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Old 11-05-2012, 01:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default drop in construction

i want to start building a drop in tower but have severely limited knowledge in woodworking. These are v.1 of the plans ive come up with, with the scale measured in feet. The grey boards represent 4x4s, pink is (obviously) the ramp, and all other colours are 2x4s. My main concern right now is stability. Given that the floor is 8 ft high supported by a 6x4 ft base, im worried about it falling over. The ground around here doesn't lend itself well to digging more than 1 ft. A possible solution is running chains from the top cross-beam to the ground/trees (there is a boardwalk/patio chains could be looped under). Im sure there are structural issues that could be improved as well.
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Old 11-05-2012, 02:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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How permanent is this structure going to be?

At the very least I would get a posthole digger and start asking questions on carpentry websites.

Looping chains around shallowly buried objects won't help your case much.

You might be able to get away with 1 ft of depth if you have the base secured to long, horizontal beams that are wider than 6 ft (if they are buried, then this width shouldn't be a problem, right?)

Your ramp support is inadequate. You'll want runners under the planks and you will want to connect the supports to each other.

There is a thread around here about a guy who was building a drop in... he used Google Sketch-up to model his plans.
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You will also want to place some bracing so the tower doesn't collapse from tipping forward or sideways. A beam on an angle top to bottom on each side would work. Not sure I explained that good enough...hope I did
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Old 11-05-2012, 03:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I may suggest looking around on local classifieds for scaffolding. You can sometimes find some that doesnt pass construction standards (but perfectly safe) for cheap from contractors.

Its easy up, easy down and easy to store. then you just have to make a ramp. Ive done this with two 5ft sections for a ten foot drop in. Usually the most money goes towards the Picks (planking) but you can make your own out of lumber and sheeting.

Just a suggestion to keep your options open



found this image to show you what i mean (not mine)

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Old 11-05-2012, 05:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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as for stability, i didnt think of connecting the vertical posts with buried beams. that would definitely help. i have sketchup downloaded and ill post amendments once i have it figured out.
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:21 PM   #6 (permalink)
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save yourself a lot of hassle and get these.

*at The Home Depot

they will help you tremendously if you want to build your own drop in.

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