How To Make A DIY Rappelling Tower: Top 10 Tips

How To Make A DIY Rappelling Tower: Top 10 Tips

Due to the current worldwide outbreak that has put entire countries on lockdown, many of us are confined at home, scraping around attics and basements for an adequate replacement for our regular climbing gyms.

While the doors are shut and outside climbing is restricted for many, there has never been a better opportunity to keep yourself occupied with DIY or bucket-list tasks, such as building a home rappelling tower for you and your family! An indoor climbing space in your house is a fantastic way to get all of the advantages of climbing while being safe.

Here's how to make an interior or exterior rappelling tower at home, whether for personal training or to keep the kids out of your house.

Points To Look For Before Constructing A Rappelling Tower

As you are building a rappelling tower at your home, there are various things you need to look for before arriving at any conclusion. Some of these factors and questions are as follows:

#1 What Will Be The Tower's Function?

When building a home rappelling tower, the first thing to think about is what you want to do with it. Are you planning on constructing a rock rappelling tower for your kids? Do you want to strengthen your fingers and improve your overhanging skills? How's your stomping technique?

You can consider all this while creating the ideal personalized home tower design and materials. If you want to build your rock wall, you must first choose how detailed or large a climbing wall area you require. A vertical wall should stand at least 6 to 8 feet tall, while an overhanging wall should be between 8 and 14 feet tall.

#2 Where Should The Construction Take Place?

You'll have to pick where to build your DIY home rappelling tower based on the function it'll serve. Remember to allow enough room for movement, uncontrolled descent, and enough area to justify the effort.

You might want to think about the following choices, depending on the size and style of your property and how you use your space.

In your hallway, set up a traverse; drill holds into supported ceiling beams or turn them into fissures, then build a rappelling tower under your bed that folds up into an adjustable rappelling tower.

#3 Your Home Rappelling Tower's Size

An overhanging tower must be between 8 and 14 feet tall, whereas a vertical tower should be 6 to 8 feet tall. Because the top of anything 14 feet tall installed at an angle will not be 14 feet above the ground, these measurements only pertain to the tower's height when installed vertically.

If you're constructing a tower for your kid crushers, follow the same guidelines, but remember that everything that goes up must fall, so to keep your kids safe, install the tallest grips a little lower. A minimum of 8 feet is best for breadth, but a minimum of 10 feet or more is preferable to allow for more daring and imaginative climbing maneuvers.

These measures are significant; however, the amount of room you have to build your tower will influence the size and style you can choose.

If you want to construct a home tower with a steep overhang, please remember that it will require additional mechanical support and take up much space. A well-thought-out plan will help you save time, materials, and money, so don't allow your enthusiasm to get you.

#4 Designing A Rappelling Tower At Home

Once you've decided on the tower's function and where you want to build it, you'll need to plan out your design carefully to ensure that you acquire the correct quantity of materials and avoid costly mistakes later on. 

Creating some form of visual aid, such as a scaled model to work from, is a terrific approach to start your project.

In a 3D program like Blender, one can do this, built literally out of cardboard, or sketched on paper. This stage assists you in identifying any defects in your design early on, which can save you a lot of money in the long run by preventing problems and blunders.

This stage will also show whether or not it is possible to erect your tower in the specified place. When designing, you should consider the slope of your tower (vertical or overhung), including its intended purpose.

Get some guidance from friends who have done interior design before or those who have worked in architecture or carpentry and can offer professional advice. Depending on the season, a transportable climbing wall could be a terrific way to bring the fun indoors or outside.

#5 Material Selection for the Towers

You have a variety of options for rock rappelling tower material. The two most popular materials are wood and concrete.

Towers Of Wood

You can use plywood or OSB to make a rappelling tower out of wood (oriented strand board). OSB is far more durable than plywood and is usually less priced. It is, nevertheless, 15% denser than plywood and has a higher propensity for retaining moisture, which can lead to deterioration. Thus, plywood is preferred while building a tower outside or in a humid environment.

Aside from plywood and OSB, you can also use a pneumatic board or a composite board. If you're concerned about the material's durability, explain your intended use to your local builder's merchants or DIY store personnel.

Though many individuals prefer to leave their towers naked, especially if they make them of plywood, others choose to paint them. If you're building your tower outside, use weather-resistant paint and treat the wood to make it moisture resistant.

Although painting is not essential, it is a fantastic method to improve the appearance of your tower and ensure that it lasts for a long time. You may also texture the tower to make it look like those seen in a climbing gym.

Tower Of Concrete

Perhaps you already have a concrete tower that begs the adornment of climbing grips. Concrete drop-in anchors, also known as concrete hollow set anchors, allow you to secure your climbing grips to a concrete surface.

Another alternative for securely connecting your grips to the tower is to use corrosion-resistant and robust Tapcon screws.

#6 Tools And Equipment Required

After you've decided on your tower material, gather the tools you'll need to construct and install it.

Basic setup materials you'll need include a level or straight edge, a measuring tape, a table saw or circular saw (if you're making the tower out of hardwood), a drill, and screwdrivers.

