Building your very own tree house is a fun experience and a fundamental part of growing up. The joy of creating something from nothing and the feeling of accomplishment is something we automatically crave, and this can be seen in children, when they express the wish to have a tree house. To make the most of this experience, ensure that you are involved in the build, so that you can plan safety features and do a lot of the difficult bits like using the power tools, but also make sure that your child feels involved and part of the project. Building the tree house together is part of the fun of having a tree house.
Deciding on the location is something you should be involved in, but let your child make the ultimate decision. There are several things to consider when choosing the perfect spot for your tree house. One of them is the availability of suitable trees. You can build a tree house within the crown of one strong tree using several large branches that can hold the base of the house. You can also build the tree house around the trunk of the tree. In this case the trunk of the tree is used to support the base, and the roof needn’t be too big as the tree serves as half a roof.
If you don’t have one large tree available, you may have three medium sized trees which have grown close together. The base of the tree house can be built around these tree trunks or you can use a combination of the branches and trunks to prop the base up with.
If there are no trees whatsoever available to you then you needn’t throw in the towel, since you can always build your own construct on which the house can stand. This is a very popular option, as a self-made construct has guaranteed stability. It does, however, also require more material.
Before we move on to what type of wood can be used and what size is recommended, we should talk about the height of the tree house. This should be based on the age of your child. If they’re still very young then a tree house that is slightly higher than yourself is best. This way your children are still in your reach. If your children are older and more adventurous, you could let them have a higher tree house. 8 foot is a good height, as it isn’t too high but is high enough to still have the benefit of being above ground in your own world.
For material, 2x6in pine planks for the base of the tree house, and 2x4in timber planks for the walls and the roof are recommended. The number of planks is dependent on the size of your tree house, but pine and timber are the best types of wood for the tree house, as they are strong, sturdy and easy to get your hands on. You’ll also need some coach screws with heavy square washers, as well as some hinges for the trap door.
It’s best to have several entry points to the tree house. So, a trap door with a safety rope or rope ladder, some windows one of them with a ladder going to it, and the official entrance with a wooden ladder should be included. Planning ahead is a key factor of building a successful tree house. To keep bad weather out and even to keep the too warm sun out, consider using wooden shutters for the windows. This also gives the tree house a more house like look. You can paint these shutters in bright and bold colours to create an eye catching look to the tree house.
For the inside of the tree house create some furniture for your child to enjoy. You can use some old drawers or a bedside cabinet or an old coffee table to give them somewhere to draw or play board games with friends. Alternatively, you can glue some wooden crates together to create the table. A large beanie bag is a great sitting option for them, as it provides comfort and is a fun chair to have, but you can also use some folding garden stools as they are light and easy to use.
A tree house is a great place for a child to enjoy some independence in a safe environment, that is exciting as it is something the child created themself. Let them plan the interior, but simply reign in their creativity if it gets too impractical. No matter how much they insist they don’t need a telly in a tree house, as tree houses are for adventures not watching TV.
Before you start constructing the tree house remember to do some research regarding the ultimate price of the construct, the tools you’ll need and the area you have to work with, and if in doubt ask a friend who is in construction or an expert for some advice.
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