Build a Horseshoe Court
A horseshoe pit is always a winner when it comes to backyard entertaining.
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For the backyard transformation for their first hojme, Kristen and Paul relied on Steve Watson and his team of experts for some help with some exterior improvements. Up first: turn the overgrown backyard into an inviting entertainment area with a horseshoe pit and spectator seating. Here is a list of tools and materials, and summary of the basic steps, in the installation of the horseshoe pit.
Materials and tools:
string lines (2)
18" rebar sections (40)
2x4 pressure treated lumber, 12-foot lengths (16)
400 sq. ft. river rock gravel
700 sq. ft. mulch
1000 sq. ft. landscape fabric
electric miter saw
cordless drill with battery and magnetic screw tip
3/8" auger bit, 16" length
air compressor with hoses
100' measuring tape
1. Clear and measure off the area. After clearing away the weeds and brush using a sod-cutter and weed trimmers, Steve and Kristen begin the project by measuring out the play area and laying two-by-fours. Diagrams for regulation horseshoe pits can be found online.
Tip: Gas-powered sod-cutters are great for clearing large areas. They cut just below the surface so that weeds, brush and the top layer of dirt can come up in sheets. Sod-cutters can be rented at most home improvement centers.
2. Lay out the pit. Once the area has been cleared and measured, follow the diagram to lay out the pit areas. Use string lines as a guide for the wood frame.
3. Assemble the frame components. Use pressure treated 2x4's for the frame assembly. Cut the 2x4's to the proper length and lay out the individual frame pieces, following your string guides.
4. Nail together the frame. Nail the 2x4's together to form the frame.
5. Level and square the frame. As you assemble the frame, square up the frame elements (pit areas) by checking opposite diagonal measurements within each square.
Tip: When assembling a square or rectangular frame, the frame is roughly square when diagonal measurements match.
6. Spike the frame. Next, starting at the highest point, spike the 2x4's to the ground using rebar. Be certain to level the frame as you work around the perimeter. If you need to, either dig out or shim up the frame — using blocks of pressure treated lumber if you use shims — to level the pieces.
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