Landscaping, Hardscaping, Gardening & Curb Appeal Tips

How to Build a Wooden Kids' Swing Set

You need just basic woodworking tools and lumber to construct our updated version of a classic kids' swing set.

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Materials Needed:

  • 3" exterior screws
  • 8' pressure-treated pine 2x6
  • (4) 8' pressure-treated pine 4x4s
  • (4) 12" lag bolts
  • 4 galvanized fender washers
  • 12' pressure-treated 2x4 pine plank
  • 4 exterior lag eye screws
  • drill fitted with 1" paddle bit
  • measuring tape
  • landscape-marking spray paint
  • shovel
  • 10 bags fast-setting cement
  • cement mixing tub
  • pencil
  • miter saw
  • adjustable wrench
  • speed square
  • torpedo level
  • hammer
  • screw swing hardware with bushing
  • orbital sander and sanding pads
  • exterior paint
  • roller handle and cover
  • paint pan
  • painter's tape
  • spool of heavy-duty nylon rope
  • utility knife

Lay Out Crossbeam and Add Stakes

The swing set structure is made up of four vertical support beams (4x4 pressure-treated pine) and one horizontal crossbeam (2x6 pressure-treated pine). To determine best location for swing set, lay crossbeam directly on ground, repositioning until it's in the perfect spot then mark each end of the crossbeam on the ground with wooden stakes and a hammer.

Mark and Dig Holes

The vertical support beams must be anchored in cement. In order to do this, first use measuring tape and landscape-marking spray paint to mark a 3-foot by 1-foot rectangle on the ground, centered around the location for each beam (Image 1). Next, referring to the spray-painted marks, dig a 1-1/2-foot deep hole for each beam (Images 2 and 3).

Miter Top Ends of Vertical Posts

Once postholes have been dug, it's time to start cutting all wood to size. Use speed square and pencil to mark a 45-degree angle on the tops of all four vertical 4x4 posts, then cut with circular saw (Images 1 and 2). Tip: This mitered edge is not only decorative, it will also help with water runoff, reducing the chances of wood deterioration.

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