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Author Archives: Ashley Tarr

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Ashley Tarr is the digital content manager for Eastern Jungle Gym and Best in Backyards of Connecticut and New York. When she's not blogging, posting on social media or creating videos, she is spending time reading, and enjoying family, friends and her dog.

  • Swing Set Accessories & More Holiday Gift Ideas

    The Top 5 Swing Set Accessories and Outdoor Products for Every Holiday Gift List

    It's the most wonderful time of the year, and we have recommendations for the best swing set accessories and backyard products to give this holiday season. Whether you're shopping for your husband, wife, children, or extended family, this list has something for your loved one.

    Swing Set Accessories and Playset Ideas

    Our first recommendation is the Eastern Jungle Gym Easy 1-2-3 A-Frame Bracket. We suggest giving the bracket to your favorite DIYer. The bracket makes building an A-frame structure easier than ever by creating a safe, secure angle for your lumber. This bracket may be used to build a number of outdoor structures. Made with top-quality steel, the bracket features a one-piece design with welded seems. It is extremely heavy-duty, weighing 10 pounds.

    Perhaps you have in mind a more complete hardware kit that includes the Easy 1-2-3 Bracket. Look no further than the Classic Cedar Swing Set Hardware Kit. This kit comes with all the hardware you need to build an A-frame swing set. Three swings are also included. Simply purchase your own lumber and this kit and set aside 1-2 hours for assembly. Then you will be ready to surprise your kids with a brand new swinging structure right in your backyard. All of the hardware provided in this kit is extremely heavy-duty. It is designed to support both children and adults so the whole family can play!

    Families that have an existing swing set may want to upgrade their current activities or add a new swing. The High Back Full Bucket Swing is the perfect accessory for the very little ones. This swing allows children of all ages to enjoy the swing set. Recommended for children six months and older, this swing seat is fully enclosed. It also features a high back for additional support. The bottom half of the swing chains are coated in soft plastic for a pinch-free grip. This means parents can rest assured, knowing the kids are swinging safely and comfortably while having a ton of fun.

    More Backyard Ideas: Sheds and Trampolines

    Shifting the focus to outdoor items that go beyond swing set accessories, our next suggestion is a storage shed. Maybe your kids are older, or perhaps you are shopping for your husband or extended family. If that's the case, consider a backyard A-frame storage shed. These multi-purpose storage structures are available in a wide range of sizes and styles. Choose from wood or vinyl and customize your colors. Additional options include shutters, double doors, windows and more. The classic A-frame style compliments any backyard or outdoor area. Often offered pre-built or built-on-site, these sheds fit backyards of all sizes. You can even turn your gift into a family bonding activity! Clean out the garage with the family, or gather and store all of your swing set accessories indoors for the winter months. The kids will be happy to help set up Dad’s perfect Christmas gift.

    Last but certainly not least are Springfree trampolines. These products add a whole new level of fun to the backyard. Available in multiple sizes, Springfree trampoline are springless, which means there is a reduced chance of injury. With soft edges and a safety net enclosure, this is a great gift idea for mom, dad and the kids. Springfree Trampoline come standard with Tgoma – Take Gaming Outside and Make It Active. Tgoma is a gaming system that allows the children to connect their tablet to the trampoline, making the experience more interactive. The app features games that incorporate education, fitness. The kids will have so much fun they won't even realize they are exercising. When the children are at school, mom and dad can get outside and use the trampoline to get active, too. In our opinion, a Springfree trampoline is the perfect holiday gift for the entire family.

    Making the Most of the Holidays

    If you have an extra vacation day around the holidays, take a few hours to spend time as a family enjoying your new products and incorporating physical activity into your routine. We want to wish everyone a happy and healthy holiday season and a wonderful New Year!

  • Holiday Gift Idea for the DIYer: Swing Set Bracket

    Holiday Gift Idea for the DIYer in Your Life:

    Multi-Use Swing Set Bracket

    For many of us, holiday shopping gets a bit more difficult each year. First, there's the challenge of selecting an original gift that the person doesn't already have. You also need to find something that fits your budget. And of course, if you're like us, the element of surprise is a necessity, too.

