How to Build a Climbing Wall

Wall climbing is popular for exercise and recreation as well as for rock climbing training. While there are commercial facilities where you can pay to wall climb, it may be much more convenient and cost-effective to have a climbing wall in your home, backyard, or at your business location. By following the steps below you can build a climbing wall:

Steps

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    Lay a 4 foot (121.92 cm) by 8 foot (243.84 cm) piece of plywood flat on the work surface.
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    Glue a 7 foot (213.36 cm) piece of 2 inch by 4 inch (5.08 cm by 10.16 cm) lumber to the back of the plywood on each side.
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    Glue a 4 foot (121.92 cm) piece of 2 inch by 4 inch (5.08 cm by 10.16 cm) lumber to the back of the plywood at the top and the bottom. Butt them up against the ends of the 7 foot (213.36 cm) support pieces. There may be a slight overhang, this is acceptable.
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    Flip the plywood over and drive wood screws through the plywood into the support lumber glued to the back at 4 inch (10.16 cm) intervals along all 4 sides.
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    Use the hardware provided by the manufacturer to attach manufactured stone hold climbing rocks to the front of the plywood using your own design or the pattern supplied by the manufacturer. Climbing rocks can be purchased at most home improvement stores or ordered from outdoor play equipment suppliers.
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    Drill a 1/4 inch (.635 cm) hole in each side stud of the panel 6 inches (15.24 cm) from the top.
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    Drill a 1/4 inch (.635 cm) hole in each side stud of the panel 5 inches (12.7 cm) from the bottom.
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    Build the adjustable side support for the first side using the instructions below.
    • Lay 1 of the 12 foot (365.76 cm) 2 inch by 4 inch (5.08 cm by 10.16 cm) lumber pieces flat on the ground and drill a 1/4 inch (.635 cm) hole 8 inches (20.32 cm) from the top in the middle of the board. This is board A.
    • Drill 6 holes, 1/4 inch (.635 cm) deep, at 3 inch (7.62 cm) intervals starting 8 inches (20.32 cm) from the bottom, up the middle of the board.
    • Lay another one of the 12 foot (365.76 cm) 2 inch by 4 inch (5.08 cm by 10.16 cm) lumber flat on the ground. Drill 6 more 1/4 inch (.635 cm) holes at 3 inch (7.62 cm) intervals starting 8 inches (20.32 cm) from one end, up the middle of the board, stopping 8 inches from the other end. This is board B.
    • Run a 1/4 inch (.635 cm) bolt through the end hole of board B into the bottom hole in the side stud of the climbing frame and fasten with a nut. Board A should point away from the front of the climbing wall.
    • Run a 1/4 inch (.635 cm) bolt through the end hole on the opposite end of Board B in to the single hole on Board A (not 1 of the 6 holes at the opposite end of the board) and fasten with a nut.
    • Run a 1/4 inch (.635 cm) bolt through the end hole on the opposite end of Board A in to the hole at the top of the climbing panel and fasten with a nut. The completed brace should form a triangle.
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    Repeat to assemble the second brace.
    • When supports braces are attached to both sides, the climbing wall should be standing on its own.
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    Adjust the angle of your climbing surface by removing the bolts from the top and bottom of the climbing panel, tilting the wall and reinstalling the bolts through the various holes in the side braces. This will adjust the pitch of the wall without disassembling and reassembling the support braces.

Tips

  • When you build a climbing wall, you may want to have someone help you attach the side supports. It is much easier when one person holds the frame in place while the other person tightens the hardware.
  • These steps detail how to build a 4 foot (121.92 cm) by 8 foot (243.84 cm) climbing wall, you can adjust the height and width easily by changing the height measurement and attaching panels together with bolts.
  • Some municipalities require a permit for any type of structure so check to find out if you need a permit to build a climbing wall.
  • Always use proper safety gear when using this climbing wall.

Things You'll Need

  • Plywood
  • Wood glue
  • Safety glasses
  • Drill with screwdriver attachment
  • Wood screws
  • Drill bits
  • Hammer
  • Pencil
  • Level
  • Tape measure
  • Package of commercial stone hold wall climbing rocks
  • 2 inch by 4 inch (5.08 cm by 10.16 cm) lumber
  • Saw
  • Ratchet and sockets
  • 1/4 in (.635 cm) bolts with nuts
  • Ladder

Article Info

Categories: Landscaping and Outdoor Building | Outdoor Play Equipment