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Strengthen Climbing Frame

Discussion in 'In the Garden' started by mcdermottc, 9 Aug 2018.

  1. mcdermottc

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    So what do you do when you wife says she would like to buy a £2000 climbing frame .... obviously do the manly thing and suggest you can build your own cheaper using some wood you already have in the garage form another unfinshed job from the last house you lived in.

    As you might expect I have now started to build the said climbing frame and have hit a problem, hopefully someone wiser and more experienced can help with.

    I have used 9 100mm x 100mm larch wood posts cemented 600mm in the ground with 2400mm above the ground. These have been connected together using 6' x 2' joists (I had these already hence why I used these) and bolted together with M12 200mm coach bolts.

    One end of the frame has a post in the middle whereas the other end only has two corner posts, to allow enough room for a tyre swing (see pics). The problem I have is that I think the 6' x 2' beams were a mistake as when my son swings on the tyre swing, there is movement in that end of the frame. I have screwed some cross beams in (see pics) but this has not fixed the movement issue. The middle section will also have some monkey bars being added which might add a bit more strength to that section.

    How can I now strengthen the frame structure so it doesnt wobble when someone is swinging on the tyre swing ?
     

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  2. scbk

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    Tbh I would've put the posts atleast 3ft deep

    What would help a lot is some bits of wood or metal straps at 45 deg in all the corners
     
  3. scbk

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    This sort of idea, the longer you can make them (without getting in the way), the better


    Don't know if it will be enough, but it will certainly add a lot of strength
     

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  4. mcdermottc

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    Thanks im sure 90cm instead of 30cm would have been better, although there isnt any movement at the bottom of the posts, its just at the top.

    Thanks for the suggestion. I had wondered about some corner pieces. I can easily add use 6 x 2 in the corner between joists. For the pieces between post and joist, should I also use 6 x 2 or would something like 3 x 2 be ok ? Just thinking 6 x 2 are going to stand out quite a bit
     
  5. big-all

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    the first thing i would do is temporarily at least brace the top with an "X" temporarily or possibly a a diamond on top this will have the effect to spread the side to side load to all posts
    then in use you can decide the areas where diagonal bracing on the ends or front or back will give best support
    full height diagonals will give best support but trial and error will give you the minimum intrusion for maximum support
     
    Last edited: 9 Aug 2018
  6. mcdermottc

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    thanks for reply big-all. Sorry I am rather dim so just to clarify. Do you mean create an X on top of the whole structure by having a piece of wood going from a corner post to the opposite corner post, repeated for the other two corner posts. I might struggle to get a piece of wood long enough, but could try the diamond
     
  7. big-all

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    yes because you are going from the center off a side to the center off say the back or front and connecting to the front to back timbers in between any loads are shared
    a triangle is perhaps ten times stronger than a parallelogram where only the connections at the joints give the strength
     
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  8. mcdermottc

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    ok thanks I understand now. What size timber would you recommend for the cross beams ? 2x2 2x3 ?
     
  9. big-all

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    something like 3x2" or cls 63x38mm should be ok
    would normally suggest 12mmply or 1" thick timber for bracing but as this is a dynamic[moving load ]you dont want to loose rigidity by the timber bending
     
  10. mcdermottc

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    ok thanks for the advice. I am going to look at a combintaion of both suggestions to ensure a secure rigid frame. Many thanks guys
     
  11. Nige F

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    Here's my 2d. worth - a triangle with it's point @ the tyre chain going back to the corners in the first space - same size as the frame wood. The others may have said this already.:unsure:
     
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