    When it comes to the DIY-er in your family, we have a suggestion that meets all of the above criteria: a solid steel swing set bracket. Our Easy 1-2-3 A-Frame Brackets are extremely versatile. They have a 45-degree angle between the legs, and 14 pre-drilled holes for easy assembly.

    While we use our swing set bracket exclusively for playset purposes, we've heard of customers using the product in a variety of ways.

    Swing Set Bracket Uses

    Here are some of the ways DIY folks around the country have used this piece of hardware: Hammock stands.

    - A homemade, A-frame hoist with a solid wood beam. One customer planned to use this for lifting tractor implements, cradling livestock/large game, and supporting motorcycles when performing maintenance.

    - An A-frame for a single swing or a bench swing (one of the many products for which we use the bracket).

    - Adding a swing to an existing structure, such as a deck or a playhouse.

    Planning and Presenting Your Gift

    There are a few different ways you can give your loved one a swing set bracket. The first option is to purchase one (or two, depending on the project you think he or she may have in mind), wrap it and present it. Be sure to account for the heavy weight of the item when you go about wrapping and transporting.

    Another option is a gift certificate to be used toward the purchase of the bracket. Depending on the amount, this could give the recipient some flexibility to add additional items (hardware, a swing, etc.).

    Our last suggestion applies if you are the DIY expert in the family. If this is the case, you could use these brackets to make one of the above-named items as a gift for a loved one.

    A Solid Option

    No matter which route you take, a quality, steel swing set bracket is a useful gift. It leaves no shortage of possibilities for DIYers! Whether used for a swing set or an unrelated project, a swing set bracket is sure to be a memorable holiday gift.

  • How to Preserve Your Playground Set

    How to Perform Maintenance on and Preserve Your Playground Set

    These days a playground set is a big investment and like any other, it pays to protect it. Preserving your wooden swing set through the years doesn't have to be a labor- or time-intensive project. In fact, it's really a simple task. Owners who are willing to set aside one weekend each year to perform maintenance and upkeep will be able to retain their swing set's beauty for a long time to come.

    Staining and Sealing

    Staining or sealing is one the most important components of preserving your backyard playground. To protect the unit from the elements, we recommend you stain or seal annually. Of course, you may find that it is beneficial to stain or seal more or less often, depending on the climate and weather of your location.

    The first step in staining or sealing your set is cleaning it. We like the idea of using plain old soap and water here. A power washing is of great assistance for this step. Next, removing accessories and toys, and let the swing set dry. Ideally, the cleaning could be done on a Friday night, or early Saturday. Then, on Sunday, you can finish the process: sand rough patches and apply the stain or sealer. It is important to wait another 24 hours for the stain or sealer to dry. A more detailed list of step-by-step instructions is available here.

    Hardware Checks

    When it comes to checking the hardware on your children's playground set, there's simply no such thing as too often. At least once a year, or even once a season, inspect the bolts and tighten as necessary. This doesn't take much in the way of time or resources -- all you need is a wrench and an hour's time!

    Replacements and Cleaning

    Another way to keep the playground set looking brand new is regular cleaning. An annual wipe down of swings and toys should be sufficient. Replacements should be much more sporadic. For example, if you live in the Northeast and the past few winters have been particularly tough, a tent top canopy may need replacing after three or so years. The same goes for a sling swing. Eventually, after a number of years, it may be time to make a small investment in a new swing. This is also an opportunity to upgrade the playground set, and incorporate a horse glider swing for two or gym-ring trapeze bar combo as a new activity.

    Commitment is Key

    Mom or dad, or both, should be able to accomplish all of the recommendations provided here in a day or two. We recommend marking a weekend on the calendar in advance so you don't forget about the upkeep of your playground set. Even if it's six months away, you'll give yourself a reminder. Once you've done the staining, tightening and cleaning for that year, skip ahead 12 months and schedule the next maintenance day. We encourage you to get the whole family involved. After all, having a playground set is all about creating childhood memories. Why not making this a teaching moment for the little ones?

