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Old 11-08-2016, 09:25 AM   #1
Chad_E
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Default Playset Rejuvenation

My youngest daughter just turned 3 this past Saturday. My wife and I decided it was time to upgrade our backyard. I was not looking forward to purchasing a new playset. They are proud of them. Well, through the grapevine I find a used one. A guy that I used to cut, rake and bale hay for during my highschool and early college years has two boys that have outgrown theirs. He was wanting to get rid of it and I was "happy" to help him do just that. From the limited research I've done this playset is a Rainbow Play System Turbo Castle, Package II Loaded. He told me that they paid $3,300 for it new about 7 years ago. I was able to pick it up for $500. I thought that was a fair price considering the shear amount of material in this structure. It is a very well made playset. Took 4 of use to disassemble it into manageable pieces and load it on the trailer. My plan is to break it down, nearly piece by piece, and clean it up. I will be sanding all the wood and resealing it. There will be some pieces that need replacing as well.
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Old 11-08-2016, 10:07 AM   #2
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I brought the playset to the house on Sunday and spent some time on it Sunday evening and yesterday.

Here is a picture of the A frame cleaned up and ready for staining. I think this sucker might clean up pretty well.
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Old 11-08-2016, 10:10 AM   #3
Codie
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we did the same several years ago but we just sprayed it down with bleach and power washed it and then re-stained after it dried and it lasted great for about 5-6 years until we sold it for $100 last year. MUCH better than spending $3,000 and having to put the entire thing together
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Old 11-08-2016, 10:14 AM   #4
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I considered pressure washing it as well and still may. I was worried about it grooving the wood too much and increase the chance of splinters. Maybe I'm overthinking it? (I am an engineer after all...)
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Old 11-08-2016, 11:42 AM   #5
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I think the pressure washer should be fine. It's how they do decks and you walk on them.
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Old 11-08-2016, 12:50 PM   #6
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Buy a gallon of deck cleaner at homer depot put in a sprayer and spray it down then power wash, and seal. it will look new.
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Old 11-08-2016, 01:08 PM   #7
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Pressure washing it will leave the boards looking kinda furry.
Keep going with the sander. It's more work ... because it does a better job.
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Old 11-21-2016, 08:38 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Texastaxi View Post
Pressure washing it will leave the boards looking kinda furry.
Keep going with the sander. It's more work ... because it does a better job.
It is going slow, but going still. With the days being short and the weekends busy, time to work on this project has been at a premium.

Many of the pieces have quite a bit of mildew and algae growth on them. The belt sander doesn't think to highly of the algae and can really slow things down. So first step is to clean those pieces up. We use Oxiclean and a scrub brush...works pretty good. Here is a before and after of one of the railings to give you an idea of the cleanup.
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After cleaning up the pieces I break them down to individual pieces, sand and reassemble. Here is the pile that has formed from this process.
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Yesterday after returning from an overnight stay in San Antonio we cleaned up the last few pieces left so they are ready for sanding. Then we proceeded to start staining those that had already been sanded. Although I still have quite a bit to do, I think this is going to turn out quite nice.
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Old 11-21-2016, 01:12 PM   #9
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That thing's gonna look like new, when you're done!
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Old 11-21-2016, 04:31 PM   #10
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Looking great!
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Old 12-05-2016, 09:51 AM   #11
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Rain really slowed me down this weekend. Before seeing the forecast, I had planned on completing the staining process this weekend. Unfortunetly, with each piece taking 4+ hours to dry, I wasn't able to finish. Getting close with all the big stuff.

I have a few pieces that need some help. One piece is rotting and either needs to be stabilized or replaced. Anyone ever stabilized a piece of rotting wood? Is it a pain to do so? Plan on looking into that in the coming days.

Also, I need to figure out something with the original ropes. They appear to be in pretty bad shape. Probably need to replace them, but no one in La Grange carries this size rope. Haven't been to a Lowe's or HD in a while. Anyone know if they carry large rope? Probably looking at 1 1/2"
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Old 12-05-2016, 03:05 PM   #12
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I'm glad I'm only reading about this.
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Old 12-05-2016, 08:53 PM   #13
Bill in San Jose
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If your kid will be climbing on it I'd replace a piece if it's bad. My thinking, anyway.

1-1/2" X 150' Unmanila Rope AKA Promanila is $225 on amazon, maybe they sell it in smaller lengths.
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Old 12-06-2016, 08:02 AM   #14
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That's a lot of work but I like the effort. I would have opted for light pressure washing and then stain, lol.

Replace anything that is rotten and I think you can find that rope at a big box store, Maybe even an Ace Hardware but I would shop price before I purchased.
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Old 12-06-2016, 08:40 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill in San Jose View Post
If your kid will be climbing on it I'd replace a piece if it's bad. My thinking, anyway.

