DIY Slide

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  • Learn how to make DIY playground slides for your kids to enjoy 
  • From wood to screws and paint, find out what materials you need 
  • We’ve given you a list of tools required for the project, too 
  • Our easy to follow guide will have you building in no time

Are you looking for a great way to give your kid a place to play in the yard without having to spend a fortune on a precut, predesigned playset?

Do you enjoy getting your hands dirty and working on projects for your little one yourself?

Would you like to build DIY playground slides for your kids?

If you’ve ever wanted to put together a DIY playground slide for your little ones, you’re in the right place.

In this article, we’ll take you through every step of the process so you can build a slide that your kids will enjoy playing on for a long time to come.

But what if you’ve never built anything like this before? A project like the one we found on YouTube below (a DIY slide for your child) is generally considered an intermediate job. You do need to know your way around power tools and understand how to cut and measure wood, but you don’t have to be a contractor to get it all put together.

If you’ve had some experience before with at-home construction projects and you feel confident in your ability to keep your little one safe on a handmade item, then read on to learn more about this fun and exciting project!

Materials Needed

Stained wood

  • check
    (2) 3-1/2” by 39” wood pieces - A
  • check
    (6) 3-1/2” by 6” wood pieces - B
  • check
    (2) 3-1/2” by 6-1/2” wood pieces - C
  • check
    (2) 3-1/2” by 38” wood pieces - D

Painted wood

  • (3) 5-1/2” by 16” wood pieces - E
  • (1) 5-1/2” by 14-1/2” wood pieces - F
  • (2) 1-1/2” by 27” wood pieces - G
  • (2) 1-1/2” by 14-1/2” wood pieces - H
  • (1) 14-1/2” by 30” wood pieces - I

Other

  • ¾” by ½” zinc angle braces
  • 1-1/4” wood screws
  • Satin polyurethane
  • Wood stain
  • Paint and primer

Tools Needed

playground slides
  • Jigsaw
  • Circular saw
  • Compass
  • Router
  • 2 inch hole saw
  • Sander
  • Drill with driver bits
  • 8 inch sliding T-bevel
  • Carpenter’s square
  • Clamps
  • Paintbrush
  • Wood glue

*HOW-TO GUIDE (w/ PDF)*

Follow the directions below to learn how to make a toddler-safe slide for considerably less than the cost of purchasing a precut and premade one. These are not steps that should be performed by a beginner. You should understand how to use all of the power tools on the list above and should be very confident in your ability to put together a slide for your little one. For further help and information, be sure you check out this PDF to help you better understand the pieces of lumber you’ll need to complete this project.

1. Take a look at the lumber listed above in the materials chart. If your lumber is not precut by the hardware store to these sizes already, use the jigsaw and circular saw to cut the pieces to the proper size.

2. Using 120-grit and 180-grit sandpaper, sand the wood so that it is smooth and free from splinters.

3. Use a compass to draw the curved part at the top of one of the slide legs onto one of the pieces of lumber marked A on the list above. Cut this out using your jigsaw, then space out the holes at the top of the slide and cut these out with a hole saw.

4. Repeat this process for the other leg with the other A piece of lumber.

5. Draw an arch for the top of the slide sides on the lumber marked D on the list above. Use your compass to draw the shape and then cut it out with your jigsaw on both pieces of lumber.

6. Sand and then stain the pieces of wood you have already cut. When the stain is dry, add polyurethane. You may need to sand and repeat this process once depending on how it comes out the first time.

7. Cut the pieces of lumber marked E and F if needed. Round the edges of the F piece using your router.

8. Sand, prime, and paint all steps, including the top step, before you continue to work with them.

9. Sand the pieces of lumber marked G and H on the list above. Cut as needed.

10. Assemble the braces on the sides of the G and H pieces of lumber. These pieces should form a frame for your slide.

11. Sand lumber part I and attach to the frame to form the complete slide. Sand down the sharp corners as needed.

12. Prime and paint the slide and its assembly.

13. Position the lumber spacers marked B on the list above and clamp them together on the inside of each leg of the slide.