  • Giving the Gift of a Swing Set

    Ways to Give Your Child the Gift of a Swing Set

    Children love to unleash their imagination and enjoy playtime with a swing set! Giving the gift of a playset is a wonderful way to encourage physical activity for children. Plus, swing sets are a gift that never goes out of style, especially in comparison to other toys! Children can use them to play with family and friends for many years to come. 

    1. Giving the Gift of a Swing Set for Birthdays

    There are a variety of ways swing sets can be presented as a birthday gift for your child. One of the ways to approach giving this gift is by presenting your child with a playset prior to their birthday and hosting a birthday party around the playset so they are able to use the toy immediately.

    Depending on the price of the set, and the budget for your child’s gift, this toy could be presented as a birthday present for the next two or three years. Or, if your children's birthdays are in the same season, you could give the playset as a combined gift.

    2. Surprising Children with a Swing Set from Santa for Christmas

    We also love the idea of presenting the swing set as a Christmas gift. Incorporate the holidays into your gift giving by presenting this toy as a special present from Santa. This will make your child’s holiday extra special! Simply have the kids bundle up and head outside instead of down to the Christmas tree. Just be sure to keep the kids away from the backyard the week prior! We recommend planning alternative activities -- such as cookie baking and ornament-making -- for that week.

    3. Rewarding Positive Behavior During the School Year with a Swing Set

    If your child had a particularly difficult year with school or achieved a goal or new academic milestone, consider presenting them with a swing set to reward their hard work! Giving this gift to your child during the end of the year is ideal as they will be able to play with friends and enjoy this playset in the outdoors all summer long! Another option is to present the gift as a motivator. For example, if you give the kids a swing set part way through the year, you can use it for daily positive reinforcement. Playing on the swing set could be a daily reward for completing homework or other assignments.

    The Bottom Line

    The swing set is a present you can continuing adding to by gifting your child with new accessories for future birthdays, holidays, and other celebrations. From adding a new clubhouse toy to upgrading a swing, there are plenty of ways to update a playset

    Do you have a unique story about how you gave the gift of a swing set to your child? Post a comment or photo on our Facebook page to share your experience!

  • Swing Set Mulch: The Best Play Area Surfacing

    Swing Set Mulch: A Safe, Long-Lasting Surfacing Option

    For parents interested in buying a backyard jungle gym, swing set mulch is typically an afterthought. Moms and dads typically see safety features and construction as the two biggest deciding factors (rightly so!). But swing set surfacing -- which parents often overlook because it exists outside the jungle gym-- is one of the most important aspects of playground safety.

    The Recommendations

    Jungle gyms need a shock-absorbing surface so that children have a safe place to run, jump and play. They should never be installed on concrete or asphalt. During our 25 years' of experience, we have installed plenty of jungle gyms on grass. Still, the US Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends using one of the following: wood mulch, chips, shredded rubber (mulch), sand or pea gravel. Our favorite of these options is rubber mulch.

    Why We Love Swing Set Mulch: 5 Reasons

    • It's eco-friendly. Rubber mulch is an environmentally responsible choice, as it is made -- in the USA -- from recycled tires.
    • It's long-lasting. Unlike wood mulch, sand or gravel, swing set mulch is made of rubber, so it has a nice weight to it. That means it is less likely to float or fly away. It also need to be replenished less often than other surfacing materials.
    • It's available in five colors. Whether you want to go natural, neutral or bright, there's a rubber mulch shade for your backyard. Or allow your child to choose as a way to customize his or her jungle gym. Color options include black, forest green, cocoa brown, royal blue and red.
    • It drains well. Swing Set mulch does not retain moisture. Plus, it dries quickly, so the kids can get back out to their jungle gym after the rain passes.
    • Pests are not a problem. Unlike other surfacing options, swing set mulch does not attract vermin, insects, bugs or termites.

