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swing in the yard with child

Decorate and Enjoy your Yard with a Rope Swing

Don't be a Loser

A rope swing is a great way to bring both physical activity and old-fashioned whimsy to your yard. In the yard, it's easy to set up a rope swing to hang from a tree, from the eaves, or a custom swing frame. It is sure to provide a comfortable way of relaxing in the garden, at the cottage, or on the deck. Share the joy of swinging through a local breeze during some hot, humid summer months.

There are so many styles available in yard swings, from the classic wooden swings to European wrought iron, to ultra comfortable all-weather wicker swings ~ it will be a challenge to choose from among them. There's something so comforting about the gentle rocking of a swing, the perfect place to relax away the stress of your day. A great example of a patio swing available now from our affiliate is the Jennings Traditional 4-Foot Swing in Unfinished Solid Fir.

If you don't have a safe place to hang your patio swing, have a look at the many styles of free-standing swings available to place on a deck or lawn. A 1 inch thick manila or sisal rope will be easy to hold on to and very safe. However, be aware that manila has a tendency to rot and over time could break, putting someone at risk. Choose sisal for longevity. Coat the ends of the rope with rubber or whipping to prevent fraying. Priming the seats and then adding multiple coats of paint is also a good idea.

For a more adventurous look, when creating a swing with 2 ropes, you can also use mountaineer's climbing rope: Dynamic Rock Climbing Rope It's quite strong and weather-resistant, but with standard diameters of only 1/2 inch or less, they're not such good hand-holding ropes.

More do-it-yourself tips:

Half of our work is finding the perfect branch. We climb up in the tree and test several spots, making sure it's a good swing and that there's enough space for swinging without banging into the tree trunk or a fence... Place your ladder up against the tree branch and climb up to where you want to place the rope. Make sure it is far enough away from the tree that the kids won't swing on it and slam back in to the tree. Thinner limbs are less sturdy: try to get a thick one which will sturdily hold a child's (or an adult's!) weight without bouncing and sapping energy. And choose a live branch as the dead wood branches will deteriorate.

Attaching the rope to the tree branch with a little more width at the tree branch than at the swing provides more lateral stability. Without this, the swing may tend to twirl or rotate in motion. Adjusting the height of the swing can also be a bit tricky: of course the seat should be level, and the swinger's feet should just be able to reach the ground. Too low, and some injuries could occur by kids' feet dragging along or by the ground friction pulling someone out of the swing. (Of course, swingers should try to keep feet raised through the ride).

Cut off any excess rope so that the rope does not touch the ground.
For wood parts: sand all the edges, then prime it with an outdoor wood primer. Have your child decorate the swing with acrylic paints (freehand or with stencils), then cover it with a coat of protective clear varnish.

Try the rope swing out yourself first. Swing on it by sitting on a knot. Then try the rope swing again by standing on one of the knots. Kids will want to play with the rope swing in many different ways such as sitting on it, standing on it, etc.

Features of Yard Rope Swings

  • Fade and mildew-resistant rope and fabrics
  • A variety of choices in color, style, size, and materials
  • Safety first for the kids
  • the most romantic place in your home, patio, or garden
  • hanging porch swings require strong overhead support
  • a do-it-yourself (DIY) swing can feature a cut board, a round circle, a tire, a belt, or a log for the seat.
  • free-standing swings are available for deck or garden landscape. An example is the Free-standing A - Frame Yard Swing which is a good size for 2 persons.
On the Deck Recliner

Double Recliner on the Deck
Special supports may be needed in the yard or on the deck to support the swing, where there are no trees or eaves nearby. Consider where you can put some conveniences like food, drink, stereo out here. A nice Expanse Lounger can be found at the RopeSwings.com store here. Have a look and imagine what it will do for your porch or yard.

Rope Swings Materials

Materials and Construction
A one inch rope has a working load of well over 800 pounds. This is a big rope, easy to hold onto and safe, and makes a great climbing rope too. The higher and longer the rope the bigger the ride. With a 16 inch disc seat, even big kids (adults) can ride. Take this for example: residential disc seat for rope swing. Although only 12 inches, it's sturdy and comes in a variety of colors. Some single-rope swings only offer a 3/8th to 1/2 inch rope which may be made of nylon, plastic or cotton -- not ideal since they stretch. Also, kids have difficulty holding the smaller ropes.

yard tree swing

Tree Swing for the Yard
This has the potential for real exhilarating fun in your own yard. A single-rope swing has a tendency to rotate so a rider will face different directions while riding. The swings with two ropes give directional stability.
Pawley's Island Frame

Frame Set for Pawley's Island Swing
You can be a do-it-yourself type without doing it all yourself. Choose a frame first, like this one: The Original Pawleys Island Rope Swing Stand. Then choose a swing to go with it. Make sure you match the dimensions and weight limit.
Yard Swing for Baby

Yard Swings for the Family
Can provide a thrill for baby or grandma alike (just don't use the same size). Great for naps, relaxing or enjoying the great outdoors. Choose this Bucket Swing Chair for the safety of your youngest swing rider.

Bench construction
Notice the bench design here, similar to the one below the top logo bar on this page. The A-Frame is anchored to a flat surface on the ground. The flat surface keeps the construction simpler. And anchoring the frame ensures that any amount of energetic swinging won't result in toppling the frame itself. Here the frame provides not a lot of swing due to it's short rope length, and also not much lateral support, should the swinging momentum build up side to side. These are risks to consider, increasing as the rope length, and potentially the swing force, increase. One available now is the Weatherproof Wood Home Patio Garden Decor Bench Swing by Furniture Creations.

Tree Challenges
Notice the placement of the ropes here. On a branch which is not perfectly horizontal, the two ropes will have different lengths, introducing a yaw effect into the swinging motion. Instead of straight back, straight forward, it becomes right back, right forward in this case. This effect is reduced when the branch is high enough, so in fact in this photo, it wouldn't drastically affect the ride.
Single rope, braced

Rope Solutions
This cool solution leaves a single heavy rope hanging from the beam (actually a pair of them in this example). But it's got a brace preventing it from twisting, ensuring the rider always faces forward. The brace, a second rope hung from the beam, attaches to the main rope a few feet from the beam (see image where rope forms a Y-junction). What does Tarzan do when the vine twists him in flight? You don't have to find out, if you build a solution like this!





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