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29Jun/110

Securing A Stake In The Ground

Every day that you decide to set up your bounce house is a day that will be remembered fondly by friends and family. Bounce houses are a remarkable, nearly unending source of entertainment and thrills for all ages. However, proper set-up of the bounce house, water slide, or other inflatable device is a highly critical step. An improper set-up of a bounce house can lead to possible collapse later in the day, and should be avoided and prepared for well ahead of time. One of the most important set pieces of a well-constructed set-up site is the placement of the bounce house stakes.

All bounce houses ship with at least four stakes, each specifically designed to keep your bounce house in place, and statistically unlikely to come loose during the day’s events. Each stake that you receive will be at least 12 inches long, and depending on the size of the bounce house itself, can stretch to nearly 3 feet in length. The length of your particular stakes has been determined by bounce house manufacturers and designers during the initial construction of the bouncer. The bigger your bounce house is, the more stakes it will likely require to remain safely attached to the ground. Each stake is notable in that its top will be bent at a 90-degree angle, in contrast with the rest of the stake.

Try to avoid pounding the stakes into the ground on an angle; instead, try to hammer them down as straight and evenly as possible. Typically, stakes for tents, canopies, and other similar objects can be hammered into the ground on an angle to make it harder for the loops or string to slide off the metal piece. Doing so is not required for stakes made for inflatable devices because of the bend at the top of each stake. The bent portion of the stake allows the bounce house’s tie-down loop to simply be slipped over the top of the nail. As long as the bend at the top is pointed away from the bounce house, the loop on the stake will be held firmly in place. When you are hammering in the stakes, make sure that you do not leave the top of the stake too far exposed out of the ground. This can lead to people accidentally tripping over the tie-down loop. Pound each spike down, but not as far as pounding it completely underground.

There are several different tests that you can perform on the ground that will act as the foundation for a bounce house site to make sure that it is acceptable for initial and repeated usage. Start by simply hammering one stake into the ground where you feel like setting up. Take note of how easy or difficult it is to drive it into the soil. If the ground is too dry, the stake may easily come free from slight movement in the dirt. However, if you find yourself struggling to even pound one stake into the ground, it will be more of a chore to properly secure the rest of the stakes. It can also imply that the ground you have chosen might be too hard for a bounce house to be safely inflated and used for the day. The best combination of soil and grass for a set-up site should allow the stake to easily be hammered into the ground, while at the same time is hard to move once in the ground. For these features, be on the lookout for freshly watered grass which looks healthful in appearance. Just remember that grass that has just been watered can rub the water off on the bounce house’s vinyl material, so a tarp separating the grass from the bounce house’s floor would be a worthy addition to the set-up site. Also, take note of the trees and other forms of nature surrounding the proposed bounce house site. If you notice that the trees and grass in the area appear somewhat wilting, with brown or sparse leaves and vegetation, it well likely means that the area has not seen rain or garden watering in some time.

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