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Building Your Own Climbing Wall (Book)

Excellent book packed with info, tricks, highly illustrated--will save you time/money.

Steps to Build a Home Climbing Wall

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Climbing Holds Crash Pads Chalk Bags Locking Carabiner Bouldering Brush Training Boards Climbing Tape T-Nuts

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Adjustable Angle Exterior Climbing Wall Basement Wall Campus Board Garage Wall

Outside, Exterior Home Climbing Walls

Tolono, Illinois.

I made this in two weeks. I could have done it in a week but had some bad weather and had some down days. I designed it using SketchUp. This made it easy to take some of the unusual angles and miter cuts directly from the CAD program. The footers are buried about 30" deep, below the frost line here.When I put the design together I thought I would frame it first, then put up the sheathing. However it became too difficult to put the frame together. Instead I built sections and pieced the sections together. I put additional bracing every 16"

This is great for kids too. The kids climb on the lower sections which lean inward. The higher sections lean outward and work really well for adults who need negative angles for strength and endurance training.

The top is open to the weather. I need to do something better there. For now I throw a tarp over it and tie it down with bungees and hooks at the bottom.

I dug up the sod around a 6' perimeter around the climbing wall, then laid down landscaping plastic and put in mulch wood chips. This makes a decent landing and I don't have to haul around the crash pad, which makes it even better for the kids.


Australia, by Mark

3m high bouldering wall. Limit was 3m to avoid need for a building permit. Built in modules, based on the size of the ply sheets. Concrete slab, with anchor bolts, over 400 holds now on the wall. Anchors on the roof allow top roping for the kids. Designed from sketch plans. Cost: Slab $300; timber & paint $1,000; holds $1,000; hardware $1,000. Total: $3,300.


Troutdale, Oregon

This is a climbing / bouldering for the kids. Read more about this wall on his website, Our Backyard Climbing Wall
(Pictures and text used with permission)

The climbing wall fills the niche of a kids' play structure perfectly, and can be built higher that an indoor climbing wall. The "climbing wall rules" are posted on the inside wall. The crash pad is a used futon mattress found on Craigslist. We got the plastic cover free from a mattress store.

The bark chips are also in place to make the landing zone a little safer. They are eight inches thick. They were picked up for free from an arborist.

The 4x4s, the 2x6s and the plywood are all treated outdoor wood. The plywood is 3/4" treated outdoor plywood for the sides, and 1/2" for the platforms. There's a hangboard on the other side made of an old shelf.

One lesson learned, when drilling the t-nut holes is to put the climbing side up, and drill down into the wood. The bottom will splinter when the bit comes through, and if you put the T-nuts in the opposite direction than you drill, it covers up some of the splinters.

This climbing wall took 300 T-Nuts, 90 on each 8x4 sheet of plywood. That left some extra. There are 70 climbing holds on three sides.


Argentina, by Lapacho

"Mi muro de escalada domestico." Climbing holds attached to the side of a house in Argentina.


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