Building a Kids Jungle Gym in Your Backyard

Building a jungle gym for your children can be a wonderful gift for them, and also something that gets them out of the house. Unfortunately, however, the costs of building one can be very expensive, especially when, as is normally the case, parents get a professional to do the job for them. However, if you are comfortable and experienced with DIY, there is no reason why you can’t build a backyard jungle gym yourself. There are various kits available, and assembling them is more time-consuming than difficult. Doing it this way, you can also get a far more customized result.

Tools and Materials Needed:

  • Jungle gym sets
  • Measuring tape
  • Everyday DIY tools
  • Large, flat surface
  • Wood stain or metal paint 

Step 1 – Design the Layout

Once you have got a good idea of the jungle gym you want to build, create a detailed and accurate plan on graph paper. Decide on your budget as well, and try to stick to it, as it is easy to go far over. Keep in mind that you will also need to buy parts which are appropriate for outdoor installation. Manufacturers make both indoor and outdoor jungle gym kits. Regardless of this, the materials used will either be wood or metal. Wood looks more traditional and is preferred by many, but metal is more durable and stronger. For outdoor jungle gyms, woods used will normally be redwood or cedar as this is highly durable against extreme weather and rot.

When you have the layout of the climbing frames, swings and other accessories of the jungle gym accurately drawn out, you are ready to purchase the parts and start assembling them.

Step 2 – Assemble the Parts

The jungle gym kits that you buy will be ready made and ready to assemble. The kit should include everything required to assemble each component, including all the nuts and bolts and any accessories. There should be diagrams explaining how to assemble everything. You will likely need someone to help you, as some of the components can be heavy and large. The tools you need will generally include a cordless electric drill, a spirit level and a hammer. Of course, if you are starting from scratch rather than assembling a pre-made kit, you will need a lot more tools as well as time.

Step 3 – Check all of the Connections

It is very important to thoroughly check the entire installation after it has been assembled. Make certain that all of the nuts and bolts are tightly secured and that everything is level. Do this before allowing children to play in it.

Step 4 – Protecting the Wood

If your jungle gym is constructed from wood, the surface should be treated with an appropriate outdoor protective wood stain. 2 coats may be needed, which will need to be left to dry for an adequate time. The wood preservative or stain used will help to protect the parts from termite damage and bad weather.