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Old 09-22-2018, 12:23 PM   #1
TeamAmerica
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Default Treehouse builders?

Planning to build a treehouse for kids (and me). Tree is a mature post oak and I want to be careful not to damage it. Looking for any advice. Safety is a priority as well.

Considering using a ladder stand repurposed for the build. I may use hog panel for the sides/railing. Maybe a firemans pole? I plan to have only a small portion covered.

Who has built one and what did you learn?
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Old 09-22-2018, 02:08 PM   #2
waverider
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First, I am not a carpenter in any way, shape, form or fashion...I am far more fluent working with metal and this was my first attempt at building a treehouse. The project was conceived in an effort to build my son a treehouse at our lease and it ended up being more of the ultimate tree stand.

The photos below show some of the construction. I used 2X6's for the main horizontal beams and floor joists. The main horizontal beams are attached to the tree with large lag bolts and the lag bolt holes through the beams are oversized so the tree could flex/move without stressing the structure of the treehouse. Final decked out size was 8'X8' The whole thing is built with pressure treated lumber and is still hell for stout after three years.

The one downside to this build is that it ended up being 25' off the ground. I kind of got tunnel vision when I was building it and focused solely on using the best part of the tree without consideration to how high off the ground I was building. When my son finally came out to the lease with me to see it, I realized that the overall height was a safety concern going up and down the ladder. We implemented a couple safety practices to help mitigate the fall risk.





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Old 09-22-2018, 03:44 PM   #3
Acameron52
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I’m no help, but that thing is bad arse waverider!!
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Old 09-22-2018, 03:45 PM   #4
slicktree
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That is pretty cool. I'd love to drink a few beers and shoot hogs out of that thing
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Old 09-22-2018, 07:07 PM   #5
Notaguide
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Built this one a few years back for my son that he and friends have enjoyed. I believe the overall dimensions are 8x8. Used some old barn tin for the roof, cedar pickets for walls, galvanized pipe with bases attached to tree for a rope to climb down and bucket pulley on the other side. Really straight forward construction using Simpson framing bolts into the tree though there a bunch of "TAB's" (tree house attachment bottles) out there available. The height wasn't too high to add a zip line to another tree 60' away which the kids really like.
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Old 09-22-2018, 07:18 PM   #6
kruppa24
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That’s one heck of a look out. I wouldn’t one to drink to many beers that high up
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Old 10-11-2018, 02:34 PM   #7
TeamAmerica
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Well, i've scouted the area and have identified the spot i want. it will be a triangle with 3 trees. i know that may come back to haunt me if they grow at different paces, but i'll use 2x8s so i have some leveling ability with the bolts/joists that go into the trees. i also want to do a stair case that has a landing at the mid point so if someone decides they want to tumble down, at least it will slow them down!

I'll be incorporating some type of pulley system/bucket so they can bring stuff into the house without carrying it up the stairs. I love the zip line too but not sure i can convince my wife that's a good idea!
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Old 10-11-2018, 02:51 PM   #8
Rescue1
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wife has been bugging me to make one. I think I have a spot picked out. like OP it's 3 trees so I'm sure it will have issues as they grow. but they are oaks so it will be slow. thinking just tall enough to get that up in the air feeling. and for me to walk under without hitting my head.

interested on how ya'll attached to the tree. I've seen those anchors specifically for tree houses but they are $$$

just want to make sure nobody dies.
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Old 10-11-2018, 02:54 PM   #9
Stickslinger92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waverider View Post
First, I am not a carpenter in any way, shape, form or fashion...I am far more fluent working with metal and this was my first attempt at building a treehouse. The project was conceived in an effort to build my son a treehouse at our lease and it ended up being more of the ultimate tree stand.

The photos below show some of the construction. I used 2X6's for the main horizontal beams and floor joists. The main horizontal beams are attached to the tree with large lag bolts and the lag bolt holes through the beams are oversized so the tree could flex/move without stressing the structure of the treehouse. Final decked out size was 8'X8' The whole thing is built with pressure treated lumber and is still hell for stout after three years.

The one downside to this build is that it ended up being 25' off the ground. I kind of got tunnel vision when I was building it and focused solely on using the best part of the tree without consideration to how high off the ground I was building. When my son finally came out to the lease with me to see it, I realized that the overall height was a safety concern going up and down the ladder. We implemented a couple safety practices to help mitigate the fall risk.






This is AWESOME! I'd camp out up there!
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Old 10-11-2018, 03:01 PM   #10
Antlers86
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Tagging for future project ideas!
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Old 10-11-2018, 03:21 PM   #11
Leon County Slayer
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My son and I watch that tree house builders show and it's amazing. He's really wanting to start on one too. Tagged!
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Old 10-12-2018, 11:39 AM   #12
TeamAmerica
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rescue1 View Post
wife has been bugging me to make one. I think I have a spot picked out. like OP it's 3 trees so I'm sure it will have issues as they grow. but they are oaks so it will be slow. thinking just tall enough to get that up in the air feeling. and for me to walk under without hitting my head.

interested on how ya'll attached to the tree. I've seen those anchors specifically for tree houses but they are $$$

just want to make sure nobody dies.
My plan is a long lag screw in a 2x8 joist. The hole will be oversized in joist with an oversized washer. Say 1/2" lag, 1 1/2" hole in joist and 2 1/2" washer. Planning on not tightening the joist too snug to the tree. Mine are post oaks too so they shouldn't grow fast enough to worry about.
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Old 10-12-2018, 11:45 AM   #13
Jtrisler
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TeamAmerica View Post
Well, i've scouted the area and have identified the spot i want. it will be a triangle with 3 trees. i know that may come back to haunt me if they grow at different paces, but i'll use 2x8s so i have some leveling ability with the bolts/joists that go into the trees. i also want to do a stair case that has a landing at the mid point so if someone decides they want to tumble down, at least it will slow them down!

I'll be incorporating some type of pulley system/bucket so they can bring stuff into the house without carrying it up the stairs. I love the zip line too but not sure i can convince my wife that's a good idea!
Also, be careful with the wind blowing those 3 different trees in all different directions and eventually pulling things apart. I built a platform in a single tree to bow hunt out of and use a tree that split into 3 trunks about 6 foot off the ground. Platform was at 20 feet up the tree. The following year it was torn apart due to the 3 different trunks moving in different directions.
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Old 10-12-2018, 11:56 AM   #14
MadHatter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TeamAmerica View Post
My plan is a long lag screw in a 2x8 joist. The hole will be oversized in joist with an oversized washer. Say 1/2" lag, 1 1/2" hole in joist and 2 1/2" washer. Planning on not tightening the joist too snug to the tree. Mine are post oaks too so they shouldn't grow fast enough to worry about.
I've built a couple in my day, and this is the right idea. OPs is just a rough, but if it's finished out, you can't have a tree busting it apart. I wouldn't let the lag, or whatever you use, rest directly on the wood though.
Sleeve it with gas pipe, or whatever you can find. Fill it with grease and then put your big washers on each side. Also put a spacer between the tree and your joist. 1/2" - 2". Wood to wood contact from the beginning is less than Ideal.
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Old 10-12-2018, 12:22 PM   #15
Matt_C
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This guy built one that actually allows the tree to continue to grow unabated but still have a exceptional tree house.

https://www.youtube.com/results?sear...star+treehouse
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