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The Creative Playthings Durango Wooden Playset
Written: May 6, 2003 (Updated Mar 31, 2005)
a Very Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
Pros:Comes pre-drilled, pre-beveled, pre-stained, high quality, safety features!
Cons:It doesn't come pre-assembled!
The Bottom Line: From start to finish, we couldn’t be happier with our playset. Simple to order, a variety of accessories, easy to assembly and it looks incredible!
Those of you who regularly read my reviews know that I am a firm believer in going without something until I can afford to get the one I really want. Last summer, I started researching wooden playsets, looking at everything from build-it-yourself to having someone come out and build it for you, and everything in between. This past February, after debating between a Creative Playthings playset and one from Cedarworks, I took advantage of the winter sale Creative Playthings offered and purchased the Naturaline Durango playset.
So now that we decided where we were going to get our playset (www.creativeplaythings.com), we had to then decide which playset to get, and how to accessorize it!
Creative Playthings offers the Durango playset in one of two finishes. The Naturaline finish is 100% natural, chemical-free, splinter-free lumber from managed timberland. It comes finished with a redwood stain and includes a lifetime warranty against wood rot and insect damage. The Special Pine set is made from treated premium southern yellow pine, sanded smooth, splinter-free and kiln-dried in their own factory. It comes finished with a brown stain and is backed by a 15-year warranty against wood rot and insect damage. Because we liked the longer warranty, the chemical-free appeal, and the redwood stain, we opted for the Naturaline set.
All Creative Playthings playsets all come with the following safety features: Their wood, whether Naturaline or Yellow Southern Pine, is very specially cut and treated in their own factory, the top and end ladders are made of either ash (Naturaline sets) or hard Pine, sanded smooth and water sealed, each set comes with Safety handles for ease of access into the gyms, all of the hardware is recessed and covered, the angles have extra braces, and the swing hardware is extra duty.
Creative Playthings offers the Durango playset as just a Gym (no swings), a 2-position set (two swings), a 3-position set (two swings and a trapeze) or a 4-position set (two swings, a trapeze and a two child glider). Knowing what you know, can you guess which set we purchased? Yes indeed, the 4-position set.
The Order and Delivery
We called on a Saturday to order our playset and accessories. The person who assisted us was wonderful, knowledgeable and helpful. Once we had placed our order, he calculated the weight of our total packages, and deducted the shipping costs from our final order, telling us that we would be responsible for paying that amount (or less) to the actual shipper. The packages arrived within a week. Because of the discounted shipping (I cant even remember the name of the company who delivered it), my brother had to help unload the 7 or 8 big boxes that then sat in our garage for the next couple months.
The Durango Playset
The 4-position Durango playset comes with the following:
- A Climbing Tower with 4x4 Corner Posts (rather than the usual 2x2)
- A 60" x 84" play platform, raised 5 feet off the ground
- A Built-In Sandbox with Corner Seats (Under platform)
- Access Ladder with Flat Steps (rather than usual dowel steps)
- Green Gambrel Shaped Tent for top of platform
- 4x4 end ladder rails for the Swingset side
- Double 2x6 top ladder (from which swings hang)
- 1 3/8 hardwood dowels for end ladder
- 4-Strand rope ladder
- Plastic Coated Swing Chains
- Extra Heavy Duty Swing Hangers
- Two Sling Swings
- One Ring Trapeze
- One Back to Back Glider (for 2 children)
- One 10-Foot Slide (your choice: wave or straight)
- Hardware Package / Ground Stakes
Rather than making underneath the platform a sandbox, we chose to purchase the optional play walls ($199) and play floor ($199), making that area more of a playhouse. We also purchased an Infant Swing ($23), which we put up in place of the trapeze, for this summer at least. We bought the telephone ($15), telescope ($15) and periscope ($15), all of which attach to the playset.
Next summer, we will be adding the Skybox Playdeck ($799), a platform that is elevated 7 feet off the ground, and comes with a flat stepped access ladder from the inside of the original Durango platform. We will be putting the sandbox underneath the Skybox, ordering the sandbox cover ($59) and attaching the way-cool Spiral Slide ($659) to it. Because my son will be a bit older next summer, we will probably also order a couple bigger swings such as the Toddler Swing ($30) and the Buoy Ball Swing ($69). The last thing that I really want, in order to complete my (I mean the kids) playset is the Lunch Counter ($119), that is a one sided Picnic Table that sits on the outside of the original Durango Fort.
Other accessories offered:
Swings: A Stand-n-Swing ($23), a Special Needs Swing ($99), a Tireswing ($119).
Add-Ons: a Wood Rock Climbing Wall ($289), a Fireman's Pole ($49), Wood Access Ramps ($269), a Built-In Picnic Table (for under the Durango platform, $179), a Two-Person Lawn Swing ($249), and a Chin-Up Bar ($39).
We built a play set area by framing a rectangle out of Landscape Timbers and filling the area with about 8 inches of playground mulch. We then followed the relatively easy instructions to build the Durango. We started early on a Saturday morning and was finished by Sunday afternoon, with very few curses. It was relatively painless, and with the clear instructions went up quickly.
Final Thoughts and Recommendations
From start to finish, we couldnt be happier with our Creative Playthings Durango playset. It was simple to order, comes with a variety of accessories, has many more offered, was (relatively) easy to assembly and it looks incredible!
If you have any questions at all, Ill be happy to answer from our own personal experience, or you can visit their very comprehensive website (www.creativeplaythings.com). I urge you to order their catalog, or call a representative (1-800-24-SWING).
Now I have to run
does anyone know how to teach a three year old the concept of keeping her swing going on her own? I can only say kick your legs out. Pull your legs in. Push. Pull. so many times!
Happy Swinging and Sliding!
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Amount Paid (US$): 3000
Type of Toy: Other
Age Range of Child: Whole Family
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