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. I have to state that climbing is dangerous and I cannot take any responsibility for any damage done on holds I help you create. Here goes . . .
- Florist Foam (‘Oasis’ – 60p – Any flower Shop/eBay)
- Silicone Sealant – Comes in tubes to seal bathrooms – Pound-Land £1/tube
- Fine Sand/Silica Sand – I used fine sand
- Acrylic paint (optional) – Don’t have any? Borrow a drop
- Fibreglass Resin – This is the liquid resin & Fixing Agent – Any motorist ‘stuff’ shop/eBay Small tub £4.49.
- Screw/Bolts & Washers
- Drill & Drill Bit
Total - £6.09
1.Make your mould - Mould your oasis to the exact shape you are looking for, you really don’t need to be a sculptor as its for your personal use, just remember don’t make it too thin in areas to keep it strong. Bear in mind there needs to be enough depth for a screw/bolt hole. Now I used a countersunk drill to get a nice sunk bolt hole, you could just use a wider drill the width of your washer and drill about 1/3 into your mould and then dead in the centre of this hole drill just a couple of mm with a bit the width of your bolt.
2. Cast your mould - Here it may get messy! I chose to wear plastic gloves for this part. Stick the flat back of your mould to a piece of card or plastic using pins and hold this down. Warm up your silicone sealant in a big bowl of hot water. Once your ready to go squeeze the gel over the mould being careful to get in every nook and cranny once it all looks covered in on messy blob use a blunt knife to carefully spread it over any missed areas and smooth it over. Make sure your layer of gel is thick enough – at least a couple of centimetres.
Now leave it to toughen over night. Once set simply squeeze out the foam and bin it, clean out your mould with warm water.
3. Prepare your resin & pour - After cleaning out your mould leave it to dry and fill with sand, pour this into a measuring bowl and remove around 40%. To this add your resin (Sand60:Resin40), without the setting agent. Give it a good stir, you don’t want it too wet that it drools all over the place but not too dry so that it breaks up – Ideally like sludge J. If you wish add a couple of drops of your chosen acrylic paint to make it look fancy, place your washer on the ‘nipple’ created by your countersunk drill.
Here comes the tricky part, add the correct amount of fixer as per the instructions on the resin can and mix it right in. Now pour the colourful resin sludge into the rubber mould right to the top and begin to tap the bottom of the mould right away this prevents air bubbles. Once your happy that it is full and bubble free place it on a radiator until its completely solid!
4. Climb! - Pull out your hold – Looks good right!? Your washer should be nicely fixed in the centre, use your drill to punch through the hole and now your ready to bolt/screw it onto the wall.
Hope you have the same success as I did! Let me know how yours went with any suggestions or problems. James :D