Hangboards are a fantastic training tool for the intermediate to advanced climber. They’re perfect for increasing grip strength, and there are a variety of affordable options for you to pick from. And while they are sometimes known for causing acute and chronic injuries when overused, smart hangboard training is a great way to maintain strength when you’re not able to climb often enough, or to bust through a plateau and climb harder routes.
Most climbing gyms nowadays do have hangboards, campus boards, and other training tools, but sometimes the inconvenience of going to the gym for a brief hangboard workout is not practical.
For others, the typical installation method of mounting it to the wall poses a problem. Whether you’re renting and don’t want to damage your space, or simply don’t want a permanent hangboard mounted in your living room, it can be an issue. And a DIY freestanding hangboard isn’t always practical. They require more materials, tools, and time – and they’re a pretty large intrusion on most living spaces.
But not to worry, this article will show you how to mount your hangboard without drilling holes in your wall. With a few supplies and less than an hour, you can have your own portable hangboard mounted. No carpentry skills are needed, it costs less than $100, and it causes no damage to your home. Sound good?
Let’s get started. Below are the steps and tips to follow so you can get training today.
Related: Best Hangboards for Climbing Grip Strength Training, How to Get Stronger With Hangboard Training
Materials & Tools Needed
To get started, you’ll need to gather your tools and materials. Conventional mounting requires screwing a board into the wall and then attaching the hangboard in place.
While this is a very easy and secure method, this tutorial is for those who cannot damage the house while mounting a hangboard. It’s also perfect for travellers – this portable hangboard can go anywhere with you.
For this method, you’ll need:
- 1 – Hangboard
- 1 – Wooden 2”x8” board
- 1 – Pull-up bar for your door frame
- 4 – Bike Hooks
- Wood Screws
- Saw (Power or hand)
The hangboard is obviously the centerpiece of this setup, so you’ll want to get one you like. We did an in-depth comparison of hangboards here, but for this setup my favorite is the Metolius Project – or the Wood Grips II if you prefer wood.
The real Mac Daddy of hangboards though is the notorious Trango Rock Prodigy, but this must be installed on a larger, 2×10 piece of wood and you won’t benefit from the adjustable-width feature if installed using the Rock Prodigy method.
How To Mount a Hangboard on a Pull Up Bar
1. Assemble Pull Up Bar
To start, you’ll need to purchase and assemble a mountable pull-up bar that can be hung in your doorway. I recommend this one. It’s sturdy, fits all common doorways, easy to assemble, and isn’t expensive.
2. Screw Hangboard to a Piece of Wood
Next, cut your 2×8 board to be just a bit wider than your doorway. Once it’s cut to length, screw your hangboard onto it securely. It’s important to get this step right – you don’t want your hangboard falling down or breaking during use!
3. Screw Bike Hooks into the Wood
Drill 4 pilot holes slightly smaller than your Bike Hooks into the top of your 2×8. Be sure to drill straight in – too much of an angle will weaken the setup. Then screw the hooks into these holes.
4. Hang Your New Portable Hangboard
Hang your Pull-Up Bar in the doorway, then hook your Bike Hooks over it to mount your hangboard.
Always be sure to carefully test the strength and security of your setup before trusting it completely (good practice for climbing in general!)
- Mount the hangboard high on the wooden board – you’ll already lose some height with the hanging pull-up bar.
- To protect the sides of the door frame, install furniture pads or line the edges of the wooden board with a soft cloth where it contacts the door frame.
- Choose a hangboard that isn’t too heavy or bulky. Again, with limited space in a doorway you’ll want to avoid going with a hangboard that’s oversized or extremely heavy. Small, lightweight boards – such as the Metolius Project – are ideal for these types of mounts while still having enough different holds to keep you training for years.
- Consider making a more permanent training station when time permits, as this will allow you to add a pulley system and take your training to the next level.
Although we have gone into detail to show you how to mount a hangboard without drilling in the easiest way possible, it’s good to know there are alternatives for you to consider.
First, let’s take a quick look at a manufactured solution. Though pricier than the DIY hangboard mounting options, Blank Slate Climbing offers a variety of options that are ready out of the box for you to mount a hangboard above a door without drilling.
This method is done by modifying the Pull-Up Bar and mounting the wooden board/hangboard assembly directly to it. This has the benefit of saving height by not hanging lower from the Bike Hooks. It does however require a bit more effort.
To mount your hangboard with this method, you’ll need:
- 1 – Hangboard
- 1 – 2×8 board
- Wood Screws
- 2 – ½” Galvanized Flange
- 2 – ½” x 4″ Galvanized Steel Pipe Nipple
- Duct Tape
Start by assembling the hangboard/wooden board as above. Next, screw together one flange on each steel pipe nipple. Then, remove the end cap from the handle of the Pull-Up Bar. Slide the steel pipe + flange into the open end of the Pull-Up Bar. If it’s loose, wrap the pipe in duct tape until it fits snugly.
Next, screw the flange to the back of the wood board/hangboard assembly. It should look like this:
After that, you’re all set! Go hang the portable hangboard in your doorway and get started with one of our Hangboard Workouts.
I hope this article has helped you learn how to mount a hangboard without drilling, and you’re able to install a portable hangboard without damaging your walls. Feel free to message or comment with any questions, feedback, or pictures of what you build!
See you out there!
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