Introduction: Rope Swing

A rope swing is usually thought of as a single piece of rope that is hanging from a tree. This Instructable shows you how to create a conventional sitting swing out of rope. This is a relatively easy project that you should be able to complete in 2-4 hours.


1/2 inch rope (at least 18 ft.)

3 pieces of scrap wood at least 1.5 ft long and at least 3/4 inch thick (I used leftover wood flooring)

smaller pieces of wood that are the same thickness of the wood you are using

small nails that are roughly 1.5 inches long


tape measure

something with which to draw straight lines that is at least 1.5 ft. long (I used a chalk line)

something to cut the rope with (decent scissors or a razor blade knife work great)

lighter (to burn the rope ends)

Step 1: Making the Loom

This step is kind of long, but simple...

First you take two of your three long pieces of wood and place them perpendicular to the third piece about 5 inches apart (this is roughly how wide your swing will be minus 1-3 inches depending on how tight you weave the rope through and how far you place the nails from the edge). Nail the two pieces onto the third parallel to each other. Once you have done this, place the extra pieces of wood under the two parallel ones to keep them stable while you do some hammering. Depending on how wide your wood is, place your nails (see diagram) in a straight line on the wood a set distance from the edge using a straight line as a guide (I used a chalk line but you can use a yardstick with a marker). Place your nails along this line every 3/4 of an inch (this distance will vary with rope thickness). Place the nails for as long as you want (the length of the swing) and then add one extra nail at the end of one of the boards. Note: These instructions are for a child's swing. If you, as an adult want to use it, you must make the seat longer by adding more nails.

Step 2: Starting the Rope on the Loom

Now you can start weaving the rope. Start the rope as seen in the picture and just go back and forth running the rope around the nails. Make sure that you have about a foot or more of rope on the end that can be used to make the "handle" of the swing on that end.

Step 3: Weaving

Begin weaving by taking the rest of the rope and begin weaving by going under the first rope line you come to and then over the next. Repeat this pattern until you get to the end and then alternate by doing the opposite as you can see in the picture. Continue to do this until it becomes too difficult to do it on the loom.

Step 4: Finishing the Weaving

Once it has become too hard to weave, take the rope off of the loom and run it until you can't any more. It is important, though to make sure that when you are done with this part that the weaving end of the rope is on the opposite side of the swing that the other one end is on. This is because you need the weaving end on the other side to make the right handle. If you must forgo a weaving line to make this happen, it is ok. Your swing should still be pretty stiff to begin with, and a little bit of looseness is ok.

Step 5: Making the Handles

To make the handles, cut the leftover rope down to about one foot and then burn both ends of the rope to make a stronger end that will not push out or pull in. For the final step, tie both ends of the rope onto the loops on the other side of the swing. These loops can be attached to a chain or another rope for hanging. To tie it on, use either a single or double knot (I used a single, but a double should be more secure).

Step 6: Enjoy

Take this swing outside, attach it to another piece of rope or a chain and enjoy a relaxing swing. (I do not assume responsibility for any injury(s) caused by this swing although it is highly unlikely)

Rope & String Speed Challenge

Participated in the
Rope & String Speed Challenge