How to Build a Spiral Slide for Your Backyard Playground
One of the most popular structures in playgrounds for kids is the spiral slide. This exciting addition to your backyard playground will give your children hours of fun play, promoting creativity, reduction of stress, physical activity and socializing skills.
The spiral slide is a stimulating apparatus mostly used by older children. These slides come in many shapes and dimensions. Purchasing specialized kits, using a little know-how and with some assistance of a second person, you can build one yourself. Follow these steps:
Step 1 – Choosing Site and Plans
Decide the location and style of your spiral slide wisely and take the dimensions. The site where the slide will be built needs to be level for more stability and include a “fall zone” for safety. Also purchase shock absorbing materials. When you buy your spiral slide you can find everything you need in specialized stores, such as pre-cut wood, accessories and the building plan. Buy the design kit separate from the wood, which needs to be cut to the size needed.
Step 2 – Wood Selection and Preparation
The most common types of wood used for this type of equipment are pine, redwood and cedar. The southern yellow pine is recommended since it is the most effective, durable and decay resistant to the outdoors elements and general wear and tear. Cut the wood on the spiral slide plan, sand it and apply a primer. Finally paint it in the color of your choice and set aside to dry.
Step 3 – Supporting Posts
Cut thick 3-by-4 wooden posts. Then measure and mark the height of the posts from the ground to the platform at the top. Add 3 feet for the foundation. With the power saw, cut four identical wooden posts for the platform. Mark the 4 posts on the ground and dig 3 feet by 3 feet holes in the ground. Use a hole digger or a sharp shovel for this task.
Step 4 – Building the Structure
Pour 5 inches of fine gravel in the holes and place the posts. Secure each post and add support by screwing wooden braces. Put in fast-setting concrete around the bases of the poles, leaving some space to cover later with soil. Let the concrete dry for 6 hours. Next attach horizontal 2-by-4 wooden elements around each post to connect them, creating a ring that makes the built structure stable.
Step 5 – Completing the Spiral Slide
Once the spiral slide is completely dry, you can mount it on the supporting structure. Work precisely as indicated in the kit and use the screws provided with it. Install a small ladder and little plastic handles on the hand rail above the ladder. Add a metal tube at the top of the hole above the slide itself so the child can hold onto it before going down.
When building a slide, always think of the child’s safety. Check all nuts and bolts before usage. Parents should also teach the kids how to avoid accidents.