Swing Set: Fix it or trash it?

When we bought this house, one of the selling points was a “play structure”. Turns out it was faded and rusty, and I declared that we would trash it ASAP. But we had plenty of yard space and it sat over in the side yard, gathering cobwebs and weeds. Since there isn’t a direct window looking out on it, it didn’t really impinge on my consciousness very often. Now that we actually have a kid and I spend a lot more time at home, attempting to fix it up actually sounds like a potentially fun challenge. But is it beyond salvaging? Here it is, and please ignore the crazy plant life around it as best you can…

Sing Set

So we have a metal frame with very rusty bolts and once-shiny paint in various stages of fading. From left to right there is a swing, a rope ladder, a “trapeze”, a glider, and a plastic slide.

swing and ladder

The swing chain definitely needs to be replaced at the minimum, and a quick internet search reveals that I can probably get a sling-style swing complete with vinyl-coated chain for possibly as low as $15. The rope ladder is pretty gross looking, and in fact doesn’t look to be original to the set, seeing how it’s attached:

rope ladder attachment

the trapeze and glider both look like they just need some cleaning and a good coat of paint. The slide seems a little unstable the way it’s currently attached… I’d probably have to replace the bolts at a minimum:


Poking around online it looks like I can get a similarly sized metal swing set for maybe as low as $100. I’m not sure how good the quality would be, but then I’m not sure how good the quality of this thing would be even after I fixed it up. When you add up a new swing and ladder, several cans of spray paint and possibly primer and sealer, and various replacement bolts and steel wool and who knows what else, this project might end up being more than $100 anyway. So I guess this comes down to a) whether I think it’s even possible to fix it up, and more importantly b) will I have fun attempting to do it? I guess at the bare minimum I can clean it off and see if the rusty bolts will even budge. I can pretty much scrap the whole project if I get tired of it anyway. 🙂


Posted on September 3, 2013, in outdoors and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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