How to Build a Backyard Tree House Zip Line | Simple Installation Guide
Building a tree house zip line is actually really simple, I'll explain. Because your tree house is already (hopefully) built into trees and the trees are holding their structural weight it is easy to just use the tree house as a platform and anchor the zip line kit directly to one of the trees. It can take as little as 30 minutes and will provide hours of fun for your kids. They'll also have the most epic tree house of all time.
The first step whether you've built a tree house already or not is to make sure your zip line anchor is sturdy. In most cases, your anchor will be the tree that you've built the tree house around. Zip line trees should be 12 inch diameter and attached to the main trunk of the tree, not the branches. You'll want to make sure the tree is in good condition and not dead, rotting or weak.
If you haven't built a treehouse yet, you'll want to design it so there's room for the zip line. This means that the zip line wire will need direct access to the tree. In addition to this, you'll want to have a zip line platform of some sort to launch from. This aspect is the most dangerous as launching from an elevated height requires the ability to simply jump off the treehouse which is generally the exact opposite of what you want to have if you don't have a zipline.
If your platform already has a fence, you may think about installing a gate mechanism which will open up the fence when zip lining, and closing it when playing normally.
From here, it is a standard zip line installation. Depending on your materials, you'll start at your starting anchor with a cable sling, which will attach to a turnbuckle. The turnbuckle will then attach to your main line. Your main line will then be tied off at your ending anchor.
Consider height change when building a treehouse with zipline as you may have to build an ending platform. For example we recommend a 3 to 6 foot drop per 100 foot of zip line. If your tree house is 10 feet above the ground, consider where the rider will end up after the ride. Check out our zip line calculator here.
One crucial aspect of treehouse ziplines are the riding accessories. Though a variety of options are available, we recommend using a harness unless the elevation is minimal. Harnesses provide the most safety as opposed to handle bars or a round seat.
Want to learn how to build the tree house too? Check out this video:
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