
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The drain pipe that Pilot Dane suggested would be probably the best material I could consider for surviving the elements, and being reasonably safe. Hard to fall out of an enclosed slide.

To cover mitch17's concerns, how are you planning on making the climb to the top safe?

As for the slide, you'll need to figure out how fast the child may travel down the slide. You might have to level the slide off at the bottom for some length to help reduce the exiting speed.
Also, consider grounding the slide. This should help reduce or eliminate the static charge built up from the friction.
 
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Old 08-30-12, 09:15 AM
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that would work great,but not sure about obtaining that pipe, and its cost. the slide will be inside, so fewer concerns. slide will go from the loft to floor. of course i'll build it safe.
 
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Old 08-30-12, 09:23 AM
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You could check with your local building supply store. I know in our farming town, they have or can order these type of items.

Just don't forget to ground it.
Our local park is not grounded and everyone leaves there fully charged and with bad hair.
 
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Old 08-30-12, 09:49 AM
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Yeah, my daughter and I play a game at playgrounds - she rides down the slide and I stand next to it so she can shock me on the way down. Lots of static on slides these days.
 
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Old 08-30-12, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by mitch17
Yeah, my daughter and I play a game at playgrounds - she rides down the slide and I stand next to it so she can shock me on the way down. Lots of static on slides these days.
Our local park (at the elementary school) in our small town was not grounded and with all the plastic in these parks, was brutal for static.
A buddy and I installed a short (homemade) grounding rod and that ended most of the static issues.
 
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Old 08-30-12, 04:51 PM
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Our local park (at the elementary school) in our small town was not grounded and with all the plastic in these parks, was brutal for static.
A buddy and I installed a short (homemade) grounding rod and that ended most of the static issues.
Really? That worked? How was it connected? I figured it would be impossible to ground those things. Every playground I have been to with my child has been terrible with shocks. I hate the new plastic stuff.
 
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Old 08-30-12, 06:25 PM
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Black plastic is usually more conductive because of the carbon used to color it so it can have less static problems. The pretty colored stuff that will make your hair stand on end.
 
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Old 08-31-12, 08:49 AM
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"The pretty colored stuff that will make your hair stand on end"

Literally - I have a couple pictures of my daughter's hair doing just that as she comes off the slide.
 
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Old 08-31-12, 09:12 AM
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drooplug,

It didn't take care of all the static, but sure did reduce it.
The park assembly was installed a year or so ago and was brutal for static. We connected the rod to an unused bolt on one of the support poles. Works fairly well.
A propper rod might actually work better, but that is what we used.
 
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