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Ok For Little Ones, Big Kids Beware

Reviewing: Big Backyard Bellevue Ii  |  Rating:
jallyson By jallyson on
Badge: Publisher | Level: 5 | Children & Parenting Expertise:
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We bought this swingset a couple of years ago for our then 3 yr old daughter. It was on sale, and we couldn't afford a true cedar set, so we went with this one to save money. I wish we had waited and gotten a better set.

The safety of this swingset leaves a lot to be desired. The slide is very flimsy, so that when my 45 lb child slides down it, it bows down under her weight. The boards on the platform area of the set often lift up, and my husband had to go out and buy new, longer bolts to hold them down. The chain on one of the swings has already rusted and broken, due to the plastic coating which traps moisture inside. This summer I had children I was babysitting, and I had to make a rule that only two were allowed on at a time, since the whole swingset tips, even when it's staked down. (Yes, we leveled it.) The wood is already splintering badly, so the kids can no longer use the monkey bars. The rope ladder snapped while my daughter was playing on it after only one year of use, as well.

Assembly of this product practically requires a degree as well- the instructions were muddled, and it took my husband and a friend (both of whom are mechanically inclined) 6 hours to assemble.

There are many good things about this set as well- there is a great area under the platform where we have a Little Tikes picnic table set up for our daughter, which she loves. The green canopy has held up very well, and the two-seated swing also works great. The plastic coating over some of the wood has held up well, also.Features-wise, the set offers a lot, and my daughter still gets tons of use out of it- in fact, she loves it!

My recommendation would be to use this set as a starter set for younger children, but once our daughter gets older, like next summer, we will probably get rid of this one and invest in a sturdier set.

If you can afford a nicer set, then get one. If you can only afford this set, I'd say wait and save your money for a nicer set.