Want to make a simple tree house ideas but don’t know how to start? Look no further; read this article to find a personal DIY simple tree house ideas and guide. Here is a step by step procedure for constructing a simple tree house ideas all by yourself. Now, just don’t stand and stare at the tree in your backyard. Start building today!
Read about easy how to build a treehouse for your kids step by step. – A simple tree house ideas is a special place and building one with your kids is an experience you won’t forget. They are so much fun and will last for years if they are made right. Just make sure you give the kids some time up there too.
Introduction: Simple Tree House Ideas
A simple tree house ideas provides youths and adults the luxury of spending some quality time with their self or with friends without the usual disturbances from people. One can climb up and spend some time alone reading a book as golden leaves drop to the ground slowly on a leisurely autumn day, or have a sleep over with a best friend. Add some great music for sing-alongs to or just lounge on a hammock for a retreat from mundane slumber on the bed or couch during the day.
However, most people get intimidated at the thought of having to erect the whole edifice all by them. One thing they worry about the most is that the tree house might collapse and fall from the height. But the fact is anybody can put up a sturdy simple tree house ideas that can stay up for years to come. All they have to do is carefully stick to certain guidelines, legal rules and basic engineering tenets, along with a little rationale. This article is a DIY Simple Tree House Ideas, How to Build a Treehouse for Your Kids Step by Step
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The Tree House
The Tree House was started in 1970. Using some “borrowed” lumber salvaged during a remodeling project, the first platform was built in a 113 year old elm tree seven feet off the ground. A rope for a tire swing was placed over a branch at the heart pounding height of 30 feet, put there by an 11 year old kid who was sure he was going to fall.
Over the next few years, the tree house grew. First sides were added, then a roof into which a trapdoor was cut. More sides and another roof made it bigger and better. Another trap door was added and railings turned the roof into a lookout tower platform. Eventually, the lookout tower gained its own roof and the bottom half of the sides were closed in. Standing on the top floor, you looked down on the peaks of single story houses.
That tree house became “the” goto place for fun in the neighborhood and at times more than 10 kids were up there. Along came Dutch Elm Disease and trees died all over the neighborhood–but not the tree house tree. Over the years, the tree grew around the boards that framed the platforms, completely encompassing the lumber.
Sadly, by 1988 the tree house was showing its age and was no longer safe. I climbed up one last time and cut it down down piece by piece. As if it no longer had a reason for living, the tree died suddenly four years later and was cut down the following winter. There were 135 rings on the stump, one for each year the tree had lived.
Have Fun Building these Simple Tree House Ideas with Your Kids
Step by Step Procedure for Constructing a Simple Tree House Ideas
Find a sturdy, robust tree in your backyard – one that has been around for a long time without rot and any shortcomings. The roots should run deep into the earth and the branches grow out of the trunk, horizontal to the ground.
Before coming up with a plan for the simple tree house ideas, check with neighbors and the local planning authorities to see if there are any laws against or regarding its construction. Do not cut wood before you have an absolute plan that you’re sure of.
- Keep the tree house not far away from ground level. A 5 to 8-feet height does fine and will look higher from up there.
- Pick a spot for the platform where there are firm branches or posts to give it tough support. Plan the tree house and do your groundwork by estimating the dimensions, size, and measurements.
- Follow this up by nailing wooden boards to the tree to act as a ladder to climb and descend during the assembly.
- To start the construction, place a strong slab of wood to act as a platform at the base of the tree house to ensure its safety and endurance.
- Keep the platform straight and stiff and position it centrally on the tree so it is not easily shaken due to shifting weights or strong winds.
- Use galvanized nails (rust-free) to secure it safely in place. If you’re using ropes instead, keep in mind not to tie the knots too tightly. They’ll limit the growth of the tree and strangle it.
- The best woods to make the platform with are oak, pine, or spruce. Also, if possible, place rubber bumpers wherever there is a contact point between the structure and the tree.
- Make sure the platform is larger than the actual tree house to form a deck. Raise railings by pegging wooden bars at regular intervals, crisscrossed by ropes or wooden rods.
- Follow the platform by lining exterior plywood sheets on it for flooring.
- It is safe and prudent to put together the walls on the ground before fastening them in place. You can also carve out the windows and doors before you nail them to the platform.
- Once the walls are put up, using an expanse of batten and shingles, place the roof and make it safe and secure in place with nails and rope.
- If you consider the wooden-board ladder to be unsafe, you can nail a rope ladder to the platform that rolls out right up to the ground.
- Also, spread sand or sawdust at the bottom of the tree to cushion in anticipation of a fall to avoid injury.
Maintenance and repair is the key for preservation of the simple tree house ideas. Keep track of the growth of tree and tack in creaks or broken wood immediately for safety. In case of rains, check for rot and signs of weakness and frequent swaying.
Simple Tree House Ideas Considerations
- Use pressure treated lumber for all framing materials. Enclose platforms with sides a minimum of 36 inches high.
- Pick good trees. Never use a branch less than 8-inches in diameter and don’t use branches that sway a lot in the wind. Branches that extend straight out from the trunk are weak. Use branches that angle up at a 45 degree angle or less.