     

    On top of all that, swing set mulch is recognized by experts for its safety. Click here to learn more about rubber swing set mulch, and don't hesitate to contact us with questions!

     

     

  • Ways to Encourage Playtime on the Swing Set

    Ways to Encourage Children to Play Outside on the Backyard Swing Set

    A backyard swing set is a must-have for most families these days. The kids have a safe place where they can get active and have fun day after day. Mom and dad have the security of knowing the kids are just outside the kitchen window. And of course, the opportunities for new and exciting play are nothing short of abundant. The playset is the type of investment that pays for itself -- and then some -- in the long-run.

    Still, the day might come when it's difficult to tear the kids away from the video games or tablet. If that's the case, we have a few suggestions that will help you get the little ones to return to regular play on their beloved backyard swing set.

    • Encourage swing set playtime with a friend. This can include spontaneous evening get-togethers, scheduled playtime during the weekends, and more.
    • Encourage your children to play on the swing set with you. This is a great parent-child activity that presents an opportunity for both you and your child to get physical activity.
    • Encourage outdoor activity as a time away from devices and homework, and a time that can be used to focus on relaxing.
    • Incorporate a playtime activity into each season. For example, in the fall season you can incorporate playtime into your child’s other favorite activities such as raking, playing in a pile of leaves, enjoying a cup of warm apple cider, etc.
    • Use the outdoor swing set as the main attraction for your next gathering. Whether you're hosting a Halloween party, birthday bash, or a spring or summer barbecue, the playset is the perfect place for a group of kids to play. Plus, depending on the occasion, you can add decorations to the swing set to make your backyard a bit more festive.
    • Make swing set personalization an ongoing process. This means allowing the kids to add their own creative touches to the clubhouse, playhouse and/or tree house. Think stickers, a nearby flower garden, toy dishes for the built-in picnic table, and more.

    Playing on the backyard swing set doesn't have to be predictable. With these tips, you'll be able to nudge the children to spend even more time outside, without them knowing it!

  • Outdoor Activities to Keep Kids Moving

    5 Outdoor Activities to Keep Your Kids Moving This Fall

    As we reluctantly say goodbye to summer and welcome fall, many parents find it challenging to come up with new outdoor activities for the kids. Often times, children simply want to collapse on the couch after school and watch cartoons or play on their preferred device. Or, maybe they spend time on the computer for homework. Either way, the last thing your little ones should be doing is remaining stationary! Fall is a wonderful time of year to spend time outside. The days are still warm, and the air is crisp. Here are some ways to get your kids moving this fall.

    Implementing a New Routine

    The first step to get your kids outside and moving is to start a new routine. For most children, the precious free time after school is spent completing homework, snacking, and relaxing.  With a busy schedule it may seem difficult to fit physical activity into your routine. However, establishing an outside routine is easier than you may think!

    We recommend adding outside playtime into your child’s schedule as soon as they arrive home from school. This helps the kids to relax and decompress after a busy day. It also provides an opportunity for exercise. Think you'll be met with resistance? Not to worry! We've come up with five exciting outdoor activities for kids to participate in. Rotate through these all year long and your kids will become outside enthusiasts! Not only will they burn off energy, but they will also become experts at entertaining themselves!

    Finding the Right Outdoor Activities for the Kids

    Suggest these playful activities that provide an opportunity for spending time with friends and getting moving:

