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Swiss Family Tiki Treehouse
nctrader
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 02, 2011
Posts: 21
From: San Francisco / Charlotte, NC
Posted: 2015-03-31 08:42 am   Permalink

Aloha!

I've lurked here for quite some time, enjoying the incredible creations from the artists and Polynesian lifestylers who frequent this amazing place.

I'm a big time fan of mid-century and tropical culture and just started a new project with my kids. With more than a nod to the Swiss Family Treehouse in Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom, we've recently broken ground on our own downscaled version in our backyard. I'll post up some pictures here along the way.

Although I've traveled overland throughout the tropics in Central America, I still come back to Adventureland for ideas and inspiration. I'd love input from the esteemed membership!


Hidden in the treetops, safe from marauding pirates (or Europeans).




Interior interest. Two hammocks will be included in our version.

Mahalo!
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MaukaHale
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 07, 2012
Posts: 750
From: The base of the Volcano
Posted: 2015-03-31 11:04 am   Permalink

I wish I had one of those!


 
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nctrader
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 02, 2011
Posts: 21
From: San Francisco / Charlotte, NC
Posted: 2015-03-31 11:07 am   Permalink

For the project, we chose to situate about 65sf of platform 10' off the ground on an old magnolia at the back of our property. What you'll see in pictures from the platform is that the far side of this treehouse is cantilevered over a slope along the back edge of our property, which gives you stunning treetop-views from an effective final elevation of 40' over the densely-wooded space below.


Stairs are in. Railings... that's another thing, altogether.
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hang10tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 18, 2010
Posts: 7297
From: Las Vegas
Posted: 2015-03-31 2:34 pm   Permalink

Wow
Killer.......


 
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EnchantedTikiGoth
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 31, 2003
Posts: 238
From: Calgary, Canada
Posted: 2015-03-31 4:06 pm   Permalink

That is an awesome idea! I can't wait to see how this evolves! The Swiss Family Treehouse is great inspiration!

(I actually laughed a little when we saw the version at WDW... We have some of the same furniture in our own home!)


 
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EPCOTExplorer
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 13, 2014
Posts: 298
From: Miami, FL
Posted: 2015-03-31 5:05 pm   Permalink

Eager to see how this turns out!

 
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bamalamalu
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 20, 2006
Posts: 902
Posted: 2015-04-02 8:13 pm   Permalink

I love this - can't wait to see more.

 
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VampiressRN
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: Nov 23, 2006
Posts: 6153
From: Sun City Lincoln Hills (NorCal)
Posted: 2015-04-02 9:05 pm   Permalink

WOW!!! That is inspiring. Looks like the stairway to heaven. Looking forward to your continued build!!!
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nctrader
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 02, 2011
Posts: 21
From: San Francisco / Charlotte, NC
Posted: 2015-04-03 11:57 am   Permalink

Thanks everyone, for the kind notes and encouragement! I'm going to start digging deeper in the boards for some resources that aren't in Florida for some items I'm having trouble sourcing in North Carolina.

EUCALYPTUS STAIR SPINDLES

If anyone has a bead on eucalyptus poles in the Greater Charlotte region, I'd be in your debt! These will be mixed in with some bamboo sticks for the stair spindles. I've got 19 steps with two spindles a piece and three 3 x 3' landings to cover. So, I need roughly 85 3' (x 3/4" - 1.5" dia) sticks. Amazulu in Florida has been very nice and the cost per cut spindle is about $3.65 + freight. Still, the freight from Florida is significant.

BAMBOO

I'm going to comingle the same diameter bamboo poles among the eucalyptus - with the bamboo 1:10 or so against the number of eucalyptus poles. Luckily, I have a grove of bamboo (don't know the variety, but will post pics) at my disposal. The stuff is live and must be cured prior to I build with it. Smaller stuff I'm sourcing locally.

THATCH

We simply don't have the money for 130 square feet of synthetic, so I'm thinking of using the standard Mexican Cape, which I've had quoted on a roll and in 42" square mats. Ideas here? I have access to fire retardant, or may just pay the nominal upcharge to get the "outdoor retardant" version.

WOVEN BAMBOO PLYWOOD

This will make up the lower section of my walls, which will be made up of these laminated onto ACX ply, captured on the sides with mitered bamboo framing. Anyone seen these in North Carolina?



 
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nctrader
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 02, 2011
Posts: 21
From: San Francisco / Charlotte, NC
Posted: 2015-04-06 06:11 am   Permalink

I hope everyone enjoyed a relaxing, fulfilling Easter / Passover weekend! We were busy on the treehouse, working on taking the platform vertical, with the pony wall studs all in place now. These tip out an inch-per-foot, so the treehouse will have a width of almost 10' at the top, and 8' at the deck. Boy, carriage bolts are expensive!!!


Detail shot of the birdsmouth notch cut, sitting over the rim joist.


Corner blocks allow 5" bamboo corner posts to seat securely under the deck. The studs all lean out from the deck, but are otherwise perpendicular, so it will be easy to frame the wall materials.

Less sexy (but long overdue), work happened under the magnolia as we cleaned up a few years of yard refuse that had accumulated there. Infested with ivy, it was stupid, backbreaking work, but the area is now clean. We're going bury a little precast edging, mulch the bed and plant shade tolerant stuff like ginger and cana and, of course a few tiki props.


 
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finky099
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 15, 2012
Posts: 505
From: Orange County, CA
Posted: 2015-04-09 11:59 am   Permalink

Wow, what a project. Very much look forward to seeing the results. My reaction to this post was kinda like
Flounder's.
Cheers!


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nctrader
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 02, 2011
Posts: 21
From: San Francisco / Charlotte, NC
Posted: 2015-04-10 09:00 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2015-04-09 11:59, finky099 wrote:
Wow, what a project. Very much look forward to seeing the results. My reaction to this post was kinda like
Flounder's.
Cheers!




Ha! My 13-year-old twins and I were out in a bamboo grove last night, gathering the king studs for the four corners and rafters. I only realized this morning that I missed a prime photo op of my son, who was hacking at the "jungle" with a machete about as long as he is tall.

Does anyone have an opinion about whether I should attempt to build with this fresh stuff versus buying already cured? The treehouse is in constant shade and I wonder if I'll be able to cut / notch the green poles with less splitting than when if I used pre-cured material.

The window bamboo is already purchased and is already cured, of course.


 
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nctrader
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 02, 2011
Posts: 21
From: San Francisco / Charlotte, NC
Posted: 2015-05-04 10:16 am   Permalink

After some business travel and much rain in North Carolina, we're back at it! We won't be in Florida until June, so we decided to source wood locally from NC, instead of using the eucalyptus that can seemingly only be purchased south of Georgia! We discovered that crepe myrtle grows relatively long, straight branches. These are incredibly dense hardwood, resistant to pests and will have a great color once we clear-coat them.

With many stairs needing spindles, we estimate about 130 30" sections will be required. Will post up pictures later tonight!


 
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nctrader
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 02, 2011
Posts: 21
From: San Francisco / Charlotte, NC
Posted: 2015-05-22 06:18 am   Permalink

Stairs are nearing completion now, with crepe myrtle branches substituted for eucalyptus.



Between baluster posts, we're mixing it up in the spirit of the real Swiss Family Treehouse attraction. Bamboo, netting and other materials will break up the lovely, but somewhat monotonous crepe myrtle spindles.



 
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KreepyTiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 18, 2007
Posts: 215
Posted: 2015-06-01 12:56 am   Permalink

Looking WONDERFUL! I love what you've done so far and can't wait to see the finished results. But I'm mighty impressed already!

 
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