DIY Pallet Swing Seat

April 14, 2020

Learn how to make a DIY pallet swing seat, step by step instructions show you how to make your own for your garden.

The children have outgrown the play equipment we inherited when we moved into our home. For a while, my husband has been itching to remodel this part of the garden, so amidst the winter months, often in the dark by torchlight he has dismantled the play equipment and raised vegetable beds and repurposed the wood. The children’s request for the redesign was a fire pit and some form of swing seat.

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Firstly he made an amazing bench seat, mainly with wood from raised beds. The bench seats are positioned around a fire pit/coffee table – the coffee table has been built to sit over the fire pit and be easily lifted off for the evenings. Read more about the garden transformation:

Secondly, he then constructed a new frame and made a swing seat from an old pallet.

 

This is our garden now – the time and effort has been worth it. Over Easter we have spent hours in the garden, with many evenings sat around the fire pit.




 

DIY Pallet Swing Seat

This swing frame is made with wooden poles to form the frame to hang the seat from. To make the frame cut poles to 7’10”, or taller if your wood allows, four poles for the legs and one for the crosspiece at the top . These poles are 4” diameter. Our top piece measures 93”.   Longer legs would allow you to set them deeper in the ground, or to have a higher swing frame.

 

Drill fully through the poles 15” from one end.

Place a threaded rod through two of the poles and secure loosely with two washers and nuts.

 

Find a centre line to work with and make sure the intersection of the poles is on the line. Then place the legs an equal distance from the centre line.

 

Place a 4’ piece of scrap wood across up 14” from the base and secure with screws.  This is purely to hold the frame together, and act as a guide when digging the holes for the legs. Do this for both sides.

 

Dig holes and place your legs in position.  Place your crosspiece on top and check with a spirit level.

Pour in cement post-mix, following the instructions.

 

Top the hole up with soil.

Next place the fifth pole across the top and secure with threaded rods and bolts each side. The bolts go through the top pole and one side pole, repeat with top pole and second side pole. You may need to drill through the poles one at a time.

 

Now it’s time to make the swing from an old pallet. Using a jigsaw cut the pallet by using the central support plank as a guide.  This leaves you with one section for the seat which is a fully supported piece of pallet just over half the size of the pallet, and another section of pallet for the backrest.

 

The backrest piece of the pallet will be lacking support so you need to add a replacement for the cross support you used as a guide for the cut. 

 

Add blocks of wood between the front and back panels of the pallet for the backrest so that this is sturdy.

Now its time to join the two pieces together at whatever angle you would prefer between seat and backrest.  We did this in 2 ways.  Firstly we used bolts and screws to attach the backrest to the seat, screwing the newly added blocks of wood attached to the backrest, to the seat.  Secondly, we attached side supports from the front of the seat, to the top of the backrest.

 

Lastly it’s time to hang the pallet seat onto the swing seat structure. We have used the old ropes from a former swing seat combined with straps we bought online, meant for hanging swings from a tree.

Two pieces of wood 46″long (1 3/4″x3/4″) were placed through the pallet seat, one through the seat itself and one through the backrest.  You do not need to screw these pieces of wood onto the pallet itself until you have assembled the swing and tested it swings correctly.  This means you can adjust the position of these supports and/or your rope as required.  We then bolted on a gym hook to the end of each support, to hook the ropes on.

The ropes from the old swing were attached to the corded tree swing fittings using carabiners.  You need to make sure you purchase tree swing fixings, carabiners and gym hooks that can take the weight you intend to put onto the swing!

 

 
 
The flower bed in front of the DIY pallet seat has been sown with wildflowers to encourage insects, birds, bees, and butterflies.
 
 
Since building the swing seat it has been painted with external wood paint and we have treated ourselves to pallet cushion.
 
 
 
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A passion for sewing, upcycling and caring for the environment - the perfect excuse to haunt charity shops for bargains!

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