    1. Playing on a Swing Set: Most backyard swing sets provide many activities all in one. In any one of our cedar playsets, the kids choose from climbing the rock wall, using the swings, zipping down the slide and much more. While A-frame swing sets are smaller, they also allow for a few children to play at once. Having a swing set at your home provides children with the opportunity to perfect their athletic skills. It also gives them a chance use their imaginations. Children simply love to pretend the jungle gym and backyard is a pirate ship at sea, or a castle with a moat.
    2. Playing a Game of Baseball or Soccer: After school can also be a great time for the kids to engage in sports. Suggest a tossing around the baseball, shooting hoops or kicking the soccer ball. If they play on a local sports team, this is a great way to make sure they get practice both on and off the field. Don't forget about jumping rope and rollerskating, too!
    3. Helping the Family with Chores: If your kids are in the routine of weekly chores and allowance, add a few outdoor jobs to their responsibilities. Chores can include things such weeding and raking leaves. The kids can also as water the flowers as needed. They can even get a head start on the upcoming season and organize winter materials such as shovels and holiday decorations with adult assistance.
    4. Playing a Game of Tag: When all else fails, kids always enjoy a good old-fashioned game of tag! While the kids take turns being "It" (they can always use Rock-Paper-Scissors to select the first person), they're running wild hiding and ducking their opponents. They are also actively problem solving and relying on their creativity to avoid being tagged. If your children are tired of playing tag you can suggest other traditional games like Freeze Tag, Mother May I, and Simon Says.
    5. Exploring the Outdoors: Encourage the kids to explore the yard and neighborhood on foot or by bicycle. Ask them about their time exploring and what types of wildlife surprises they encountered!

    Making playtime seem like a fun activity is a great way to encourage kids to spend time outside and get physical activity during this season!

  • 7 Benefits of Having a Backyard Jungle Gym

    When it comes to entertaining the kids, nothing compares to having a jungle gym in your very own backyard! Jungle gyms offer endless playtime, provide plenty of opportunities to enhance independence, and enable children to socialize.

    In order to help our customers understand all the benefits of a swing set, we've created an infographic. Here's a quick summary of all the advantages your child or children will get out of a backyard jungle gym.

    Eastern Jungle Gym Backyard Jungle Gym Infographic

    Seven Benefits of Having a Jungle Gym

    Benefit #1 - Exercise

    An active child is a happy one -- and a healthy one. Jungle gyms help children get into a routine of outdoor exploration that hopefully lasts a lifetime. During an hour of running, climbing and swinging, your child not only burns calories, but also improves athletic skills.

    Benefit #2 - Imagination

    It won't take long for the kids to put on their creative caps and turn the jungle gym into a pirate ship at sea, a castle, a fort, or a secret hideaway. Sit back and relax while you listen to the kids use their imagination. We guarantee you'll enjoy yourself just as much as they enjoy themselves.

    Benefit #3 - Sharing

    Whether your children have siblings, neighbors, or friends, the nature of the backyard jungle gym reinforces the idea of taking turns. Since many swing sets have a single slide, a single rock wall, a single set of monkey bars, etc., children simply must share. Of course, having mom and dad there to issue sharing reminders as needed is helpful, but you should also know that the kids will probably surprise you and navigate turn-taking amongst themselves.

    Benefit #4 – Bonding

    Our motto is "Creating Childhood Memories" for a reason. But we have to admit, the memories created around the jungle gym are shared by the whole family. Maybe mom and dad join in every now and then for a quick zip down the slide. Or perhaps grandma and grandpa enjoy nothing more than giving the little ones a push. A quality jungle gym will be sturdy enough so that even adults can enjoy it. A swing set allows people of all ages to bond together

    Benefit #5 – Fun for All Ages

    As just mentioned, anyone in the family can engage in play on the swing set, not just the little ones! Get the whole family involved and enjoy a portion of the day together by playing on the swing set in the backyard.

    Benefit #6 – Improved Safety

    The newer swing set designs are nothing compared to what was on the market 15 or 20 years ago. Children can play, while parents’ nerves are at ease knowing their swing set has a smooth surface, recessed hardware, and high quality swing set accessories guaranteeing top notch safety. Children can enjoy many hours of fun and safe engagement on a backyard swing set.

    Benefit #7 – Overcome Fears

    Jungle gyms help children overcome their different fears like the height of swings, crossing the monkey bars, climbing on the rock wall, or sliding down a slide. It is common for children to have a slight sense of uneasiness when facing these tasks for the first time. With repetition and the development of courage, children will be cruising on the monkey bars or whizzing down the slide in no time!

