Hints & Tips for Climbing FramesAlan
Hints & Tips for Climbing Frames – since 2003 we have focused on selling wooden climbing frames, with a Display Centre, a large stock holding all year round and a full installation service.
Based on our experience, these tips may help you to choose the right climbing frame for your needs.
With such a huge choice of climbing frames, narrow down your search by deciding on a budget range.
In the domestic market, there is no brand premium so you get what you pay for. A cheaper climbing frames will be cheaper because it uses thinner and lower grade materials.
If you have a fixed space available then this will also help to narrow down your choice of climbing frames.
Most manufacturers offer some flexibility in the lay-out of the main components, while premium brands use a modular system so there is more flexibility with the shape and footprint.
Choose a deck height (and accessories) that will continue to challenge your children in the future rather than something they can use easily now.
These are the standard deck height for the UK market;
- 1.0m (3ft)
- 1.2m (4ft)
- 1.5m (5ft)
- 2.1m (7ft)
- Remember to allow a safe area around high risk activities.
- For commercial installations the regulations specify 2m around the entire equipment.
- For domestic installations there is no regulation but common sense plus the 2m rule should suffice.
- It is essential to use concrete (Postmix) in commercial applications.
- We recommend that you check all the fittings regularly. This is especially important soon after the first period of use when the structure settles down
Do your children favour climbing, sliding, swinging, playing in dens . . . ?
- Read the instructions don’t just look at the diagrams!
- Get a friend to assist, they can help to; reduce the build time, solve problems, support the frame, lift the heavier items
- Our metal climbing frames use galvanised steel so they are maintenance free
- All of our wooden climbing frame manufacturers use pressure treated timbers (see below) so they are maintenance free*
- When locating your climbing frame under certain trees remember that sap, aphids and leaf fall can make extra work
- To clean your climbing frame accessories use a mild detergent, warm water & a sponge, then rinse off with plenty of fresh water
Cracks & Splits (Shakes) in Wood
Roundwood structures (e.g. tp Sherwood range) use young wood which is much more prone to shakes but provided a shake does not exceed 3% of the circumference or continues through to the centre of the timber then the structure will not be affected. Sawn timber will be less prone to shakes but here you should look out for the timber grade and finish.
A lower grade timber will be cheaper but usually have a higher knot count, a wider grain and a rougher finish. A higher-grade timber will be more expensive but have a low knot count, a tight grain and a smoother finish.
These are natural features of any timber and will vary in size depending on ambient temperature and humidity.
Since July 2004 timber products have had to be pressure treated with a non-toxic, water based solution (e.g. Tanalith E). This has been in use for more than 10 years and is an EU approved alternative to the older arsenic based preservatives, which have been banned from use in domestic and residential applications.
The current preservatives can sometimes leave a light green stain on new timbers, this will fade with time. A light mould can sometimes develop as the preservative dries in storage, we try to avoid this by storing on ventilated racks but it is harmless and can be brushed off.