Howdy and thanks for checking out this DIY post.It used to be hard to find 4 way connectors so I learned to be resourceful eons ago. With the easier access of 4 way connectors on the internet I was so excited to be able to use them... until I saw the price. Plus shipping. Also, I'm terrible about wanting to building jumps and weave poles on a whim and need to be able to go to Home Depot or Lowe's and full fill these urges immediately.
This DIY PVC jump blog post details out how to build dog agility jumps without the use of anything but PVC pipe and Tee connectors as the materials. No 4 ways, no Ls, no confusing maths. Well, there is SOME math, but its not too complex.
Cut ALL the PVC. I highly recommend a miter saw if you're doing a lot of jumps. They are about $120 from Sears, Home Depot, Lowe's etc and you can use them for just about any project. No really, I love mine so much...
You will need two uprights, one bottom crossbar, four "feet," one or two "jump bars," and then two "nub" pieces (see next pic) PER JUMP.
Put these in neat obvious piles so you don't go insane later wondering what is for what.
These are the "nubs" and are what allows us to not utilize the 4 way connectors and just Tees.
I cut these about 2-3" long. Each jump will need two.
This is the basic layout of where everything goes to make this work.
From the left: bottom crossbar, Tee, nub piece, Tee turned the other way, then the feet into that last Tee.
I do NOT glue anything at this point in case I had a brain fart and mucked up measurements or put the wrong pieces in weird places.
Add the uprights and adjust them to make sure they are perpendicular (coming straight up out of) to the ground. Please use a level-ish floor NOT grass or sand or carpet or fluffy bunnies as it can really skew your uprights and look uneven (resulting in the bars not setting right in the cups at the end).
Once you are happy, its time to glue. Be sure to use PVC primer (the purple stuff) and the glue. Basically you slap the purple between ANY surface that will touch ANY other surface - inside and out. Let it dry (like 5 minutes or so) before moving onward to the glue.
With the purple primer dry, now you can start gluing. This stuff adheres FAST so be sure of what you want to do. You can make some small adjustments as you go, so don't completely freak out but be aware that if you take your time and go all perfectionist on it it WILL harden crazy pants fast.
If you are doing caps on the ends of the pipe, now is the time to do it.
NOTE! Purple primer stains the WORLD! It will color your flooring, self, clothing, children, cats, dogs, etc a lovely shade of dark purple that will not come out even after significant cleaning, GoJo Orange, and so forth. We lay newspaper or an old sheet under our work area to help and make sure Fido and Frisky are removed from the area because they seem to be attracted to the stuff for no real reason even if they have been sleeping contently until this point...
YAY! Congratulations you now have jumps made, glued and ready for action.
Except... well wait. We need jump cups.
For these jumps I bought jump cup strips. I have made my own cups for forever but honestly, its too tiresome, too dangerous, and not worth the effort in the long run. If you want to know how to do it, you basically cut a Tee in half and viola. Its just not the easiest thing to do in practice.
The jump strips are from Clean Run that I used: HERE
The strips are technically for 1" PVC and these are 3/4" PVC jumps in this demo. As such, they slide right over the poles as shown to the left instead of clipping on as the product states.
Carefully measure and mark as instructed on the jump cup strip info sheet. If you are using another method, bottom line is don't forget to measure from the bottom and not the top down to achieve the most accurate jump height. Measure from the ground, not the top of the bottom crosspiece too.
Next we screw the strips in place. The screws that came with my jump cup strips were self tapping (they drill themselves into the PVC) which was epically awesome, but be aware your screws may or may not be that way. In this case, you might need to get a drill bit about the same size or slightly smaller to drill "pilot" or starter holes and THEN screw the screws in place.
Boom! Real jumps with awesome jump cup strips and not a 4 way connector in sight!
You may prettify your jumps as you see fit at this point but I'm boring and keep mine white :)
Thanks and get building!
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