Building a zip line for children in your backyard is a fairly easy task, but it requires knowledge and preparation before you attempt to build it. The first concern is choosing the correct, safe location. Make sure that the open area your zip line passes over is free of shrubs or rocks and that the two structures the rope will be attached to are firmly implanted in the ground. Also check local ordinances to make sure your zip line is legal.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Things you need
- Rope cutter (utility knife)
- Tape measure
- Nylon rope
- Ski rope handle
Measure the distance between the two places where you will attach your rope and add 4 feet so it will be long enough for you to make the end knots large and tight. Cut your nylon rope to this length.
Attach the ski rope handle to the pulley, which rolls over the rope smoothly and will not slip off its track. Tie both ends of the handle to the pulley, and make sure the connection is tight and secure.
Loop the rope through the pulley, and then tie or secure the rope to both the start and the finish locations. Use nails and larger hooks to secure the rope rather than simply tying it around an object like a tree.
Tie a piece of rope to the bottom of the handle so that you can move it from one end of your children's zip line to the other. Make sure it is long enough to reach from the ground.
Tips and warnings
- The rope should be just high enough so that when your kids slide down the zip line, their feet do not quite touch the ground at its lowest point in the centre.
- Always have kids wear safety harnesses and helmets when using the zip line. The harness has a loop and hook that connects the rider to the zip line so he cannot drop to the ground.
- To prevent your kids from injuring themselves at the end of the zip line, pad the structure the line is tied to, or simply tell them to lift their legs and place their feet in front of them so they come to a stop with their feet on the structure.
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