    Your children are bound to love the convenience of having their very own swing set, and we bet that you will too! Always remember, a swing set lasts longer when it is well taken care of. Winter is right around the corner, learn how to prepare your swing set for the harsh weather conditions!

  • Playset Plans: How to Build a Swing Set

    Searching for playset plans can be a challenging task. With so many different swing set models on the market, the options may seem overwhelming. We're writing today to give you the same advice we've given customers for 24 years: Keep it simple. When it comes to building a DIY swing set, we always suggest the Classic A-Frame Cedar Swing Set (available as a hardware kit here). The design is simple, and so is the construction. Plus, you can never go wrong with a pair of traditional sling swings and a gym ring/trapeze bar accessory in the backyard.

    First, we recommend selecting an appropriate space for the swing set. The playset plans for the Classic A-Frame specify a finished product that is about 12 feet wide, 8 feet tall and 8 feet deep. It should be installed on fairly level ground, and there should be about six feet of clearance from obstructions. Be sure to also select a soft surface, such as rubber mulch or a plush lawn.

    A-Frame Playset Plans Material List

    Lumber

    Classic cedar swing set from Eastern Jungle Gym When it comes to DIY swing sets, the Easy 1-2-3 A-Frame Swing Set Bracket is an essential.

     

    • One (1) 4'x6'x10'
    • Four (4) 4'x4'x8'

     

    Hardware and Accessories

      • Twelve (12) 3/8" x 6.5" hex bolts, with twenty-four (24) 3/8" washers and 12 lock nuts
      • Thirty-six (36) 5/16 x 3" lag bolts, with thirty-six (36) 5/16" washers
      • Two (2) swing set support brackets (try our patent-pending Easy 1-2-3 A-Frame Swing Set Bracket)
      • Four (4) anchor stakes
      • Two (2) sling swings
      • One (1) gym ring trapeze bar combo swing
      • Six (6) ductile swing hangers
      • Six (6) snap hooks

    A-Frame Playset Plans Tool List

    • 1/2" standard socket, 3/4" standard socket
    • Standard socket wrench, open-end wrench
    • Electric drill
    • 1/4" pilot drill bit, 5/16" drill bit
    • 2-pound hammer, claw hammer
    • Tape measure
    • Step ladder
    • Safety glasses

    A Few Important Notes

    Before you begin assembling, we want to remind you of two critical steps. First, drilling pilot holes is essential in order to minimize splitting of the lumber. Second, we recommend always installing a washer before driving in a lag bolt.

    Additionally, if you plan to use our Easy 1-2-3 A-Frame Swing Set Bracket, keep in mind that the product is designed for kiln-dried wood. We strongly caution against forcing the wood into the bracket. The lumber should slide in easily, and the fit should be snug. If you find your lumber is too large, try planing down to achieve a comfortable fit.

    Instructions: Beginning Steps

        • Install the ductile swing hangers. When you purchase a complete swing set from Eastern Jungle Gym, the holes in the lumber are pre-drilled. But if your swing set is a true DIY project, this likely won't be the case. That means you will have to measure and mark the lumber to ensure the swing hangers are properly spaced. To do this, lay the swing beam (the 4'x6'x10' piece of lumber) on the ground and start at one end of the lumber. Place the center of the first hanger 18 inches in, on center (OC). Go another 18 inches OC for the second hanger, then 12 inches OC for the third. Measure another 18 inches OC for the fourth hanger, and from there, measure 12 inches OC for the fifth. Finally, measure 18 more inches OC for the last hanger. This should leave you with another 18 inches from the center of the swing hanger to the end of the beam. You should have a total of 12 holes, or six sets of two holes, to accommodate your three swings. The diagram below provides an illustration of the spacing, and may be enlarged by clicking.A-Frame Swing Beam Drilling Diagram for Playset PlansOnce you have marked the lumber, pilot drill the first set of on-center hanger holes using the electric drill and 5/16" drill bit. Next, insert bolts, with washers, from what will be the top of the swing beam. It may be helpful to turn the wood on its side for this process, as shown in the video below. Once the bolts and washers are in, slide the hanger over the bolts and add washers. Finally, screw on lock nuts and washers, and tighten using an open-end wrench. Repeat for the remaining hangers.

