Over the past few years I have helped renovate an old furniture store in our small town and turn it into an apartment complex. A lot of water lines needed to be ran through this building that holds 12 apartments. As a result, there was a lot of left over off-cuts and extra partial rolls after the plumbing was completed. Rather than toss the extra out, I asked if I could have it. I decided to use what I had obtained to make part of an obstacle course for our church's upcoming Vacation Bible School this summer.
What you'll need
- 3/4" PEX line (not much of this, maybe 10 feet)
- 1/2" PEX line (you'll need quite a bit of this, thankfully a roll of 100 ft. is about $25-$30)
- Tools (PVC cutter and a hammer)
- Optional - pool noodles (the PEX line isn't inherently dangerous, but the pool noodles sure do look nice)
Make sure you check out the video, it shows a bit more of each step than the images do. Please enjoy and if you make it or something like it, we'd love to see it. Share it with us on here or on Facebook, Google+, etc.
Step 1: Making the Stakes
For all of the parts of the course using the PEX line, I used stakes. These stakes are made from the 3/4" line. I cut off pieces ranging from 6-8 inches. The length really doesn't matter; just enough to get it into the ground and leave a couple inches sticking up. You can cut these with PVC cutters or even on a band saw or miter saw.
The nice thing about using these as stakes is that the 1/2" PEX fits perfectly into the 3/4", which makes a really tight bracing.
Step 2: Using Pool Noodles
For the first portion of the course I decided to make some upright zig-zag obstacles. These will be treated much like cones. The kids will have to weave in and out of them. This is just a series of 4 stakes, hammered into the ground. Each piece of 1/2" line is then cut to the length of the pool noodle; plus a few inches. This is as easy as sliding the noodle over the 1/2" piece and then sliding the 1/2" into the 3/4" stake.
Note: You will most likely need to bend the PEX to get the desired shape you want. I had to straighten it out quite a bit to get them to stand up straight.
Step 3: Main Course
The main part of the PEX portion of the course is the over / under looping of various arches. Some are set low to the ground, which will force them to go over the top and some are set higher, forcing them to crawl underneath. Some also meet at weird angles which will cause them to weave in and out while making their way through.
The arches and their layout can be anything you want. Each arch only requires two 3/4" stakes and whatever length of 1/2" line you choose. You can bend the 1/2" into some pretty cool shapes without it kinking and it still holds really well in the stakes.
Step 4: All Done!
You could get really creative with the layout of these. Since this is just a portion of the obstacle course, we decided to keep it somewhat simple. If you want to see how the entire PEX portion of the course was laid out, make sure you check out the video, which is basically a time lapse of putting it together.
We hope you enjoyed this DIY project and the video that goes along with it. If you have any questions or comments please let us know, we'd be more than happy to help you out. Thanks for checking out this Instructable.