Note: Each week I try to share a popular post from the archives. This post was originally published in February 2014
Saturday we’re having Gabriel’s Eagle Scout Court of Honor here at our house. He passed his Eagle Scout Board of Review in October but since he wanted to have his Court of Honor here we needed to wait until the weather was a little more predictable to have it.
When Christian had his Court of Honor we used some landscaping timbers to build a self supporting bridge. Each timber has one point of the Scout Law on it and the boys read the points as they assemble the bridge. Josiah chose to do his Court of Honor a little different and didn’t use the bridge.
Gabriel has decided to use it, so we brought it out and made sure it was all up to par. Then last week a reader asked about it, after seeing it in the post about Christian’s Court of Honor. I started to type out instructions and it was complicated. So I decided to put it together and take pictures as we go.
You need 14 landscaping timbers. You will cut 2 in half. So, to build the bridge you need 12 long timbers and 4 short timbers.
To start the bridge put 2 short timbers parallel about 6 feet apart. Then put one long timber under the front of the left short timber and over the front of the right short timber. Now, take a second long timber and put it under the front of the right short timber and over the front of the left short timber – behind the first long timber. You should have an X like in the photo.
Now, make an X on the other end of the short timbers. If you are using this as part of a scout ceremony each boy will read his part and then put the timber where it’s supposed to be and straighten up the bridge as needed.
Lay the other 8 timbers on the top of the two short timbers.
Now it’s time to put the third short timber on top of the 8 long timbers but under the top of the X’s on the left side.
Now, do the right side. You might need to pick up the X a little.
Push the short timbers in until they are lined up with the short timbers underneath.
You’re done! The bridge is very stable and strong. We’ve had as many as 10 teenage boys on the bridge at once and it did fine. Having said that, I have no idea how it will do over time if left outside. However, I do think it would be a cool bridge for a little creek crossing.