When building a playground, it's important to install posts firmly in the ground to ensure structural stability. To mount your supports as securely as possible, you'll want to dig holes about a foot deep and embed your posts in concrete. Here are some tips for how to get the best results.
1. Measure Center Lines
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The first thing you need to do before embedding posts is measure center lines for the spots where you'll be digging your holes. By measuring center lines, you will know where to dig holes and the exact measurement of each post. Keep in mind that each hole should be at least a foot in diameter and one foot deep. This is mainly to ensure the stability of your playground.
Using shallow holes will make the playground very unsafe, especially if adults will use it. Given the weight and size of adults, weaker structures can be hazardous. This is why you should dig holes at least one foot deep to ensure stability.
2. Use Post Anchors
For guaranteed playground safety, you should embed posts into the concrete and hold it with anchors. This eliminates the need to sink posts in concrete. With shallow anchors, even using concrete will not help. This is why it is important to support posts with metal anchors if possible. It is highly recommended that you support the playground posts, especially if it is on a wet surface.
It is very easy for a wet surface to break when exposed to excessive pressure. This means that your posts can break away easily when activities become intense at the playground.
3. Saddle the Posts
Another tip you should consider when embedding posts is saddling them. It is a good idea to saddle posts into anchors. This will go a long way in ensuring the durability of the posts. Saddling allows air space between the saddle and bottom of the post hence avoiding moisture retention. This makes it easy for posts to dry in case of rainfall.
The best way to saddle posts is using scraps of floor tiles that are approximately a quarter thick. You can also opt for a quarter-inch plywood scrap—the focus is on ensuring that the playground posts are as durable as possible. However, the quality of posts you use for this purpose also determines durability. It is highly recommended that you go for quality posts to ensure durability.
4. Drill Holes
It would help if you also drilled corresponding holes. Some posts have holes that make it possible for you to nail them into anchors. To ensure maximum reinforcement, it is essential to drill and bolt them. This method is mostly used in areas prone to natural disasters like flooding and hurricanes. Therefore, if your playground is located in such areas, it is a good idea to drill holes in posts and bolt them to anchors. This prevents them from being washed away.
Furthermore, bolting is also advantageous because it helps prevent vandalism. Thugs won't easily extract your posts and gain access to your playground. Consequently, the safety of playground users and the playground itself is tightened.
5. Avoid Rocky Spots
When embedding your posts, you should avoid rocky spots. Rocky spots make it difficult to drill holes deep enough to ensure stability. Even if you install a post after every eight inches, it is a good idea to adjust if you come across a rocky spot. The safety of your playground will be in jeopardy if some of the posts are not stable.
Continued use of these posts will cause crushes that can be catastrophic. This is why it is important to dig holes that are deep enough to ensure stability. Generally, a playground isn't safe on a rocky surface. Kids are more likely to get hurt when engaging in various fun activities. Therefore, the idea of having a playground in a rocky area can be risky. Instead of embedding posts on a rocky surface, it would help if you adjusted the playground's location.
6. Clamp for Solidity
It is also important to clamp the posts for solidity. By doing so, you will have a solid structure that can handle many people. You can also support the posts by mixing them with concrete. Use support materials to ensure that the posts are firmly in place. Furthermore, you can level the surrounding surface to establish clarity. This will help create a beautiful pattern around the playground. You can also add or remove spaces until you get proper alignment.
The use of concrete to solidify posts is a common thing. You can do so using equipment like concrete mixers and a wheelbarrow. Use a wheelbarrow or a large bucket to mix the concrete thoroughly.
Make that the concrete looks like an extra-thick milkshake, then pour it into the post holes. After that, wait for a few minutes, then place the posts. As much as the use of concrete has proven to be effective, those against it say that it is not safe for a playground setting.
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