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How to Build a Tree House with One Treeby HomeRepairExpert.com
At one time or another, almost every child dreams of having a tree house. If you have only one tree on your property capable of supporting a house, your tree house will need to have a small footprint. However, this doesn't mean you can't make a tree house just right for spending long afternoons reading books or playing games with friends.
Things You'll Need
- Measuring tape
- 3 beams, 2 by 6 inches
- 15 beams, 2 by 4 inches
- 4 plywood sheets, 48 by 72 inches by 1/2 inch
- 1 plywood sheet, 48 by 72 inches by 3/4 inch
- Box of 3-inch wood screws
- 9 lag screws
- Power saw
- Power drill
Measure and Cut
Step 1Find an area in your tree where you can anchor your tree house to three points relatively level with one another. This might be on three limbs, the trunk and two points of a bent limb or any other arrangement that results in a triangle.
Step 2Measure all three sides of the triangle. Cut your 2-by-6 beams to match the length of each side of the triangle.
Step 3Cut three of your 2-by-4 beams to each match the length of each side of your triangle.
Step 4Cut the remaining 2-by-4 beams to 5 feet in length.
Floor and Ceiling
Step 1Arrange your 2-by-6 beams in a triangle corresponding to the triangle you planned in the tree. Lay them on the 2-inch sides, and screw them together with two screws at each end (for a total of four screws at each joint, two going in each direction).
Step 2Place the triangle on your sheet of 3/4-inch plywood, and outline it with a pencil. Cut out the floor along the outline.
Step 3Mount the triangle of plywood on your frame using one screw in each corner and an additional screw for every 2 feet of beam length.
Step 4Arrange three 2-by-4 beams (the same as you did with the 2-by-6 beams) in a triangle, and assemble them as you did the larger beams.
Step 5Place the triangle on a sheet of 1/2-inch plywood. Outline, cut and mount the plywood to this triangle just as you did with the thicker wood.
Step 1Construct a rectangle using two of the 5-foot lengths of beam and two beams of the same length as one another (i.e. the matching pairs you cut to fit the length of your triangle sides).
Step 2Cut a piece of 1/2-inch plywood so that it is as wide as the custom length side of the square and 70 inches long.
Step 3Mount the plywood sheet on the rectangular frame. The 60-inch-long sides should be flush, and the sheet should overlap on one side by 6 inches and on the other by 4.
Step 4Screw the plywood sheet in place using one screw at each corner and one for every 2 feet of beam length.
Step 5Repeat steps one through four for the other two walls.
Step 6Cut a hole 2 feet wide by 4 feet high in one wall to serve as a door. If you want, you can cut out windows (usually 1 or 2 feet square) in the same or other faces.
Step 1Mount the floor in place using three lag screws per beam. Once mounted, test the floor and mounting using your adult body weight. If it's secure under your weight, it should be safe for your kids.
Step 2Hoist up the smallest wall frame, and set it in place with the 6-inch overlap pointing toward the ground. Use the overlap to mount it on the floor, using two screws at each corner and two more screws per 2 feet of beam length.
Step 3Hoist up and mount the other two sides just as you did with the smallest.
Step 4Hoist up the ceiling panel. It should nest in place within the top overlaps. Mount the walls to the ceiling panel with one screw at each corner.
Step 5Encourage your kids to decorate their tree house with paint, scrap carpet, handmade art or anything else they can think of.
Tips and Warnings
- You will also need to see to a means of ascent up the tree. This could be a rope ladder, regular ladder, cargo web or even series of rock-climbing holds.
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