Picture of 5-Gallon Bucket Swing
Build a simple toddler swing from a 5-Gallon Bucket!

You and your tot will have tons of fun in the backyard with this affordable and easy-to-build DIY project!

To get started, you'll need tools and materials!


5-Gallon Bucket

Step 1: Get a Bucket

Picture of Get a Bucket
To start with, get some rope and a bucket.

I already had a 5-gallon bucket handy. It was a "Pickle Bucket" I got from a restaurant. Restaurants are great sources of #2 Food-Grade plastic 5-gallon buckets. They are very sturdy. You could also purchase a 5-gallon bucket from a home-improvement store.

If you will build this project with a used/recycled bucket, just make sure that it is in good condition (some plastics degrade in the sunlight outdoors and become brittle.) Wash out the bucket before building the swing.

You will also need some rope. Ideally, you would like something designed to hold up to the weather - wind, sun, and rain.

You will need a length of rope at least DOUBLE as long from your favorite tree-branch to the ground.

Once you have the bucket, remove the handle. If you look where the handle goes into the bucket, you can see how the wire makes a turn, it's then pretty easy to figure out which direction to twist to make the handle come right out. You don't HAVE to remove the handle, as the part of the bucket it is connected to will be cut off, but the bucket is easier to work WITHOUT the handle getting in the way.
PsicoDan1 year ago
From Chile sends my daughter thank you, a brilliant idea that we pleased. Greetings.
ssagaji2 years ago
What do you recommend to use instead of the jigsaw? (if you don't have one)
bennelson (author)  ssagaji2 years ago
Any saw capable of cutting plastic will work fine. You just want something that can cut curves well, so a circle saw wouldn't be very good.

A drywall handsaw would work fine, a reciprocating saw is great (Sawzall, etc.)

You could also just drill a series of holes and then finish it (carefully) with a razor knife.

It's not rocket science, but yes, some saws will work better than others.
SIRJAMES093 years ago
will do Sir! have already printed out the plans & the bucket is drying out now(was extremely dirty-had to be cleaned 1st).
SIRJAMES093 years ago
I have 2 grandsons & another one(boy or girl we do not yet know) on the way...
I love this!!! I think it's an awesome project & very well articulated, as well as photographed. TY for sharing Sir!! :)


because it sometimes will rain in the early morning, yet be perfect for the rest of the day, a bucket by nature has a tendency to hold water...even in this case(all be it a very small amount).

So I was thinking, why not drill some small holes in the bottom of the bucket to let the rainwater drain out? to keep from causing irritation, bevel out the holes just enough to make them smooth.

Or would this weaken the bottom too much??
as I said, this is just a thought.

TY again for sharing Sir. Awesome swing!!
bennelson (author)  SIRJAMES093 years ago
I haven't noticed it being wet inside after rain. The swing hangs pretty level, so any water should just run out through the leg holes.

If you are in an especially wet part of the world, a few small drain holes in the bottom of the bucket near the back should take care of it.
Oh, ok....like I said, it was just a thought...

TY again for sharing that...I have several 5 gallon buckets laying about the place doing nothing more than collecting dust.

The weekend is coming up so that will give me an excuse(like I REALLY need one) to make 1 or 2 of these swings.
bennelson (author)  SIRJAMES093 years ago
If you make any, please take a photo and post it. I'd love to see what other people do with it!
poofrabbit3 years ago
Hey congratulations on winning Scoochmaroo Challenge: Reuse!!!
Jayefuu3 years ago
Very clever Ben! Like it.