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How to make a fingerboard or hangboard for climbing training

my very own fingerboard

Here is my method for making a fingerboard which can be incorporated into your climbing training routine, you will need; Wood, at least 60cm x 25cm x 5cm. A drill. A router with varying depth settings. A sander or sandpaper for finishing.

  • Step 1 – Select your wood – It is essential that you choose good quality wood for your board, ideally with few knots, splits or warping and not too soft. I personally use Irish White Pine, this is relatively cheap but is strong and generally imperfection free.
  • Step 2 – Sketch your holds onto the wood – In my opinion these should include a wide pull up section and crimps for four, three and two finger pull-ups at varying depths. If you’re feeling creative you may also wish to leave a margin at the top for a sloper. Make sure your holds are at least twice as wide as your fingers or it will be difficult to campus the board.
  • Step 3 –Drill pilot holes – These need to be drilled in each slot for the router to sink into. You also need to drill a countersunk hole in each corner right the way through the board; this is where your bolts will go fixing it to the wall.
  • Step 4 – Router your holds – Your holds need to be routered to your chosen depth, this is done by selecting the correct setting on the machinery. This part can be a little trick as if you guide the router by hand it is virtually impossible to get a straight line, I have instead made a guide for the drill to follow which I push the board through.
  • Step 5 – Finishing – This involves sanding every edge preventing splintering and rough edges, if you have decided to have a sloper along the top this needs to be sanded at your desired gradient using a disk sander. 

I try to use my fingerboard every day as a part of my training routine; I really enjoy the making of fingerboards and for more information check them out on Ebay here. I also have a Hub on 'How to make climbing holds and grips'. If you would like any help or advice with the making of your board or if you have any suggestions please let me know with a comment - @climberjames

How to make climbing holds and grips . . . Here is my step-by-step guide of how I made my very own climbing holds, they really aren’t that difficult to make, and depending on what you have lying around it can be done for less than you probably think! Click here to learn how
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