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How to build a commercial grade climbing wall. Part Four

If you have ever wondered how commercial climbing gym facilities build and design Climbing and Bouldering walls, look no further! This is part two of our blog series about how we built the wall here at Skyhook, click here for part one, click here for part two, and click here for part three if you missed it.


The next part of the build is the wood. Which means T-Nuts. Lots and Lots of T-Nuts. So we recruited some volunteers. To put the T-nuts in, you start by measuring out an alternating grid on the 3/4 in plywood. You want to use Baltic birch plywood, and it needs to be at least 3/4 in thick.

Once you have your grid, clamp a bunch of sheets together and use the drill bit attachment to drill through all of the sheets. This helps prevent the bit from blowing out the back of the boards, but whatever piece of plywood is on the bottom will still likely get blown out, so make sure the side that is down is the back of the board.

Then once you have done that, put in the T-Nuts. I used 3 screw T-Nuts from Escape climbing, Ryan, the owner is awesome. Just after I finished the project, they came out with an even more industrial version but oh well, next time. I also put a dab of wood glue on the screw in T-Nuts to help make sure it doesn't spin during use. For this project, I have to be honest, it was a little overkill. Its nice at times, but it also makes it harder to replace damaged t-nuts then it should be. Pros and cons to everything.

Wood getting attatched.

You can see in this picture we have added in the cross pieces to screw the plywood to. We should have gone with super wide angle iron, like 3in by 1in. You can see how much work this mistake adds in the later pictures.