1-1/2" X 150' Unmanila Rope AKA Promanila is $225 on amazon, maybe they sell it in smaller lengths.
Thanks Bill. There are a few reasons for simply trying to stabilize. First, the piece is not rotted all the way through, only along the edge of one side. IF it can be stopped the overall integrity of the piece is still in good shape. Second, the piece is not a critical structural piece of the set. Lastly, Rainbow (the maker of the set) is smart enough to not use standard sized wood. So if I try and replace (which I still may), I'd have to get someone to strip it down to size. My tool cabinet does not have the needed equipment to do so.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike View Post
That's a lot of work but I like the effort. I would have opted for light pressure washing and then stain, lol.
After the number of hours I've sanded, I'm starting to wonder if I should have done just that. However, the two pieces that I did lightly pressure wash did not come out good at all. I think I still went the correct route even though its been a lot of work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SAC View Post
I'm glad I'm only reading about this.
You still might get a call soon when I need to set this sucker back up. It is not a one, two or even three person job. Some of these pieces are no joke!

Last edited by Chad_E; 12-06-2016 at 08:42 AM.
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Old 12-15-2016, 08:25 AM   #16
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Well I finally finished all the sanding and staining last night.
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Now it is on to the details. This should extend the life of this play set and of course dress her up a bit more.

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I also got a Christmas present delivered yesterday from the WWW. 100' of polypropylene rope. Plan is to start setting this sucker back up on Saturday. I'm ready and so are my kids. My wife said last night, "No more big projects just before Christmas."

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Old 12-15-2016, 08:36 AM   #17
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Looks good. You've really done a great job.

I've never restored one like this, but I did assemble one very similar, and I spent nearly 100 man hours on that.





I need to get rid of it now, my daughter has outgrown it, if someone else is looking for a similar project.
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Old 12-15-2016, 10:34 AM   #18
Bill in San Jose
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Default Playset Rejuvenation

Unless you have a better plan to stop the rope ends from fraying, wrapping with electrical tape and then dipping/ swabbing the black glue for meant for black sanitary pipes sticks well and works. Keep it iff your hands, it stains.


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Old 12-15-2016, 10:59 AM   #19
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Plan is to wrap a bit of electrical tape around the location I intend to cut the rope. Then I'll be using this stuff...

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Looks like they used a similar product on the ropes that came with the play set. I ordered some yellow from the interwebs.
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Old 12-15-2016, 11:08 AM   #20
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A Bic lighter works well too.
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Old 12-15-2016, 11:10 AM   #21
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Gummi Bear, PM sent
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Old 12-15-2016, 11:49 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poisonivie View Post
A Bic lighter works well too.
Normally this is what I would do. However, that method can also leave a very rough, sometimes sharp edge. Not exactly what I want. Plus that method many times eventually breaks down and next thing you know my kids have untwisted 30' of rope. This size rope isn't something you can just run to the local hardware store and pick up a couple of feet.
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Old 12-15-2016, 11:59 AM   #23
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If you paid yourself minimum wage for while working on this project, how much money would you have in it with labor, new materials, paint etc?
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Old 12-15-2016, 02:23 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JTCowpoke View Post
If you paid yourself minimum wage for while working on this project, how much money would you have in it with labor, new materials, paint etc?
This sounds like a really bad idea...

Most of my work on this has been in the evenings after work between honey-dos and kid duty. Most weekends we are busy running around this time of year. Plus you add in Thanksgiving and a couple of hunts and I'd say I have somewhere around 60 hours into it right now.

Play set - $500
Labor - 60 hrs x 7.25 = $435
Sandpaper & Belts - ~$20
Wood stabilizer - $18.90
100' of 1" Rope - $73.77
Plasti Dip - $9.25
Spray Paint - $12.00
Stain and Associated Supplies - $69.43
Replacement Part from Manufacture - $50

Total of $1,170.35. Not as bad as I though it might be.
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Old 12-15-2016, 02:33 PM   #25
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As as alternative to power washing, a sprayer with bleach works wonders! Great for fences as well!
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Old 12-15-2016, 03:08 PM   #26
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You still saved a bundle. And it is looking better than it did when it was new.

Great job!
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Old 12-15-2016, 06:08 PM   #27
Bill in San Jose
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Default Playset Rejuvenation

The intangible benefit of watching your kids play on it for years knowing you rebuilt it can not be priced.

Add your children watching Dad do it for them, and it's priceless.

I still remember 28 years ago finishing installing a metal swing and slide set and watching 3 year old Ryan's smile as I pushed him. I cried because I knew I could only hold the moment for a couple minutes, and prayed to God that I always remember it. And I did. And I'm tearing up.