- Attach framing to the tree using galvanized or coated 1/2-inch thick threaded rods, carriage bolts or lag bolts that will extend at least 8-inches into into the middle of the branch. Use joist hangers for joists and rafters.
- Make ladders out of 2-by-6 lumber and add hand railings for a good grip on both sides. Attach the ladder to the tree house and to the ground below so it can’t be moved.
- Unless you’re willing to build regular stairs, make access to the tree house through a trap door that won’t open past 90 degrees. The kids will go in the trapdoor which will then close by itself.
- There’s no need to be up 30 feet. Put the platform six to ten feet off the ground, but not much higher.
A Simple Tree House Ideas Platform
Start with a tree that has three or four branches that divide the trunk at a central crotch. Attach 2-by-6 lumber in a rough square using lag bolts. If spans will be longer than 6 feet, use 2-by-8 lumber. Add joists between the frame about every 16 inches and cover the frame with 3/4-inch plywood.
Add 2-by-4 rails no less than 3-feet above the platform with vertical 2-by-4s every 2 feet. Enclose the sides with 1/2-inch plywood. Add another frame above the platform for a roof or a lookout tower. A roof should have a slope to help it shed water. If you make the second story a lookout, add more rails with enclosed sides.
A Simple Tree House Ideas Between Two Trees
This easy to build simple tree house ideas uses two trees to make the platform. It’s a good way to build a simple tree house ideas if you don’t have a big tree with big branches to support the platform. You should choose trees with a minimum 10-inch diameter at the platform height.
Start with two, 2-by-8 ledger boards on each tree and bolt them to the tree using long carriage bolts. Spans greater than 10 feet require additional bracing. Drill holes through the board, into the trunk and out the board on other side. Attach the ledgers using 1/2-inch galvanized carriage bolts with nuts and washers. Brace the ledgers on each end with 2-by-6 lumber.
Add 2-by-8 joists between the ledgers every 16 inches. Cover the platform with deck boards or 3/4-inch plywood.
Option – Use a doubled 2-by-8 beam between the ledgers to hang swings from.
A Tree and a Post
You can still build a simple tree house ideas if you’ve only got one tree and it doesn’t have good branches at a reasonable height. Ten feet from the trunk, auger a 12-inch hole in the ground six feet deep. Stand a 24 foot 8-by-8 pressure treated post up in the hole, level it and temporarily brace it. Dump two bags of quick set concrete in the hole and add the water. Mix it up with a long stick. Dump in two more bags of concrete, add more water and mix again. Give it an hour to set up, then fill the hole in with dirt. Build your simple tree house ideas the same way as building a simple tree house ideas between two trees.
A Simple Tree House Ideas Around the Trunk
You’ve got a good tree with a great crown and lots of shade, but the branches are too high up. And the idea of digging a hole and putting in a post doesn’t appeal to you. That’s one way of doing it, but here’s another way.
Start by putting up two 8-foot long ledger boards on either side of the tree. Be sure the tree is at least 12 inches in diameter. These two boards will serve as a support beam for the rest of the structure. Add a 2-by-8 frame that sits on the ledger boards and brace the frame at each corner using 2-by-6 lumber.
Add joists on 16-inch centers and build the floor with deck boards or 3/4-inch plywood. Rails, sides and a roof complete the tree house.
Minimizing Tree Damage
- Build the simple tree house ideas in mid summer. The heavy spring flow of sap will have slowed greatly, but the tree will still have time to heal before winter. If you bore a hole and it turns out to be in the wrong place, fill the hole with exterior latex caulk to keep insects out.
- Bore as few holes as possible. Start with a minimal but sturdy frame that attaches to the tree, then build off of that. Attach the simple tree house ideas to the tree for stability as necessary, but don’t overdo it.
- Don’t cut away bark. The tree will grow around the wood, making it a part of the tree and adding strength to the structure.
- A rope over a branch is a great way to make a swing of just about any kind. Cut a piece of tire and nail over the branch, then attach the rope. That way the rope rubs the tire, not the branch.
Tree Houses: Simple Tree House Ideas
Simple Tree House Ideas have a special magic you just can’t get from a manufactured play-set. And the kids won’t care how much you spend on that expensive play set. If you’ve got the trees, a little bit of time and some spare elbow grease, make an easy to build simple tree house ideas with your kids. You’ll be surprised how much fun you have building it and every moment the kids spend in it will make it all worthwhile.
Credits and Resources for Simple Tree House Ideas
- Red Treehouse Photo by Udo Schröter at Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/nordelch/5699439286/in/photostream/
- Platform Simple Tree House Ideas Photo by M. Litty at Flickr: https:[email protected]/3593503487
- How to Build a Simple Tree House Ideas in the Backyard: http://www.popularmechanics.com/home/how-to-plans/how-to/a5490/how-to-build-a-treehouse/?page=3
- My Great Tree House Building Project: http://daggle.com/my-great-tree-house-building-project-299
- How to build a treehouse: http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-build-a-treehouse/