Picture of How To Build a Pirate Ship Playground
We decided to build a pirate ship for my grandson...this is how we did it.  

I started by drawing out some basic sketches of what I thought would be a cool look and worked out some basic engineering ideas.  Our idea was to capitalize on the standard sizes of decking/treated lumber available to minimize waste.  We also designed the playground so that all activities could be watched from the back porch of the house (swings, slide, entrance, etc.)
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Step 1: Layout

Picture of Layout
We designed the bottom deck to be 4'x8'.  We put together the outside frame first, squared it off, and positioned it where we wanted the playground to go.  I then had my son-in-law dig the holes for the 6 each 2x4x8 posts.

After placing the posts in the holes we leveled the frame and attached them together using lag screws.  Make sure you drill pilot holes to guide your lag screws and ensure the frame is attached level, square, and securely.  

We then poured quickcrete around the posts.

Step 2:

Picture of
Next we repeated the steps for the second level.  We determined the height of the second deck from the recommended height of the slide we purchased at Home Depot  (approximately 51").  At first we mirrored the top deck to the bottom deck but soon realized we needed to extend the back of the ship to give us symmetry due to the bow coming off the front.  We replaced the 8' sides with 10' sides and let the additional 2' extend towards the back.
scharters2 months ago
Love it! My grandson would be in his element in this. Hope i can pull it off
ralph.travers.1 made it!3 months ago

what do you think?

lemaster63 (author)  ralph.travers.13 months ago

Wow. You did my favorite thing...take an idea and make it better. Fantastic job!

what do you think?


what do you think?


what do you think?



We're hoping to start building a pirate ship playground soon, using yours as inspiration- thank you for posting the detailed instructions and very helpful photos!

How long would you say it took you to build, from go to whoah? We'll have two adults with limited engineering/construction experience (but lots of enthusiasm) doing this on weekends and weekdays when we can find an hour or two.

Thank you!

lemaster63 (author)  iLiveInaLibrary3 months ago
If I remember correctly we worked on it off and on for a week.
We started on a Saturday morning and I was over there most afternoons. We enjoyed it so much we lost track of the exact time. Now that it has weathered a couple of years it even looks better.
skipernicus10 months ago

This is the greatest playhouse!

wyldestyle11 months ago
thumbs up... especially like the off kilter clubhouse...
duresti1 year ago
I love this as our son is starting to watch Jake and the Neverland Pirates. Keep up the good work.
ekireva2 years ago
Nice job.
l8nite2 years ago
Thats an AWESOME play structure ! I need to share this with my sonNlaw. May I suggest you change your 1st picture for one of the finished structure though
lemaster63 (author)  l8nite2 years ago
Done! Thanks for the idea.
lafnbear2 years ago
Are you pretty much the best GrandDad ever?; yes, you Argharr!
tim_n lafnbear2 years ago
Made me laugh - reminds me of my favorite pirate joke

"why are pirates called pirates?" - "because the arrrrrr!"