How to Build a Wood Seesaw

A see-saw on a playground. image by Saskia Massink from

A see-saw is an outdoor plaything for kids that fits easily in most backyards. Because of the simplicity in design, building a see-saw is a fairly straightforward task that can be made with easy to find materials. Making the see-saw out of wood gives the construction a rustic look that will compliment the backyard. Using wood also allows for easy painting.

Drill a 9/16-inch hole in each of the four 20-inch wood planks. The holes should be 8 inches above the end of the board and centred in the middle of each plank

Line up the four planks so they are paired off, each pair 14 inches from the other. Slide the 1 1/2 by 3 1/2 inch plank (this will be the spacer plank) in between the pair members so it's flush on the ends, and align the spacer plank with the two holes in the plank pairs so a drilled hole would go through the centre of the width of the spacer plank. Mark where the holes would be on the spacer plank and drill through the marks with the 9/16 inch drill bit.

Dig a hole in the ground when the see-saw will be placed. The hole should be 7 inches deep and 14 inches wide.

Drive a carriage bolt through each plank pair and the spacer plank. At this point you should have two pairs of planks that have the spacer plank firmly in between. Each pair is held together by a bolt, and the two pairs are bridged across by the spacer plank. All ends of the wood should be flush and even.

Mix the cement as directed and pour it into the hole to it reaches the brim.

Place the connected plank pairs at the diameter of the hole. Allow the cement to dry.

Measure to the centre of the 9-foot plank and place the water pipe at that point, perpendicular to the plank. Mark the edges of the pipe.

Place the saddle brackets over the pipe marks, each bracket at opposite ends of the plank's width, and screw them in lightly.

Place the pipe underneath the saddle and continue screwing in the saddle brackets until they hold the pipe firmly. The pipe should be sticking out equally on both sides of the plank.

Drill a 9/16-inch hole in the each of the cemented plank pairs, about 4 inches from the top. Drive the remaining two carriage bolts through these new holes.

Lower the plank into the plank pairs so the pipe rests comfortably in between the spaces between the plank and on top of the carriage bolts.

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