Monday, 8 August 2011

The Bastard Swing Set From Hell

A while ago, I saw an awesome swing set on sale. I decided that it would be a good idea to get it, given that the only outdoor play equipment I have for Seagull is his Zoom Bike (a plastic tricycle) and a big Tonka truck that his Godmother gave him for his second birthday. I put down a deposit on it, made another payment a fortnight later, then promptly forgot about it.

I finally got around to paying off the remainder last week and set about putting it up. I'm normally pretty good at putting things together and figured that it would take me an hour at most to put together. Yeah, I'll bet you know where this is going. I slightly overestimated my own abilities somewhat.

For a start, it required three ring spanners in the only three sizes that I couldn't find amonst my assortedrandom collection of tools. I found a shifter and a pair of pliers and got to work.

The shifter is a cheap piece of shit and I was constantly having to adjust the damn thing. It took me about an hour just to get the two halves of the top bar of the frame together with the leg supports on either end. As I tried to get the legs in place, the screws that were meant to hold it to the leg supports kept stripping. I ended up going to the local hardware store to buy a pack of screws. I also bought me 2 x 11mm ring spanners while I was there.

I got home, went to use the screws and realised that I'd bought the wrong size, so I had to go back to the hardware store to exchange them for the right size. With the right size screws finally procured, I was finally able to finish putting the frame together.

The first two swings went together easily enough. I also put the trapesze together, but stashed it in my tool box and put up a baby swing for Wombat in its place. With dusk not far off, I only had the lawn swing left to put together. Easy, I thought. I was wrong. The instructions had been fairly average up to this point, but left a lot to the imagination for this last swing. All I wanted was to get the bastard set finished off before dark so the kids would have something to play on when I went back to work. The swing just didn't want to go together straight.

Finally, it was nearly dark and the swing finally decided to cooperate. At last, the bastard swing set from hell was complete. You want to know what the really funny thing about all of this is? Seagull gets afraid of the swings when they are moving. He is happy to sit on the lawn swing, but he screams his head off the instant one of us tries to swing it for him.

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