Tightrope update

Posted by jerry on September 11th, 2005 — Posted in Journal, Woodwork

After a year or so the portable tightrope is still going strong – and is still strong enough for my weight. But my daughter had managed to find a source of 10mm wire rope at Revolve – the local tip shop – so it was time to revisit the tightrope.

A close inspection revealed that extensive use had taken some toll on the tightrope structure – the turnbuckle screws were beginning to bend (due to a temporary quick and dirty attachment of 12mm wire rope) and one of the pop rivets had lost its head on one of the support legs. Also the bolt leading to one of the turnbuckles had a stretched thread due to over-tightening at some point.

So it was off to Bunnings for new turnbuckles, wire rope thimbles and 10mm wire rope clamps. And why not pick up a couple of brackets too for good measure.

I drilled and replaced the damaged rivet, then replaced the turnbuckles and fitted the new 10mm wire rope. My daughter had noted that professional portable rigs had small circular platforms at either end – more stable than garden chairs, so this seemed like a good opportunity to upgrade the rig accordingly.

I had some 300mm pine boards lying around, so I scribed a circle and cut the discs out on the bandsaw (just a cheapo hobby GMC one, but it’s enough for small job like this one). Then a quick sanding to remove the high spots and a quick spray with some undercoat and then a couple of layers of enamel to make it weatherproof. And here is the result – a definite improvement on the original design!

Portable tightrope
Portable Tightrope

And yes the whole structure fits in the van at just a shade over two metres in length 🙂


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