There are a number of reasons to setup a portable ballet barre, among them, is a need to have a ballet barre at home that can be placed in a number of locations or to be transportable for groups that are traveling and need a barre wherever they stop.
Essentially, serious dancers, whether they are professional or amateur, where they are experienced, or novices all require a good steady ballet barre for everyday use. Ballet barres are also great workout equipment for athletes and fitness fans, and as such, serve a much wider purpose than just providing an exercise bar for ballet dancers.
Jessica of thehomedweller.com said that among the many users of a ballet barre are gym owners, fitness competitors, dancers of all types and studio owners. As such, a portable barre serves as an excellent solution for cutting both costs and the need for a ballet barre that can go anywhere as well as stay in the studio or on location.
How to Make a Ballet Barre
There are a number of questions to answer regarding a ballet barres construction, and these include the target users, how old are they? What is their average height? And where will the barre be set up? The location defines the length of the barre.
Now, you can consider going for a telescopic barre that has legs with telescopic abilities, and this will make it a more versatile barre for all age groups. However, preparing such a barre will take a little longer and require patience accuracy and skill. If you prefer to prepare a standard portable barre, then you need to consider the height and length. Take into account that the standard sizes are 4 to 8 feet long.
Materials are also a consideration since you want the wood to be supple yet rigid and strong enough to support any weight load. The legs must be firmly secured on anchor plates so that the barre will stand evenly on a flat surface, but you want the barre to be lightweight and easy to transport. As such, construction requires considering assembly and disassembly routines for easy portability.
What you need
For the barre itself, choose a long aluminum piping. This is colder to the touch than wood, but it is lightweight. If you want the best performance, then take a single long piece of wood, and the diameter of the barre must be 4 centimeters or 1.57”.
The legs that support the barre will require the following components:
- L15-7 - 90° Elbow, 1-1/4"
- L10-7 - Single Socket Tee, 1-1/4"
- 133-7 - 133C - Plastic Plug
- Size 7 - Aluminium Sch. 40 Pipe, 1-1/4"
The elbows are to connect the barre to the end legs that are on either side. The single socket tees are used to support the barre and based on the length; you will require one per 5 feet of piping. This means, that if the barre is longer than 5 feet such as 10 feet, you will need to place a leg in the center section to provide ample support for the beam.
For a small 5 foot barre, you cut four pieces of pipe, the legs must be cut to the height you require, and two support barre 5’ each on for the actual barre (top) and one for structural support. You will need two lengths of pipe cut to 2’ each; these are the supports under the legs.
Step 1: Prepare the six pipes according to length, where there are 2 x 5’ barre and support, 2 x legs for the height you require, and 2 x 2’ for stability.
Step 2: Prepare 6 elbows and 4 T junctions.
Step 3: Attach an elbow to each side of the barre and fasten it in place.
Step 4: Attach a leg to each side of the elbow attached to the barre and fasten it in place
Step 5: Slide a T junction onto each leg and position it 1’ from the barre, but do not fasten them yet,
Step 6: Attach the support pipe into the T-junctions and fasten the T junctions.
Step 7: Attach a T junction at the base of each leg and fasten it in place.
Step 8: Slide a 2’ pipe through each T Junction and fasten it in place.
Step 9: Attach an elbow to the support bar and fasten it in place with the elbow facing downwards.
Step 10: Attach the plastic plugs to the end of the open elbow.
When you go to purchase your piping, its best to have the supplier cut them to size. Also, make sure the piping is properly smoothed over the cut surfaces.
This is a design for a standard 5’ long ballet barre, and the height is set by you for the target market. This is a fixed leg model, not a telescopic one. If you want a telescopic model, you will need to add two more pipes that are ¼” wider in diameter than the pipes you purchased and must be at least 50% the height of the leg height you require. You will attach the support legs to these pipes instead of the barre support legs.
Take 5/8” drill and drill holes every 5 cm from the base to the top of both the outer columns and the inner legs. Buy ¼” stainless steel holding pins, and use these to secure the legs in place through the holes. This way you can use just the height in 5 cm increments.