Tree Swings

Nothing says “childhood” quite like the carefree feeling of rushing through the air on a swing. With feet dangling in thin air and the breeze rushing all around them, kids will love to spend hours and hours on our one-of-a-kind kids’ tree swings. From our favorite rope tree swings to all kinds of unique tree swings for kids you won’t find anywhere else, our collection is your family’s one stop shop for swing-tacular fun.tree swings 1Bob Jackson April 9, 2016 at 4:09 pm # Oh no! Joist hangers are terrible idea because they aren’t designed for dynamic loads such as swing moving back & forth that would cause a twisting motion. You also have to account for the tree trunks bending in the wind. A wood beam and joist hangers is an attempt to create a rigid immobile connection between the two tree trunks. On a windy day the trunks will bend and sway causing the nails or screws to back or tear out. Also, the trees will grow bending or crushing the fixed length wood beam. A better solution are two galvanized or stainless steel lag screw eyes. Drill a 3/8 inch pilot hole in each tree trunk, then twist in the lag screw eyes. You’ll probably need a steel rod like a large socket wrench handle through the eye loop for leverage to twist them in the trunk. Hang the tree swing ropes from each screw eye. Now you have a fully mobile solution that doesn’t interfere with the tree swaying. Use at least 5/8 inch diameter shank lag screw eyes with a 4-1/2 inch long shank. Lag screws are critical because it has the coarse threads for wood. Notice that a forged lag screw eye has a solid eye loop that can’t bend open under load as compared to a “wire” eye bolt whose loop is bent closed. The lag screw eyes shouldn’t damage the tree according to Tree damage caused by treehouse building by the The Treehouse Guide. Replytree swings 2Oh no! Joist hangers are terrible idea because they aren’t designed for dynamic loads such as swing moving back & forth that would cause a twisting motion. You also have to account for the tree trunks bending in the wind. A wood beam and joist hangers is an attempt to create a rigid immobile connection between the two tree trunks. On a windy day the trunks will bend and sway causing the nails or screws to back or tear out. Also, the trees will grow bending or crushing the fixed length wood beam. A better solution are two galvanized or stainless steel lag screw eyes. Drill a 3/8 inch pilot hole in each tree trunk, then twist in the lag screw eyes. You’ll probably need a steel rod like a large socket wrench handle through the eye loop for leverage to twist them in the trunk. Hang the tree swing ropes from each screw eye. Now you have a fully mobile solution that doesn’t interfere with the tree swaying. Use at least 5/8 inch diameter shank lag screw eyes with a 4-1/2 inch long shank. Lag screws are critical because it has the coarse threads for wood. Notice that a forged lag screw eye has a solid eye loop that can’t bend open under load as compared to a “wire” eye bolt whose loop is bent closed. The lag screw eyes shouldn’t damage the tree according to Tree damage caused by treehouse building by the The Treehouse Guide. Replytree swings 3Consider some recent tragedies. In 2010, a British girl enjoying her tree swing was killed when she was pinned to the ground by the falling silver birch, which is a tree species considered unsuitable for tree swings. That same year, an unsupervised boy accidentally hanged himself when he became tangled in the tree swing’s rope. Children are also killed or injured when ropes snap or hanger brackets dislodge. An article in the journal Pediatrics stated that “Recreational, single-rope tree swing injuries among children resulted in significant morbidity, regardless of the height of the fall. This activity carries a substantial risk for serious injury.”tree swings 4A tree swing (or a rope swing or tire swing) is composed of a single rope or chain attached to a high tree branch, along with a seat, which is typically a wooden plank or tire. For many homeowners, tree swings represent fond childhood memories, but this type of DIY play equipment is too often poorly constructed by non-professional builders for their children, who can be unaware of the potential dangers. InterNACHI inspectors who encounter these at property exteriors may wish to alert their clients of some of the hazards they pose.tree swings 5Julie July 18, 2011 at 7:43 pm # Hello Bob, I have wanted a tree swing in my back yard for EVER. Problem is, I don’t have a big tree. Darn it. I thought a great tree replacement would be a light pole that are used for traffic lights. I have tried to get information about the light poles and have found dead ends everywhere. I live in Minnesota. I think the light poles are aluminum? I think they could be very strong if they were secured to the ground with footings and decorative pillar looking bases. What do you think? am I nuttier than normal? Could you help me accomplish a dream so I don’t have to wait to grow a tree? Thanks much, Julie Schnell Replytree swings 6Hello Bob, I have wanted a tree swing in my back yard for EVER. Problem is, I don’t have a big tree. Darn it. I thought a great tree replacement would be a light pole that are used for traffic lights. I have tried to get information about the light poles and have found dead ends everywhere. I live in Minnesota. I think the light poles are aluminum? I think they could be very strong if they were secured to the ground with footings and decorative pillar looking bases. What do you think? am I nuttier than normal? Could you help me accomplish a dream so I don’t have to wait to grow a tree? Thanks much, Julie Schnell Replytree swings 7daniel July 10, 2014 at 4:04 pm # Hi Bob, Would you have any ideas for how to build a boom for a rope swing. That is, I have a nice tree but it doesn’t have a good lateral branch for the swing so I was thinking of putting up some kind of boom to hold the swing away from the tree. I don’t want to hurt the tree so was wondering how to do it without nailing into the tree. Seems like it will be hard to hold it stationary – I don’t want it t swivel with the force of each swing. Any thoughts? thanks!! Replytree swings 8Hi Bob, Would you have any ideas for how to build a boom for a rope swing. That is, I have a nice tree but it doesn’t have a good lateral branch for the swing so I was thinking of putting up some kind of boom to hold the swing away from the tree. I don’t want to hurt the tree so was wondering how to do it without nailing into the tree. Seems like it will be hard to hold it stationary – I don’t want it t swivel with the force of each swing. Any thoughts? thanks!! Replytree swings 9Building the tree swing presented a bit of challenge because my 24 foot extension ladder wasn’t tall enough to reach the high and strong branch on the oak tree. Normally, I’d tie the rope to the tree branch using a Swing Hitch knot, but it requires putting your arms around the branch to tie the knot. The Swing Hitch must also be loosened and retied at least once a year so it doesn’t strangle and kill the branch as the tree grows.tree swings 10As described in The Challenge section, the tree limb was too high for my ladder and climbing the tree was possible. The solution for attaching ropes to the tree limb is a Running Bowline knot, a type of slipknot. A key benefit of a slipknot is it expands as the tree grows and won’t strangle the limb.tree swings 11Hello Bob, I have wanted a tree swing in my back yard for EVER. Problem is, I don’t have a big tree. Darn it. I thought a great tree replacement would be a light pole that are used for traffic lights. I have tried to get information about the light poles and have found dead ends everywhere. I live in Minnesota. I think the light poles are aluminum? I think they could be very strong if they were secured to the ground with footings and decorative pillar looking bases. What do you think? am I nuttier than normal? Could you help me accomplish a dream so I don’t have to wait to grow a tree?tree swings 12A sturdy tree is a must for a safe tree swing, but this consideration may be overlooked on properties that lack a variety of healthy trees from which to choose. Also, inspectors should remember that while trees appear stationary, they are actually alive and constantly, albeit slowly, growing and changing shape. As such, branches will “absorb” hanger brackets, and overhead branches will become brittle, gradually transforming what was once a properly installed tree swing into one that is no longer safe to use.

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