Tree House Supports

poetmk

Active Member
I've been approached about designing a non-invasive support structure for a tree house and was wondering if anyone here has experimented with Cobra or Tree Save for this? Any thoughts welcome - I haven't seen the tree(s) yet - but this should be a fun and challenging job :)

thanks -

mk
 

easyphloem

Well-Known Member
I have been thinking about designing a floating platform using Cobra cable or something similar.

I think it depends on the size of the platform or structure, just how it would work.



I am interested to see what your project might entail.


SZ
 

Waldo

Well-Known Member
so something like a floating platform set up like a hammock, just with more than two tie in's. the only issue i see with it is every couple years it would have to be re-adjusted.

just thinking off the top of my head here... what were you thinking about with it?
 

Eric_E

New Member
I could be completely wrong but I don't believe cobra is good for being under constant tension. I have done suspended anchor points using cable and slings.
 

easyphloem

Well-Known Member
I think you're right, Eric. The Cobra Cable to me seems like it would easily become abraided if it was hanging a platform and maybe getting pinched on the sides.

Maybe big spiced slings, with sheaths over them where they attach to the structure or tree (similar to cobra cable installation).


SZ
 

Tom Dunlap

Here from the beginning
Administrator
the next treehouse I build will be slung instead of bolted. My vision is to use some sort of webbing or rope. then slip a large bamboo section over the webbing to cover the material. It should protect the material from the weather and make for a pretty cool look.

I may use aircraft strand with swedged fittings as another option. Use a heavy webbing sling around the limb with a shackle and clip the eye of the cable on.
 

JesseHuffman

Active Member
[ QUOTE ]
the next treehouse I build will be slung instead of bolted. My vision is to use some sort of webbing or rope. then slip a large bamboo section over the webbing to cover the material. It should protect the material from the weather and make for a pretty cool look.

I may use aircraft strand with swedged fittings as another option. Use a heavy webbing sling around the limb with a shackle and clip the eye of the cable on.

[/ QUOTE ]

I love this idea of covering the ropes/cables with bamboo.
Gives it that whole Robinson Crusoe feel.
Like the one at Disneyland, which is now the updated to the Tarzan theme...lame

keep talking guys, Im writing this stuff down.
 
The real challenge whether nuts and bolts , stainless steel rods , or slings ..... is to allow for adjustments for load , sway , and tree growth or decline ... Good Luck .. ... PS: I only clicked on this thread because I think many Tree Buzzers support "The Tree House" ya know masterblasterhome.com .... my mistake ... Dave
 

poetmk

Active Member
thanks everyone - lots of good input. never thought about cobra not being a good choice! i'm going out to look at the trees next week and i'll take a bunch of pics and share. i think stability might be the biggest issue - i know what i would put up with - but then, i like swing-in in a tree ;)

peace -

matthew
 

scott_baker

Member
Hi All,
In my years with the treehousers I have seen just about everything. Just remember that if you use rope or cable and a load is applied against the tree part...the cable/rope is likely to be enveloped and could depress or cut off cambial flow.
I love the idea of tree houses that do not use penetrating hardware...however I do think that when used with intelligence you can minimize damage to the foundation trees. Some of the best use of cable hang style that I have seen used a bolt to anchor the cable.
Removable tree houses are another idea that I really like.
Check out www.treehouseengineering.com (Charlie Greenwood)
And remember what I tell folks who show me their primo tree and wish to build in it ="If I had that tree in my yard I would build my tree house with a view of it NOT in it."
Scott
 

poetmk

Active Member
that's a cool link dude. but i'm not going quite that intensive - simple, functional, safe for kid to get in and pretend they're pirates ;)
 

Burrapeg

Well-Known Member
What I learned building a few small tree houses in the past was that a single eyebolt or other penetrating anchor was a lot less harmful to a healthy tree than anything wrapped around the exterior which can cut off the flow of the sap and also hinder the growth of bark and such. The wood simply keeps growing up right past a single penetration and the tree can basically ignore the bolt as long as it is not overloaded with what it is holding. You leave a bit of room on the shank for the tree to expand in diameter outward along the bolt. You want to avoid multiple penetrations close together, like kids used to do when nailing chunks of 2x4 onto a tree as ladder rungs, with a handful of big nails on each piece. This can kill the wood growing in between the fastenings and acts as an ingress to rot and insects, etc.
 

SeanRuel

Well-Known Member
I'd definitely go with steel cable. There's a pretty big horse chestnut I've seen with slings/ cables holding it together. Arborist said they check/reposition the slings yearly to prevent trunk damage.
 

Burrapeg

Well-Known Member
You can still use steel cable; just hang it from big eyebolts. Easier to renew the cable that way anyhow.
 

RyanCafferky

Well-Known Member
I've assisted on a few professionally built treehouses and have built a treehouse that was my bedroom and now is my guesthouse. The hardware that professional treehouse builders use: Garnier limbs (aka TABS) are by far the best way to go. They are strong, have stood the test of time, and are the least harmful to the tree long term. The tree can continue growing around them and the brackets can be slid further out on the TAB to accommodate for growth. Design framing accordingly! Any wrapping or compression method leads to problems in a shorter time period than you would expect. Eye bolts and cables will be enveloped by the tree and disappear. Also from an engineering perspective, the cable method is less than ideal.

My favorite talks at the treehouse conference have been by Charlie Greenwood who is likely the best engineer in the treehouse world. He has helped develop the best hardware available for treehouses. His home is a 700 square foot treehouse supported by four trees. I was fortunate enough to get to remove a tree for him and see his house a few years ago. Hearing him speak changed my mind about multiple ideas I had about suspending treehouses.

Like Scott Baker said in his post, build a treehouse with a view OF NOT IN the nicest tree on the property.
 

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