Instructions needed to build A-frame swing set

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Sunny Side Up, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    I hope it's all right to post this question here, I'm hoping to get advice from all you construction experts on this. I'm a mom who wants to build a good, large, sturdy, basic A-frame to hang 3 swings for my boys. My oldest, at 14, is already 6 feet tall, so I'd like it to be big enough to allow him to enjoy swinging along with his brothers.

    I bought 4 10' 4X4 posts for the legs, will those be long enough? Should I exchange them for 12'? I know I'll also need some 2X4 pieces to make the cross-piece of the A.

    I bought another 10' 4X4 post for the top. Will that be long enough to hang 3 swings from? Should I get a 12' one instead? Will it warp or sag some day? Should I use a different cut of wood instead?

    My biggest question is how do I attatch the top to the legs? Should I attatch the end of the top piece to the legs or leave a foot or two hanging over? I know there are several different methods I could use, metal brackets, wood braces, sturdy bolts, & others. I want to make it strong & secure, and very safe for lots of use. If you could post close-up pix of your set, I'd appreciate it. Thank you!
  2. Emzyyy

    Emzyyy Runs with Deer

    Jul 14, 2008
    Derby Kansas
    Yes, I wanna build a a-frame chicken coop. They have a "A Frame" on here on coop designs on Medium Coops, Im guessing it would work the same for a swing set.
  3. jvls1942

    jvls1942 Chicken Obsessed

    Oct 16, 2008
    first off a 4x4 will either twist or sag for the cross piece. I would use two 2x6's spiked together and set on edge..

    make your A frame pieces long enough so that you can bury the ends into the ground to prevent the corners from lifting when the kids swing high.. (boys will try to go over the bar) BTW it is possible and we did it..

    a long drill bit and at least 3/8" bolts are a must for the strength you are looking for..

    and do not forget to add side sway supports at the top beam..

    go to a local park and measure up a swing set for swing spacing and height etc..
  4. WVFarmgirl

    WVFarmgirl Out Of The Brooder

    Dec 19, 2008
    Farmington, WV
    I'll ask my dad in the morning when I give him a call, he build us a homemade swing set using treated 4x4's when I was born, I'm 25. And even though the swings themselves have been replace a few times, that swingset is standing strong... probably waiting for the next set of grandkids to come along and have a ride. [​IMG]
  5. BirdBrain

    BirdBrain Prefers Frozen Tail Feathers

    May 7, 2007
    You can go to Lowes (and probably Home Depot) and get the metal braces for swing sets. These usually come in the prepackaged sets, but you can but the parts separately. The piece I am talking about connects the uprights to the cross beam.
  6. beak

    beak On vacation

    Dec 12, 2008
    Kiowa, Colorado
    The strongest setup I've ever seen was at a public playground. They used 4 pole type fence poles for the uprights. They were 10-12 ft long and were 8" going to 6" at the top. They They made a lopsided x with the poles and cut notches at the intersection for the poles to fit together. Then they used a 3/4" bolt that was long enough to go through both poles with a washer under the head and the nut on the other end. For the top they just lid the same kind of pole over the top in the cradles formed by the x. They secured them with long 1/2" lag bolts. You can buy the swings and some heavy duty mounts to attach to the top pole at Lowes or Home Depot. If you decide to use 4x4's use 2 2x8's bolted together at the top. You can span about 10 ' with that. When the kids swing you can see the upper beam flex. 2 heavy kids swinging in unison instead of opposite ways will flex a single beam too much. The thought of the board breaking while at the top of an arc is scary. Especially if there is a fence the kid can break their back on. I have a swing with 4x4's cemented in the ground. One of the 4x4's has a crack in it. Since I cemented it in I can't replace it very easily. I intend to tear the whole thing down and build a swing made like the one at the park. It will last for my grand kids.

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