14. Position the steps marked E on the proper side of the slide using clamps, then drill them into place.

15. Continue this process with remaining spacers and steps as needed, but don’t put on the top step yet.

16. Drill pilot holes into the slide assembly and screw it into the slide frame.

17. Use the clamps and drilled pilot holes to ensure the proper placement of the slide on the slide frame. Drill the slide into place securely on both sides of the frame.

18. Place the top step by finding the angle of the steps using your T-bevel. Slide it up the leg until it is on top of the slide, then mark the place where the bottom of the top step should rest. Do this for both sides of the slide.

19. Place angle plates on the bottom of the top step and then place it in the correct position based on the marks you just made in the previous step.

20. Screw the top stop into place so that the rounded edge is facing the slide and the flat edge is facing the side the other steps are on.

21. Test the slide for security before letting your little one play on it.

Don't Forget! Safety First...

If you feel as though you have confidently completed the project above, there may be a few things you should double-check on before you let your child play on the slide. Take a look at this list of last-minute considerations to keep in mind when your little one is going to play on your DIY slide project:

  • Be sure all the wood has been sanded. This will prevent any splinters from becoming a hazard for your child.
  • Be sure the slide is painted and/or stained. This is also handy for preventing splinters as well as for ensuring the longevity of the wood.
  • Be sure none of the screws or nails are exposed. Keep your child safe from scrapes, cuts, and puncture wounds!
  • Double-check the weight limit of the slide. Place weights on it or use heavy items from around the house to make sure it can support your little one.
  • Be sure to position the slide on level ground. Your child will be much safer sliding on a slide that is level than one that is wobbly.

After you’ve double-checked all of the safety considerations listed above, your little one should be ready to play on your DIY slide right away!

Conclusion

Do you feel ready to make your own slide for your little one? If so, you’re in good company! Lots of parents take on this type of DIY project and enjoy getting more involved with their kids’ backyard toys at the same time. If you’re planning to tackle this project, here are some benefits you may get from making your own slide instead of buying a premade one:

  • You’ll get to do something creative. It’s always fun to stretch your construction skills and get hands-on when making something for your family. A project like this one is sure to be well-appreciated, which can feel great, too.
  • You’ll be sure the slide is right for your child. You won’t have to worry about anything being lower-quality than you want when you purchase all the materials and do all the work yourself.
  • You can choose the color and design. You won’t feel limited by the options you can find on the market, and you’ll have tons of possibilities when making aesthetic decisions for your slide, too.

Of course, there are some negatives to choosing a DIY wooden slide project instead of buying something premade, too:

  • You’ll need time to get the job done. You’ll have to be sure you have at least a couple of days available to work your way through this type of project.
  • It may be more expensive. Depending on the type of materials you buy, you may end up spending more than you would on something like a lightweight plastic slide.
  • It’s a lot of effort for something your child will outgrow. You may not feel like going to this much trouble for something your little one won’t be able to use for too long in the grand scheme of things.

This is a fun DIY project for anyone with some existing skills. If it’s the right project for you, have fun building your new slide!

*MORE* DIY Slide Videos:

Check out these awesome DIY tutorial videos we found on YouTube for detailed, step-by-step documentation! These dads have made awesome DIY slides for their little ones:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JeTY2TVAsEk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-09Flnk_qQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3g3CkTWxU3Q

Additional Research:
https://www.lowes.com/creative-ideas/woodworking-and-crafts/childrens-slide/project
https://www.lowes.com/creative-ideas/pdf/ChildrensSlide_ProjectDiagramCuttingList.pdf

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Virginia R. Samuel
Editor-In-Chief
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About The Author

Virginia R. Samuel is a full-time working mother and the Editor in Chief of ABCKidsINC.  She has worked as a ghost writer for a variety of online sites as well as a research writer in the fields of breastfeeding and early childhood development, among other childcare-related subjects. Virginia presently loves her editorial work on ABCKidsINC, and hopes that the information and articles she has crafted over the years will be beneficial to other moms and dads who are just starting out on their parenting adventure.

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