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Old 12-15-2016, 07:44 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JTCowpoke View Post
If you paid yourself minimum wage for while working on this project, how much money would you have in it with labor, new materials, paint etc?
Ban this man from the DIY section!


Nice work, Chad!
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Old 12-15-2016, 07:52 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill in San Jose View Post
The intangible benefit of watching your kids play on it for years knowing you rebuilt it can not be priced.

Add your children watching Dad do it for them, and it's priceless.

I still remember 28 years ago finishing installing a metal swing and slide set and watching 3 year old Ryan's smile as I pushed him. I cried because I knew I could only hold the moment for a couple minutes, and prayed to God that I always remember it. And I did. And I'm tearing up.


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👍 You the man!
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Old 12-19-2016, 08:33 AM   #30
Chad_E
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill in San Jose View Post
The intangible benefit of watching your kids play on it for years knowing you rebuilt it can not be priced.

Add your children watching Dad do it for them, and it's priceless.

I still remember 28 years ago finishing installing a metal swing and slide set and watching 3 year old Ryan's smile as I pushed him. I cried because I knew I could only hold the moment for a couple minutes, and prayed to God that I always remember it. And I did. And I'm tearing up.


μολν λαβ
I was able to get the structure up on Saturday. Keeping my two daughters off and out of the way while I did it was like keeping bees away from a honeycomb!

Only major item left now is the rope ladder. Hope to polish that off this week. Then I'll take and post comparison pictures.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dale Moser View Post
Ban this man from the DIY section!


Nice work, Chad!
Thanks and I agree. Luckily, he didn't say to factor in my actual salary based hourly rate.
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Old 12-19-2016, 08:46 AM   #31
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Looks fantastic! My brother and I put together a $600 one for my kids... It took me dern near 3hrs to just get the pieces out of the boxes and put into "alpha-merical" order PRIOR to me even bolting anything together!!!
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Old 12-19-2016, 10:24 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lglidewell View Post
Looks fantastic! My brother and I put together a $600 one for my kids... It took me dern near 3hrs to just get the pieces out of the boxes and put into "alpha-merical" order PRIOR to me even bolting anything together!!!
Yes, but you finished that "2 to 4 years" puzzle in only 67 days!
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Old 12-27-2016, 08:24 AM   #33
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Only a few touch up items remain. Having to clean the old tire swing so I don't ruin a bunch of cloths, but other than that she's all done. Girls are having fun on it! Hell, I've even spent a few minutes on the swings.

Before
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Old 12-27-2016, 09:29 AM   #34
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Looks like new! Good job.
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Old 12-27-2016, 09:33 AM   #35
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Dang! Bang up job.
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Old 12-31-2016, 01:03 AM   #36
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Turned out great.
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Old 12-31-2016, 03:04 AM   #37
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Looks great! My kids & nephews have outgrown the one my folks have at their house for grandkids. They just asked last week if I'd like to haul it to my house for my grandkids as they're starting to get old enough for a playset. I'll be getting into one of these projects in the near future myself. Though, I'm not sure I'm as dedicated as you are.
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Old 12-31-2016, 06:02 AM   #38
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Nice job!
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Old 01-01-2017, 09:36 AM   #39
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Way to go Chad. My mom bought a big one for Callie and it took 2 people a full day to put it together.

I would rather build a playset from scratch that put another one together.
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Old 01-01-2017, 09:50 AM   #40
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Great job, dad!




(Also makes me glad I live a few houses down from the school's playground)
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Old 01-01-2017, 09:50 AM   #41
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Awesome job! Looks great
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Old 01-03-2017, 03:07 PM   #42
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Thanks for the comments guys. I'm glad this one is over. Starting on a new DIY now. I'm adding on to my parents pole barn so I have somewhere to park my travel trailer. Post were set yesterday. Always something....
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Old 01-03-2017, 08:50 PM   #43
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Now you have the experience to do your fence to match lol.

Good job. Gave me some ideas when the wife starts wanting one for ours.
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Old 01-04-2017, 08:14 AM   #44
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^^ hehe. The fence is in the works. Waiting on the neighboring subdivision to make a decision and pony up their part of the cost.
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Old 01-04-2017, 08:51 AM   #45
Stolle
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Great job Chad! I have a feeling I will be doing the same thing hopefully later than sooner
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Old 01-04-2017, 09:24 AM   #46
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Turned out looking great. I need to get something bought/built for my boys like this. May go this route if I can find a deal on craigslist or something.
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Old 01-04-2017, 03:54 PM   #47
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Wow, thanks for the pictures. I have a swing set I bought when our oldest was 1yrs old. Have had it about 6yrs and she and her two younger siblings still play on it. Weathered to say the least. I was going to start replacing wood in parts where I see the most need. Wish I would have coated it when I purchased it.
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