How to Build a See Saw

No playground area is complete without a seesaw. The playtime structure is relatively easy to assemble and will withstand any abuse children give it. Materials are affordable and easily attainable at local hardware stores.


  • 2×4 and 2×8 pressure-treated boards
  • Galvanized, 1 and ¼” steel pipes
  • 2×10” 10 ft long pressure-treated board
  • Rope
  • Galvanized window wells
  • Paint or stain
  • Mulch
  • Spikes
  • Screws


  • Drill
  • Saw
  • Sandpaper
  • Tape measure


  1. Choose a flat area away from trees and other obstacles as the site for the see-saw. Mulch the general area that will surround the see-saw, so the area isn’t too hard.
  2. Create the fulcrum where the seats will be connected, making it approximately 14” high. Use spikes to hold two wells stacked on top of each other in place.
  3. Measure 16” for both ends of the 2×10 board, then measure 1 ¼” at the sides and drill it. String a rope through the holes and fasten them securely to form handles.
  4. Connect the seats to the window wells, fastening them to the fulcrum with screws. Ensure that they’re centered as the see-saw is assembled. Make curving cuts with the saw on both ends of the seats and sand the seats until smooth.
  5. If using a steel pipe fulcrum, cut two 2×8 boards approximately 35” long. Make two notches and set them 20” above the surface, fasting them into place with cement. Use pipe straps to secure the galvanized pipe in place then attach the seats as described above.
  6. Use a 2×4 brace and fasten it beneath the seats. Create a notch in the middle of each brace at 1 and ¼ “ deep by 1 and 1¼ “ wide. Follow the steps described previously to complete the project.
  7. Once the see-saw is completely assembled, paint with weather-resistant, non-toxic paint or stain with wood stain. Allow the paint or stain to cure for approximately 24 hours, or till completely dry.

Tips and warnings

  • Wear protective gear like gloves when building a see-saw. If you have little experience using advanced carpentry tools, ensure to follow all instructions closely. Sweep away or vacuum splinters and dirt when the project is completed.
  • If using a stain, use one that is weather resistant so it will not be affected. Use a mask when painting or staining if you experience respiratory problems, have a weak respiratory system, or experience allergies.
  • Work in an area that is free from foot traffic and distractions; do not let anyone with respiratory problems or allergies near the site while you are painting or staining the structure.
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