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Building a Backyard Ice Rink: How to Make DIY Backyard Ice Rink Brackets & Install Them

Updated: Dec 7, 2021


Adding adequate bracing to your backyard ice rink boards is a crucial part of building a backyard ice rink or ODR. Improper bracing of your backyard ice rink boards can lead to rink blow outs (when your ice rink boards separate under the pressure of the water leading to ripped tarps and no more water in your ice rink). In this post I will show you how to DIY build two styles of backyard ice rink bracing: The Triangle Ice Rink Bracket and the 2x2 Ice Rink Wood Stake.

Triangle Ice Rink Bracket



The Triangle Ice Rink bracket design offers exceptional support to your backyard ice rink boards because the angled piece that forms the triangle allows some of the outward pressure exerted from the water within the rink to be transferred down into the ground. You will see this style bracket used widely on many outdoor, backyard ice rinks.


NOTE: this triangle shaped ice rink bracket tutorial is based on supporting 24" high ice rink boards. If your ice rink boards are shorter, then please adjust your measurements accordingly. The top of the triangle ice rink bracket should not exceed the height of your board.


Material Needed:

  • 2x4 pressure treated wood cut to 19" (Ground Support)

  • 2x4 non pressure treated wood cut 19" long (Rink Support)

  • 2x4 non pressure treated wood cut to 17" long with 45 degree mitred edges (Triangle Support)

  • 6 (qty) 2" deck screws

  • 2 (qty) 2.5" outdoor pocket screws (optional)

  • 12" long rebar (I used candy cane shaped rebar)



Tools Needed:

  • Impact Driver

  • Kreg Jig to make pocket holes (optional)

  • Rubber Mallet

  • Drill with 1/2" drill bit

Build Instructions



  1. Take the Rink Support piece and drill two pocket holes into one end (optional: if you don't have a Kreg jig, you can skip this step)

  2. Stand the Rink Support piece up vertically on one end of the Ground Support piece, and secure it with the pocket screws. The Rink Support and Ground Support piece should form a 90degree 'L' shape when attached. (option: if you don't want to make pocket holes, you can end screw 2.5" or 3" deck screw up through the base of the Ground Support piece up into the Rink Support piece, or toe screws the pieces together)



  1. Take your angled Triangle Support and place it on the inside of the 'L' shaped piece. Secure the Triangle Support using the 4 of the 2" deck screws. Two screws to secure the Triangle Support piece to the Rink Support piece and two screws to secure the Triangle Support piece to the Ground Support.



  1. Drill a 1/2" hole in the overhang of the Ground Support piece of the bracket.



Installation Instructions

  1. Place the right angle corner of Triangle Ice Rink Bracket against the ground and your ice rink board

  2. Leaving the corner in place, tilt the Triangle Ice Rink Bracket forwards so the Rink Support piece lies flush against the ice rink board. Secure the Rink Support piece of the Triangle Ice Rink Bracket using 2 (qty) of the 2" deck screws. (TIP: it is important that the tip of the screws do not push through the other side of your rink board, if they do, then go with a shorter length deck screw)

  3. Step down with your foot on the Ground Support piece of the bracket to hold the bracket down to the ground. Take your rebar and hammer it in place with your mallet


.

Use these Triangle Ice Rink Brackets every 4 feet to secure your ice rink boards to the ground. If the water in your rink exceeds 8", add these brackets to brace your backyard ice rink every 2 feet.


2x2 Ice Rink Wood Stake Bracket



Sometimes your rink requires just a little extra bracing. To easily add additional bracing to your rink, you can make and use these easy 2x2 Ice Rink Wood Stake. These 2x2 Ice Rink Wood Stakes are a great way to add additional stability mid board and best used in conjunction with the Triangle Ice Rink Bracket or a store bought bracket such as those from Nice Rink. I would suggest only using these 2x2 wood stakes as your primary method of bracing if your backyard ice rink has minimal slope and contains less than 6" of water at your deepest point. Here's how to make these wood stakes:


Materials Needed

  • 2x2 lumber

Tools Needed

  • Mitre saw

  • rubber mallet

How to Make Wood Stakes for bracing:



  1. Measure the height of your ice rink boards. Add 8 inches to that number and that is the length to cut your stake. My height of my rink boards was 12" so I cut my stakes to be 20" long. This gives sufficient stake that will go into the ground and provide support.

  2. Measure 20" on your piece of 2"x2" lumber and make a cut using your saw. I used my mitre saw and also set up a stop block so I wouldn't have to measure the length of my stake every time I cut.

  3. Once your stakes are cut to length, you'll want to add a point to one end to make it easier to pound into the ground behind your ice rink boards. I did this by setting the angle of mitre saw to 60 degrees and cutting off the tip at an angle to create a point. After making the first angled cut, I turned the stake one 90 degree rotation and cut again to make the point even sharper.

  4. Voila, you have wood stakes ready to brace your backyard ice rink boards


How to Install Wooden Stake Bracing to your Backyard Ice Rink:

  1. Take one stake and place it at the mid section of the ice rink board. Place the stake so one flat side is touching the board.

  2. With a rubber mallet, hammer in the wooden stake until the top of the stake is flush with the top of your ice rink board


I hope you found these tutorials useful! For more 'Building a Backyard Ice Rink' videos and tutorials check out The Ruthless Maker You Tube Channel, and follow me on Instagram @theruthlessmaker for behind the scenes on my Backyard Ice Rink!

Happy Backyard Ice Rink building!


~ Ruth, The Ruthless Maker ~

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