Building a Pallet Swing - 5/15/2016
So it's a beautiful Sunday afternoon and I was planning on getting a couple of bags of mulch to put in my flower bed. Ran all over Orange, but no one had any plain old mulch. I didn't want red, or black or any other "color" - just plain old mulch. The only option was going to be going to Culpeper to Lowes or Walmart and I really didn't want to go there.
So... I needed something to do - idle hands and all that... And it need to be outside. It has rained here everyday since like forever and the sun was shining brightly above. Staying in the house was NOT AN OPTION.
I had a spot up in the backyard where I wanted to put a swing. I've been thinking about this for a few years now and finally decided the time was right. I had the pallet, just needed the rope and after a quick trip to Tractor Supply, I had that, too.
So up the ladder I went to saw off some little twiggy branches that were in my way. I've been looking at this branch with the hopes for a swing for a looong time. Mu husband, Gary, said it wouldn't work because it was so close to the fence (he really should know better than to tell me I couldn't do something).
First I assembled the tools and materials. The pallet, of course, rope, a circular saw, extension cord, a persuader (a crowbar-like thing that I don't know why I have), a hammer, drill & hand saw and my sander. I didn't need the rake - it was used in the garden the day before...
I had to cut the pallet down to size and remove most of the top
boards. They needed to be removed in order to space them properly
for the seat of my swing. This was no easy task! Those suckers are
nailed in there with nails that have these little barbs on them that
makes them damn near impossible to remove. And they are nailed
in so deep that you can't pry them out with the back end of the hammer.
This is where the persuader/crowbar thing comes in. I would've taken
a picture of this process, but I only have 2 hands and one was holding
the persuader while the other was swinging at it with the hammer
trying to wedge it in between the top board and the lower cross piece.
Here you can see that it's cut to the right size and I've laid the boards on it to get an idea of the spacing. Yes, those two boards are upside down. I had to get those nails out and I almost gave up! But then again, you can't tell me I can't do something and expect that to be that. I finally got them out by pounding them with the hammer from the underside (pounding on the points). Anyway, it worked!
Got all the boards nailed down. Next came sanding. Pallets are very rough and I didn't want splinters in my butt!
Then it was back up the ladder with the rope. Did I mention that this limb was about 25 feet off the ground? No? Well it is and I'm not overly fond of climbing that high, but I was determined that this was happening. So once again, up I went with my rope in hand. I wrapped the rope around the branch so it would be somewhat stable and not slip if I sat on the front edge of the swing(!). You can't see the other side of the ladder where the other piece of rope is...
I was up and down that ladder a million times - no lie.
I finally got it all together. I wrapped the rope around the side piece and tied it back onto itself. I used a level to get it just right and now I am so happy! I have my swing!!
I was soooo tired when I was done - tired, but happy! I needn't have worried about about the proximity of the fence - it's really not as close as it looks. I really should have a glass of wine in my hand in this photo - I deserved it!