How To Build a Tractor Tire Playground
I am a girl/woman/lady that wears many hats – a mom, a wife, a jewelry designer, a quilter/sewer/creator, Project QUILTING organizer, retired engineer, and a part owner/operator of an apple orchard. For this ‘How To’ I’m going to be wearing the hat of the part owner/operator of an apple orchard.
This season we have a challenge ahead of us – we are moving the store from our in-laws farm to my husband and I’s farm. We are only about 10 minutes from the old location but it’s still going to be different for our regular customers. One of our main goals with the move is to make the customers feel like they didn’t loose anything in the move – we’re hoping that they’ll be excited about all the new things they’re gaining!
One of the new things we’ve added to our ‘new’ location is a tractor tire playground. I’m going to walk you through a quick ‘how-to’ on putting one of these in your property today along with some of the pictures from our process.
First you have to find a source for tractor tires. The great thing about this playground is that you should be able to find a tire repair shop that will just give you the tires. Normally they have to PAY to get rid of the tires so you’ll actually be doing them a favor and saving them money by taking them off your hands. My husband made three runs with the trailer to collect just over 20 tires for our playground.
Next you need to decide how you want to get the tires in the ground. Some may find it easier to hire or borrow an excavator with a skinny bucket to dig in each tire but I needed to get some “summer arms”. Digging in the tractor tires was the perfect solution! I also did wear sandals to do the job but I wouldn’t recommend this – a person should really wear some boots.
Remember to take your time. I had twenty tires to get in the ground which seemed a bit overwhelming at first. I then created small goals of at least one a night or else five done before we leave for vacation. These goals made the task not seem as daunting AND spread out the fun!
Fire tires are in…
One trick I learned while digging the tires was to do one go through and get all the chunks of sod out of the ground first and put that in one pile. Then I put the dirt below that in a second pile. This was helpful for filling the hole back in once the tire was placed in it. I would put the sod chunks in first and then fill it up with the loose dirt.
I’m standing in one of the tractor tire holes.
Jared (my husband) helped me role the tires into place – man are they heavy!
I managed to dig all the tires in in just under a month! Someone was wood chipping trees in the right away and they dropped the excess mulch off at our orchard – worked perfectly to fill in around the tires.
My in-laws found this slide at the dump and Jared bolted it into one of the tires. Luckily, that tire still has some decent tread so the kids will be able to climb up it just like a ladder!
Other miscellaneous tips if you decide to dig your own tire playground.
- drink lots of water
- wear boots – not sandals!
- digging after rain is much easier than when the ground is dry (especially if you are digging in clay)
- take off your rings
If you want to see more pictures of the work in progress check out: http://www.flickr.com/photos/33166641@N07/sets/72157624051223453/