Depending on your specific design, you may require additional special tools to ensure the safety and security of your tower. If you're still unsure, visit a professional or talk to the personnel at your local builder's merchants, who are more likely to be familiar with handling construction goods.

#7 What Is The Ideal Height For A Rappelling Tower In Your Home?

You can determine the elevation of your rappelling tower by the amount of space you have and the style of the tower you intend to construct. Go for it if you have the space and want to construct a full-fledged roped rappelling tower in your backyard.

Unfortunately, most individuals can only afford a basic bouldering setup. A bouldering setup often has a vertical distance of 6 to 14 feet between the bottom of the tower and the top. 

At the same time, the precise height from the ground varies significantly on how overhanging the route is.

The most important thing to remember is that no matter how high your tower is, you should always be able to safely descend it, either by landing on a crash pad from a low height or by using traditional rock-climbing equipment to cover your fall.

#8 How Do You Protect Your Outdoor Rappelling Tower From The Elements?

Making your tower modular so you can pull it down or removing vulnerable portions and storing it somewhere dry during downpours is one solution. Consider painting your plywood with a protective finish instead. Wood paint is available in various designs and colors from any builder's merchant or DIY store.

#9 What Should The Angle Of A Home Rappelling Tower Be?

This is mostly dependent on the type of training you wish to do. Consider a more vertical, slab-like structure to improve your footwork. Consider generating an overhang if you want to bulk up your muscles. Make a dynamic tower that can support a variety of angles if you can't decide. Forty-five degrees is a popular angle for professional strength training, but it will rapidly tire you out if you aren't used to it. 

#10 Get Your Rappelling Gears

Even if the setup is at home, you cannot miss out on rappelling gears, especially the belay device, carabiners, and rope. The harness is up to you, depending upon whether the rappelling tower is inside or outside. The climbing rope is usually 60 meters (200 feet) in length. A harness is optional if you are cushioning the surface and the tower isn't too tall. The dynamic rope also has a dry and non-dry rating; it's better to use a static rope when rappelling. Whenever a climbing arborist ascends and lowers on a stationary rope, this is known as SRS. Crossfire and our Tower Line will appeal to arborists that prefer a static climbing line. 7/16′′ Avg. Tower Line climbing rope satisfies ANSI criteria for SRT / SRS. 32-Strand Crossfire For tower technicians and arborists, Climbing Rope is an excellent climbing line. It is a multi-use rappel and rescue rope and can be used in various situations by professional climbers. This rope comprises high-quality fibers for increased abrasion resistance, performance, and safety. It's created in Canada using high-quality fibers that last a long time and show resistance to abrasion, UV, chemicals, and moisture. This rope is ideal for rappelling and tower work with blocks due to its firm construction and straight core.

Building A Rappelling Tower Design Guide

When it's time to start building your tower, start by framing it, or anchoring it to the floor and ceiling.

Begin constructing your frame after you have placed the anchors. Most of the time, this will be a design of hardwood beams connected by screws and t-nuts. The framework is particularly satisfying because you can watch your design take shape rapidly, but accuracy is critical, so don't rush.

When attaching the boards to which your climbing grips will be screwed, make sure there is a small gap between each part. Wood expands and contracts slightly depending on the weather and humidity.

Precautions for Safety

Climbing atop improvised constructions, as well as construction, can be hazardous. If you have any doubts, seek the advice of someone more knowledgeable and experienced than you, especially during the construction process.

No loose screws

If you are on the rappelling tower, it's the skin at risk. You may have felt the anguish of scraping your finger against a jagged piece of rock — picture the pain of scraping your finger against the protruding end of a screw.

 Furthermore, using your tower may expose you to danger if your screws come loose. Using your tower, double-check that all nuts and screws are in place and there are no sharp edges.


Also, if you're using wood to construct your tower, make sure there aren't any splinters that could get trapped in your fingers. Sand splintered portions with coarse sandpaper, then smooth it out with a lighter gradient to make it more pleasant to the touch. The fall zone is another safety factor you should consider when planning and constructing your tower.

If you fall or crash land, you'll want your rappelling tower's environment tower to be safe. Make sure there's enough room for a durable crash cushion or mat and that there are no obstacles in the way of a safe landing. Keep this in mind when creating the tower and when putting your holds.

Step #1: Selecting Climbing Handholds

After your rappelling tower is complete, it's time to select and install the best climbing holds and grips. These climbing grips can be purchased separately, while you can get others with a rappelling tower kit.

Do some study on the best grips for your preferred climbing method. One of the benefits of having your rappelling tower is that you can rebuild it as often as you like, allowing you to purchase multiple grips for various climbing methods. The options are limitless. Larger and more colorful holds (mainly jugs) are ideal for younger climbers. 

They're easier to hold, but they also look great and are easy to see. Experienced climbers, on the other hand, can buy a range of different grips to help them improve their technique. We recommend the Slackers Rock Climbing Hold Set if you're searching for something reasonably priced and of decent quality.

Do not be fooled by the packaging, which suggests it is for youngsters; it includes 20 different hand and footholds, including jugs, crimps, and slopers. It's an excellent place to start if you want to build your rappelling tower at home.

