Monday, April 15, 2013

Put a Swing on it

Our bottom deck has been looking sad ever since we moved in.  There's just not much to draw you down there - no pretty plants, nothing to do, just blah.

About a billion years ago I got a porch swing for a rental house I shared in college.  Once I moved out, the swing went into storage on our family farm.  I rediscovered it over Thanksgiving and stuffed in into the car on the drive home!

And then it sat on the deck through the winter.

Saturday we had the prettiest day I think we've had in five months, so we took advantage and did a few outdoor projects, including the swing!

What started as a simple project quickly took a turn to difficult.

The swing was a different width than the deck joists, so we couldn't just attached eye bolts and call it a day.  Instead, we cut 2x10's down to size and secured them three screws on each side as well as two metal plates.  The joists weren't plumb, so the cuts ended up being tricky.  We secured the new pieces to the deck with three screws on each side, as well as these metal thingos called strong-ties.  Let's just say that if something about this set-up collapses, this won't be it.

Next, the eye bolts were too fat for the chain or the carabiners we bought, so we ended up using two sizes of carabiners to attach everything.

We tried the swing at several heights, finally choosing one about 17" off the ground.  We also messed around with the tilt of the swing - you want it comfy but not so far back you feel like you'll fall out.

Finally, it was perfect!  Lucky jumped right up, and the whole family enjoyed the swing for an hour watching the sun set.  We're loving the bottom deck now, and the swing makes it more of a destination.  We just had to put a swing on it! 

Also, I'm thinking about painting it.  What do you think?  Yellow?  Turquoise?  Vintage green?  Or should I just stain it?  Here's some inspiration I found on pinterest:


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