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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Who has built one? What do you wish you did differently? My wife ordered a kit for the kids for a couple hundred bucks: https://www.mindware.orientaltrading.com/night-riderz-100-foot-zipline-with-led-lights-a2-68008.fltr. It's not perfect, but it'll work for the kids.

Seems to be OK, but after looking at it, I'd have done it a bit differently. Still might upgrade it down the line and piece one together. This particular kit has a 200 lbs rating.

I have a tree on one end for the starting anchor point.

Nothing on the other end, but, it's a pretty substantial drop in height in the yard, so I needed to build a structure. Instructions state the max attachment point drop over 100' should be 54". This means that my "lower" attachment point is still ~10' in the air (I used a laser level at night to get reference marks on the tree and post).

I sunk a pair of 16' long 6x6 posts 4' into the ground, concreted in, approx 5' apart. Connected them up top with a 4x6, through-bolted with 5/8" galv machine-head bolts.

I sunk another pair of 6x6s 4' into the ground, concreted in, ~8-9 feet behind these. I have 1/4" cable running from a through-eyelet at the top of the tall posts down to this second pair. Cables each have a turnbuckle on them.

The zipline cable has a short 'loop' cable around the horizontal 4x6 which attaches to one side of a turnbuckle. Other side of the turnbuckle attaches to the 3/16" zipline cable. On this end of the cable there is a spring, ~5-6' long.

Built out from the 6x6s is a ~5.5' x 12' platform. Essentially built pretty close to decking code, and WAY overbuilt for kids (or even adults) to be dropping down onto. I'm pretty close to finishing up this platform, but rained today and I ran out of 2" screws.

The next thing I'll need to do is build something next to the tree so they can climb up onto the handle/seat.

4' deep -- check!





Attaching tree -- you can see it's higher up on a hill.



Backstory -- I was REALLY hungover the day I dug the first pair of holes, by hand. I failed to plan the location of the BACK set of posts.I paid for it the next day by having to dig a chunk of "wall" out of my basically abandoned detention pond.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Love my neighbors. :vs_laugh:





Recessed holes for the nuts & washers? This high in the air? And beveled edge on the 6x6? Yeah, overkill. But it looks better.

The eye-bolt basically functions as a level. If it slides forward, I'm too high. If it slides backwards, I'm too low. Can do the same thing with a couple washers and some string.

2x4 is temporary, and level. A spot to rest the 4x6 while it's being attached.



This was how I got my new Milwaukee M18 drill/impact driver set! :devil3: "Sorry honey, my drill just doesn't have the power to get through this stuff!" In reality, it would have made it had I did a little at a time, backed out the bit, cleared the drill bit flutes etc. But yeah, it was stuck good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Starting to take form.




Layout lines for my 4x4 posts. In hindsight, I should have aligned them with the INNER edges of the 6x6s, you'll see why in the next post. STAY TUNED!

I also hate how cheap, fragile, and WARPED/BENT these 1x2 stakes are that you buy. Makes me want to build some myself out of better wood or something.







Camera tricks -- I don't know why that right front 4x4 looks so wonky. I assure you it's plumb.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Now you see why I wish I had aligned the 4x4s closer together. Then I could have built the beam with a little over hang, maybe 45° cut the bottoms, it would just look better. It's still not going anywhere. Simpson screws, hurricane ties, anti-rack blocking, joist hangers etc.




Have about half the 5/4 x 6 deck boards screwed down so far before I ran out of screws and daylight. Now with all the rain today, I'll probably have to re-snap my lines. :vs_laugh:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Oh -- and the best part. Spending time with the kids, teaching them how to build things, how to be safe, why a "triangle" is called a square, why fractions are important, and so many more things.:vs_cool:

They equally loved the Milwaukee Fuel Surge impact driver. LOL

Argyle sweater. Polo shirt. Gym shorts. Soccer socks. Cowboy boots. Oh to be 6 years old again.









Both of them were dying to have their own pencils to use.









Not to be a cornball -- but here's what makes everything worthwhile.




Kid next door looking on. Love the expression.
 

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My Dad made us one in about '68. He was an iron worker so he had access to cable, come-alongs and snatch blocks.
He strung it between 2 Doug Fir trees. It spanned over a small seasonal creek in a gully.
On the high end, we climbed on top a 55 gal barrel, put our foot in the loop on the rope and shoved off. We rode until we bottomed out on the side. Lots of fun and no injuries- at least none worth the trip to town....
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Soil looks pretty cohesive.

I'd probably have wanted to space the uprights further apart...
Yeah the soil is extremely solid/stable.

What would be the reason for the uprights further apart? In my "planning", I was going for a distance far enough to support an adequate sized platform below, but not too far that it would make too long of a long span for the 4x6 beam.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Simple platform, but works well. I thought about adding 45s between the 4x4 posts and 4x6 beam, but honestly, it would just be for aesthetics at this point. I've pushed it side-to-side, had 8 people on top of it, it's going nowhere.

Zipline all seems solid too. Going to mark the cables with some tape. Make sure that they are always in alignment. I'll be able to detect any slipping...but there shouldn't be.

Might not even build a loading platform. Kids are having a good time taking turns pulling each other UP to the starting tree.






 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yeah the soil is extremely solid/stable.

What would be the reason for the uprights further apart?
Less chance of a kid at high velocity bashing some appendage into it.
Ah gotcha! Yeah they don't come anywhere near the posts due to the cable loop around the 4x6, tturnbuckle, and space the braking spring (even fully compressed) takes up.
 
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