Build a Backyard Pirate Ship Playhouse April 07, 2016 16:27 1 Comment

If there's one thing the Amish have right that's going for them, it's their work integrity. They are routinely up before sunrise actively doing their daily tasks and chores. Another thing they have is their venerate collective craftsmanship.

If you ever find yourself in Lancaster, PA, you'll see an expansive and copious assortment of all things wooden; from toys, furniture, knick knacks and play-sets. In fact, a casual Internet search for pre-built playhouses and play-sets will land you to several companies based squarely out of Amish country. Funny how you'll always find some type of pirate ship or vessel throw in the mix.

If you don't have any interest in spending the time toward building your own kid sized, positive sea level water vessel, the pre-built options are a great choice. The professional quality that goes into them guarantees they'll last as long as your son or daughter's childhood. The only real downside is the upfront cost. If you're looking at this page right now, that probably crossed your mind too.

Save Money by Building Your Own Pirate Ship! 


Most pre-built pirate ship designs cost anywhere between $4,000-$8,000 before shipping, taxes and other fees are applied. With the eight different pirate ship playhouse plans provided at, you'll be able to easily save 3X those amounts.  When you're the one who is taking on the project, you'll be able to eliminate costs in several areas, including:

  • Labor
  • Material Markups
  • Shipping & Handling
  • Other Hidden Fees

If you have just basic hand and power tool handling skills, you can easily save a lot of cash, and potentially have a fun, family weekend by picking up the hammer yourself.

8 Different Ship Plans to Pick From

We know that everyone has differing sized families, yards, budgets and experience, so we're offering a wide range of designs to meet your needs.  If you have even a little of a DIY mindset, you're sure to find the right plan for the job.

Paul's Free Pirate Ship Plan

The most simple, smallest and economical of the pirateship plans, the free design is ideal for folks who have very young children and don't want to their hands too dirty.  Not only can this ship be built for less than $150, the entire thing can be constructed in less than on day, granted you have the basic hand tools to finish the job.  A great entry project for the beginner!


Meager Maureader Pirate Ship Plan

The next size up from the free design, the Meager Maureader is a more complex take on the smaller plan, with more square footage and details for a more ambitious home owner.  Still a ideal choice for smaller yard sizes, this plan can be constructed for less than $200.  If you have 1-2 kids aged 3-6, the Meager Maureader will have no trouble conquering the high seas!


Crippling Clipper Pirate ship Plan

The moderate take on the outdoor pirate ship repertoire and also the most economical, the Crippling Clipper won't take long to build and will hardly make a dent in the back wallet.  Named after the small, narrow but speedy sailing ships of the 19th century, this two level and compact play-set is perfect for smaller yards and younger kids.  Still sporting over 100 square feet of play space, when the imagination kicks in, your kids will be plundering and salvaging all those neighborhood kids who happen to stop by.


Sea King Bunk Bed Pirate ship Plan

The only indoor design, the Sea King pirate ship plan can be used as a bunk bed or interior play structure.  Providing about 100 square feet of play space, this design provides loads of imagination fuel and play activities with it's four ways in and out including a slide, front ladder and rear stair case.  Plus there's room to add in six real shed windows to maximize the realism.  Sure to be a hit!  Don't forget to check out the other indoor playhouse designs offered here too.


Brawny Brigantine Pirate ship Plan

The next size up depicts more of a mini-ark than a pirating vessel, but just throw a treasure chest on board plus some mast cordage and you'll have yourself a full fledged charlatan gondola in no time!  While still being very easy to construct, the two level, Brawny Brigantine provides 50% more play area than the Clipper with not one, but two masts to boot!  After tying up and installing some rope rigging and railings, plus a slide and fire pole, you may just have the supreme kid time consuming, parent stress reliving, backyard water craft.  Don't forget to pick up a jolly roger flag too!

Edward Thatch Pirate Ship

Now things are starting to get quite interesting.  If you know anything about classic Caribbean piracy, you'll know Edward Thatch is the real name for the notorious pirate, Black Beard.  While I can't say for sure that his boat looked quite like this one, your kids won't care and will probably have a better time running about, marauding and causing a ruckus than Black Beard ever did. 

This pirate ship contains 200 square feet of space with tons of ways in and out!  Two levels with a split 2nd level, plus a rock wall, gang plank, fire pole and slide!  This is pretty much the exact same thing you would find at a retailer for $3,000, minus the fun of constructing it yourself.

Davy Jones' Locker Pirate Ship

The next step up from the Edward Thatch, this pirate ship, dubbed the Davy Jones' Locker is packed to the gills in exciting and fun ways to come in, exit and interact with.  The only design to have a roofed section, this 3 level pirate ship is ready for an adventure.

Features two trap doors for a quick escape, gang plank, six ways to get in and out, interactive crow's nest and roofed section.  A total of 250 square feet allows for loads of space for kids to be kids.  A personal favorite!

High Seas Pirate Ship Plan

The ultimate backyard accessory.  If a pirate needs to bring out the big guns, the High Seas Pirate Ship is the ticket.  400 square feet isn't for the faint of heart, but if such things cause you apprehension, you're in the wrong line of work for such frivolous doubts.  Three floors with a captain's quarters and split 2nd level are just some of the cool design incorporations.  Johny Depp eat your heart out!

Easy to Follow, Step by Step Plans

The PDF plans for all five of the pirate ships come with rich, 3d CAD images for every single step of the process that's easy to follow and understand.  Below are a few sample pages from the Edward Thatch design.

To get an even better feel for our plans, look into the free plans we offer as well.  There you'll find a great variety of themes that rare easy to build for little up front cost.  If you're looking for even more playhouse ideas that you can build, check out our complete playhouse plan collection!