    Adding Brackets and Erecting the Swing Set

      • The next step is to install the swing set brackets. Position the beam so the newly installed hangers are facing upward (the opposite of the way they will rest once the playset is fully assembled). Slide one of the brackets onto the end of the lumber until it is flush with the wood. Pilot drill in the designated locations (our brackets come pre-drilled, which makes your life much easier), using the 1/4" pilot drill bit. Then, use one lag bolt and washer per bracket hole to fasten the bracket. Do the same on the reverse side of the bracket, and then repeat the entire process on the other end of the beam.
      • The side supports must be fastened next. Your remaining lumber (four 4x4x8' timbers) will make up the side supports. Install these using the same method we provided for attaching the beam to the bracket.
      • It's time to erect the playset. Once each of the brackets have been secured to all three pieces of lumber, you are ready to stand up the unit. If you've been working alone thus far, you'll need to find another adult to assist with this step.

    Finishing Touches

      • Hang the swings.  We are nearing the end of our playset plans, which means it's time to put up the swings! Use the snap hooks to attach the swing chains to the ductile swing hangers. We typically place the gym ring trapeze bar combo in the center position, but arrangement preferences vary.
      • Secure your swing set with anchor stakes. If you are using our anchor stakes, you will want to position the anchor at an angle and insert it into the ground next to the beam. You can accomplish this by using the hammer cited in the tool list above. Once the stake is in the ground, pound down the anchor until you are able to secure the anchor washer to the bottom of the post with a lag bolt. If you have purchased your stakes elsewhere, we recommend reviewing and following the specific directions for that product.

    Congrats!

    Now that you've reached the end of this blog, we want to congratulate you on successfully completing your project! We hope these playset plans have been helpful and we welcome your questions.

  • DIY Swing Sets: The Essential Piece of Hardware

    If you've ever Googled DIY swing sets, you know there are an endless number of plans and designs to consider. Additionally, there are tons of hardware and accessory products to choose from. In this blog you'll learn about the one must-have item for all DIY swing sets. Whether the project is your first or 50th, this piece of hardware will make your life easier.

       The Product

    After 24 years' designing, manufacturing and installing playsets, we know that a strong connecting bracket is an absolute necessity for all swing beams. That's where the Easy 1-2-3 A-Frame Swing Set Bracket comes in. We designed this product six years ago to add another level of safety, strength and security to our swing sets. Fast-forward to today, and we have a patent pending on the design. And it turns out that we're no longer the biggest fans of the bracket -- our customers are!

    The Easy 1-2-3 A-Frame Swing Set Bracket is made of heavy-duty steel that has been welded together. We designed this piece of hardware to work with two 4” x 4” supports and one 4” x 6” swing beam. The idea is simple: Slide in the lumber and fasten with bolts. Repeat on the other side (depending on the specifics of your DIY swing set) and your swing set has a solid, strong foundation.

    Demonstration

    Specifications to Keep in Mind

    There are a few things we'd like you to remember as you plan your DIY swing set. We've designed the bracket to work with a kiln-dried 4" x 6" with a true measurement of 3-1/2" x 5-1/2". Our recommendation is based on the size of the bracket opening (3-5/8" x 5-5/8").

    With that in mind, we stress that the lumber should never be forced into the bracket. The goal is for it to simply slide in, which is the case for the great majority of customers. In the event that the lumber is too large, we suggest planing down the wood as needed. To avoid this task, we advise bringing a tape measure when purchasing the lumber to ensure you get the proper size.

    Finally, for more information on the bracket, check out Eastern Jungle Gym's verified third party reviews from TrustPilot. They provide lots of first-hand details. And don't forget that we're always here to help! Simply give us a call at 1-800-752-9787, or leave a comment below!

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