How to Build a Rock Climbing Wall – Inspiration and Instructions

World Class Rock Climbing is Just Down the Hall

It is easy to build a home rock climbing wall that will provide you endless hours of fun and have every rock climber on the block suddenly buddy-buddy with you. Surprisingly it doesn’t take as much space, skill, or commitment as you might think. Below I’ve compiled some of the best home rock climbing wall content I could find to save you time and teach you the basics of what you will need to know.

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How to Build a Rock Climbing Wall:

1. Before strapping on that dusty tool belt watch this video

Not the most exciting home rock climbing wall on the web, but extremely relevant because it represents the type of wall most of us can afford and have room for. This video is one of my favorites because it reveals the mysteries of the construction behind the plywood, without the boring drone of someone rambling about each obvious step along the way. I wish I’d have had this video playing in the garage when I built my first wall!

bracket for rock climbing wall

Pay attention to how the boards connect to each other and how they connect to the walls. The header board on the ceiling and back wall go up first and attach to the studs behind the drywall. Get some very substantial screws or lag bolts for this step.

The metal brackets holding the boards to each other are called hangers and can be picked up at local department stores, or Amazon has a nice selection of them here: (Simpson Strong Ties are a popular brand of these).The builder here used 2x6s and put some smaller perpendicular boards between studs to cross brace. Personally, for a wall that small I have used 2×4 successfully and did not cross brace. The sheeting at the end provides all the rigidity you could ever ask for . Plus the cross braces inevitably end up right where you want to put a t-nut for climbing holds (not good).

2. Load up on some tasty “how to build a rock climbing wall” tips

how to build a rock climbing wallI wrote this article on The Recreationalist about how to build a rock climbing wall to keep kids active all year long. It has heaps of links to good online content, some of which you’ll find around this site in other spots, plus a video of my kids on their wall, which you’ll also find in this site’s gallery section. Apologies for the redundancy, but it’s a popular post with tips I don’t want you to miss.

3. The Holy Grail of “how to build a rock climbing wall” info

Metolius how to build a home bouldering wall

Metolius – How to Build a Rock Climbing Wall eBook

Had I not found the Metolius How to Build a Home Bouldering Wall ebook, the engineering of my walls would likely be something out of my head and much less safe. Some time was spent making these instructions easy to follow with great 3D model illustrations.

3. No thanks, just looking

Browse around in the home rock climbing wall gallery and get some ideas. While you are there, submit some of your own for consideration. It is brand new so be patient while it grows.

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7 responses to How to Build a Rock Climbing Wall – Inspiration and Instructions

  1. Hi

    I wondered if you can help with my question – I am looking to build a climbing training wall in a outhouse which currently doesn’t exist. Does it need a super strong structure to hold a DIY wall? Would a flat pack typed of outhouse be okay to attach a climbing wall to it? Trying to save money and avoid having to pay for proper builders. Ideally I would like to have some overhang stuff on the ceiling as well… might be asking too much!

    thanks in advance

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