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I'm building a slide, but I can't find any information on what angles are safe yet fun.

What's the appropriate range of angles for a slide?

  • Depends on length of slide, width, how high the sides are and so on. Low angled slides are more dangerous IMO. Kids walk up these backwards. – DMoore Nov 30 '16 at 19:43
  • @DMoore My observations indicate that kids will walk up any slide regardless of angle. The danger comes, asid from falling off, in exiting the slide too fast. – Carl Witthoft Dec 1 '16 at 16:53
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Per the Michigan State Handbook for Public Playground Safety:

It is recommended that the average incline of a slide chute be no more than 30 degrees. This can be measured by determining that the height to length ratio (as shown in Figure 18) does not exceed 0.577. No span on the slide chute should have a slope greater than 50 degrees.

There is some other really good information in that booklet as well regarding the design of a slide.

  • There is a lot of good information in there. I had never realized so much could be said about the design of a good slide. – Seph Reed Nov 30 '16 at 19:53
  • a 50 degree slide would be pretty insane. That's over 45º, which is really really steep. And now I want to build one. – Wayne Werner Nov 30 '16 at 22:40
  • @WayneWerner I'm pretty sure I encountered some as a kid in the 80's (but, memory that long ago could easily be faulty). They tended to be really fast in the middle but with a longer exit plane at the end, to give time to slow down. The slides I see today are not as steep but tend to have a really short exit (sometimes even non-existent). – phyrfox Dec 1 '16 at 2:11
  • @phyrfox playgrounds were a lot more fun/dangerous. We had a rocket ship park that had some worn diamond plating that formed a ramp probably 30'-60'. If you had the right slippery shoes you could "ski" down it. Chain link surrounding it to keep you from plummeting 20' off the side. – Wayne Werner Dec 1 '16 at 5:30

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