Outdoor climbing wall


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Old 09-22-04, 07:39 AM
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Outdoor climbing wall

I'm planning on building a climbing wall outside, and was hoping to get any advice I can before starting. I'm planning to use 3 25-foot tall telephone poles spaced 8' on center set up in a triangle. I figure I can bury the poles 5' into the ground...should that be deep enough? The guy at the telephone company where I got the poles said they only bury theirs 4' and don't use any sort of concrete or anything.

I'll frame the wall with 2x4 studs and attach the plywood to that. I plan to go 2 sheets across (8') and 2-1/2 sheets high (20'). Any ideas on the best way to attach the wall to the poles??

Should I use pressure treated plywood? Is there a better option that will be weatherproof and safe to be rubbing/scraping against?

Thanks!!!
 
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Old 09-26-04, 07:38 AM
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Hello flashpipe

You've got quite an ambitious project ahead of you

Even though the Outdoor Living Forum would normally be the right place to post this, I think that moving your post over to the Lumber and Siding Forum for the lumber experts to comment on might give you better answers to your questions.

Good Luck with your project

Howie
 
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Old 09-26-04, 09:05 AM
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Do you have a crane to lift the poles or a house full of teenagers? These poles have got to weight in excess of 600 pounds apiece.

I would use whichever exterior rated board was less expensive. Eight foot centers will not be close enough to mount the panels to the poles. The fasteners need to be placed somewhat onto the panels themselves. I would figure 1.5 inches per panel for spacing the fasteners in from the edge.

I would use lag screws with fender washers to fasten the panels. 5 per edge. If these are new, green (penta-treated) poles, they will be hard as concrete. You will need to drill pilot holes.

I would go with the recommendations of the utility company as to how deeply the poles should be set. After all, it is done all the time by the utility company. The utility company bores the holes, so that may matter. I would be tempted to go 5 feet. After all, you have that to spare anyway.

The panels will need to be protected from the elements. Even if you use pressure-treated wood, paint them after they have dried a couple of weeks. This will keep water out of the edges.

On an eight foot span, the panels may flex uncomfortably for the climbers. It may be necessary to mount the panels on some sort of frame or a strong-back to keep flexion to a minimum.

This sounds like a challenging project. Check your homeowner's insurance.

Hope this helps.
 
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Old 09-27-04, 05:31 AM
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Thanks for the tips Chris. I don't have a house full of teenagers, but I've got a dozen or so climbers who can help...

Each of the two sections of wall will be 4 sections of 4'x8' 3/4" plywood that will be screwed to a 2x4 frame with studs placed at 18" centers.

The poles are ones they recently replaces on our road, so they're not as heavy or hard as the green ones.

So, you think I should use fasteners instead of attaching the frame directly to the poles? Here's what I was thinking were the 2 ways to attach the frame, http://www.brianandheather.info/wall/ but I hadn't thought about fasteners between the frame and the poles...

Should I paint the panels, or use some sort of waterproof, non-skid deck seal??

Thanks!!!
 
  #5  
Old 09-28-04, 09:10 AM
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The link loaded a page of text.

Fasten the frame and panel to the face of the poles with lag screws and fender washers.

I would paint the plywood and frame prior to assembly for durability and protection from the elements. I don't know what sort of traction surface may be desired for a climbing wall. Just paint or stain will be relatively slick.

Hope this helps.
 
  #6  
Old 01-02-05, 06:35 PM
utbubbad
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How is the progress? Do you have any pics, becuase I am wanting to build a wall similar.
 
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Old 01-03-05, 05:55 AM
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I actually haven't started yet, I had 3-35 foot telephone poles all ready, and one of my neighbors didn't realize I was saving them for something, so he cut them up!! I've got another neighbor who works for the phone company who's going to get me some more poles this spring.

I have learned a few things that might be helpful/ideas to try. I've been looking into "marine board" which is treated plywood manufactured specifically for outdoor use. Not sure how easy it will be to work with or how well it will hold the t-nuts, but it's worth looking into.

When I start work on this, I'll post some pics and lessons learned...

thanks!!
 
  #8  
Old 04-13-05, 11:46 PM
TT4
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Hi!If you wana build a climbing gym just taka a look at thise pictures

http://www.infohub.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1668

It was made of metal framework panelling with wood plates.All foot holds and grips are real rocks.I didn't want to buy this stuff!
 
  #9  
Old 09-06-07, 04:49 AM
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climbing wall on pine tree trunks

Hi I was reading this thread and have similar questions. First off, I'm in Sicily so buying different kinds of lumber is quite a challenge. I was initially considering attaching some sort of steal frame onto my garage (made of stone blocks and concrete) and attaching 18mm plywood panels to it but this is a lot of engineering and a lot of work.. a pain in the neck to say the least.

The other day, I was at my country house and I noticed that we have many tall, thick pine trees conveniently spaced 6-8' apart. I starting thinking what if I just screwed plywood panels to the trunks... any suggestions?

I don't think the plywood here is waterproofed, pressure treated, or anything else. Not sure they have many types of plywood here.. I was happy to even find it. Comes in 16mm 18mm 20mm. (19mm is about 3/4 inch if that helps)

It rains a bit here in the winter and the summer is very hot and dry. My wife says that the plywood is just going to rot..? I want to figure out how to water/weather proof.

This has been an ongoing project of mine for 2 years.. any help would be very very very helpful.
 
 

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