Consider getting the Atomik Climbing Holds if you're seeking something more cost-effective for adults or if you want more technical training. This set includes more pinches and crimps, which are excellent for strengthening muscles, especially when using an overhang.

It might be costly to purchase climbing grips. You might want to buy a few pieces at a time to build up your stockpile. On the other hand, climbing gyms frequently try to sell their used climbing holds at a discount.

Climbing Holds: Screw-on vs. Bolt-on

When it comes to climbing holds, you have two choices: screw-on or bolt-on.

Screw-On holds an Allen-head bolt and at-nut to attach to wood or concrete. Atomik, Slothside, and Kandi are a few brands that provide these types of grips.

Bolt-on climbing holds

The bolt in the latter case goes through the tower and connects to the nut behind it. The nuts stay in place behind the tower, making adjusting or removing the holds easier. Bolt-on rock climbing holds are becoming increasingly popular, with firms like Metolius Holds and Atomik providing them.

On the other hand, Screw-in bolts allow you to install a grip anywhere you choose, not simply where there's a nut. When building your bouldering tower, combining the two is a smart alternative. Keep in mind that screwing grips into concrete is exceedingly tricky. Thus bolt-ons are preferable.

Step #2: Choosing Climbing Routes

It's time to erect your rappelling tower after you've purchased your climbing grips. This can be challenging; after all, you hire specialists to do this, and creating something you enjoy climbing may take some time.

You must set up some climbing hold sets in a particular order, which you can follow or ignore depending on the location you're trying to climb. This does remove the creative element of route planning, which can be beneficial or detrimental depending on your goals.

By employing smaller grips, you may make your tower more tough and technical, improving your climbing methods such as finger strength, grip, and balance. Alternatively, you can improve your explosive force, dynamic talents, and coordination by setting up more significant issues with bigger catches.

If you're building a rappelling tower for kids, keep in mind that your arms and legs are probably longer than theirs. Therefore the holds should be closer.

Step #3: Fix Bolts in Places 

After deciding where to place which bolt, it's time to stop this journey.

By employing smaller grips, you may make your tower more tough and technical, improving your climbing methods such as finger strength, grip, and balance. Alternatively, you can improve your explosive force, dynamic talents, and coordination by setting up bigger issues with bigger catches.

If you're building a rappelling tower for kids, keep in mind that your arms and legs are probably longer than theirs. Therefore the holds should be closer.

How To Make An Interior Rappelling Tower For Children?

Climbing is something that kids love to do, and it has a lot of advantages for them starting at a young age. Some parents have built a rappelling tower within their children's rooms. It not only entertains kids but also encourages them to develop a passion for sports and physical strength at a young age.

There are a few more considerations when creating tailored and enjoyable indoor rock rappelling towers for children or toddlers.

Steps To Make An Interior Rappelling Tower

Here is a detailed step-by-step on making an interior rappelling cum climbing tower. For a detailed explanation, click here.

Step #1: Choose the correct grips

When you first start, get children's climbing grips that are the correct size for their tiny hands and keep them close together to grasp the footholds in their tiny children's climbing shoes. Moreover, keep the height of your tower or paths short and adequate for children, as a child's fall is considerably larger than that of a taller person.

Step #2: Look For Safety Measures

In the bedroom, there is a children's rock rappelling tower.

Though you may have the right intentions when setting up a rappelling tower in your children's bedroom, children have a record of wanting to have fun and devise inventive ways to circumvent your well-planned precautionary measures. 

Keep the top held lower so they don't harm any furniture or themselves even if they start jumping from the top. Manufacturers do not make beds jump on from a tremendous height, no matter how enticing the idea is.

For a child's rock rappelling tower, safety comes first.

Finally, make sure there aren't any pointy or rough edges where they could get wounded. Examine and double-check everything because your children are unlikely to think to do so.

 Step #3: Construct The Tower

Use the additional time you have due to quarantine or restrictions to become more self-sufficient in the climbing gym and to prepare for when you can climb with your buddies again.

Install a hang board and pull-up bars, and set aside an area at home to work antagonist muscles and flexibility to complement your climbing gear. Without ever touching a rappelling tower, there are several techniques to condition your body for climbing. This might range from daily yoga exercises to finger grip strengtheners while watching TV.


If you plan to construct your tower outside, consider all weather conditions and moisture from the ground. If you're building your tower indoors, leave adequate room for falling and carefully design your layout around your limited space. We're excited to hear about and see your creative climbing rock tower design.

Set up a tiny ninja warrior course or perhaps a slacklining zone if you feel daring and have the space. Get creative and have fun with it!

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it Cost to Construct a rock rappelling tower? Depending on how sophisticated or extensive your project is, constructing a rappelling tower might be costly. The price per square foot might range anywhere from $30 to $40. Make a comprehensive strategy and specify the material costs and quantities to manage the costs better.

  1. What kind of plywood is Used to Make the rappelling towers?

Plywood for structural use is the most popular. Sheets of 2,400 mm by 1,200 mm are available for purchase. A wood panel thickness of 17mm is preferable and safe.

Kevin Macey
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