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Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT?
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GillilandIII


Jan 17, 2011, 3:54 PM
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Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT?
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Hi All - Long time reader; first time poster.

Has anyone successfully constructed a woodie in their apartment?

I am in a multi-family apartment building in NYC, built in 1911, with high ceilings and long hallway free of obstructions. It is a blessing to have this in a city, and if any of you are from NYC, you know there are only about 3-4 gyms to pull plastic on. It takes me 75' to make it to the closest one.

Is there a way to make woodie that is:

1) Safe and non-damaging/minimally damaging to the walls when I move out?

2) Possibly modular so I can take it with me to my next apartment?

I was thinking of something free standing, weighted on bottom, with simple anchors into the ceiling to keep it from swaying too much. It would be a simple vertical wall about 8-12' long and 9.5' tall -- not overhung -- since I can't drill into every single stud and beam and make it safe.

The wall the woodie would be against is built solidly, with drywall over standard framing. I imagined carpeting the back face every 8'-10" with a spacers, both to allow room for the bolts to come through and to disperse the load across the drywall. If it is built properly, most of the force should be directed into the floor. (Floors are hardwood, but beneath them are 12" of concrete -- no need to worry about weight or jumping down onto a mat. I'm not an architect but I was told the building was totally over engineered in this respect.)

Essentially, I'm looking for any advice on making a free standing woodie for someone who lives in a city. Links, stories, and pictures are welcomed.

Thanks to all.

TL;DR: I need to build a woodie in my NYC apartment. I have the space, but need some advice on how to do it successfully.


MS1


Jan 17, 2011, 4:11 PM
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Re: [GillilandIII] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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GillilandIII wrote:
Hi All - Long time reader; first time poster.

Has anyone successfully constructed a woodie in their apartment?

I am in a multi-family apartment building in NYC, built in 1911, with high ceilings and long hallway free of obstructions. It is a blessing to have this in a city, and if any of you are from NYC, you know there are only about 3-4 gyms to pull plastic on. It takes me 75' to make it to the closest one.

Is there a way to make woodie that is:

1) Safe and non-damaging/minimally damaging to the walls when I move out?

2) Possibly modular so I can take it with me to my next apartment?

I was thinking of something free standing, weighted on bottom, with simple anchors into the ceiling to keep it from swaying too much. It would be a simple vertical wall about 8-12' long and 9.5' tall -- not overhung -- since I can't drill into every single stud and beam and make it safe.

The wall the woodie would be against is built solidly, with drywall over standard framing. I imagined carpeting the back face every 8'-10" with a spacers, both to allow room for the bolts to come through and to disperse the load across the drywall. If it is built properly, most of the force should be directed into the floor. (Floors are hardwood, but beneath them are 12" of concrete -- no need to worry about weight or jumping down onto a mat. I'm not an architect but I was told the building was totally over engineered in this respect.)

Essentially, I'm looking for any advice on making a free standing woodie for someone who lives in a city. Links, stories, and pictures are welcomed.

Thanks to all.

TL;DR: I need to build a woodie in my NYC apartment. I have the space, but need some advice on how to do it successfully.

I think a pure vert. woodie of those dimensions would get so boring, so quickly, that it would be a waste of effort. But I bet you can build one that is moderately overhanging without driling into any walls, basically by building a larger version of this.

Or, if you've got the scratch, you could make yourself much happier and just get one of these.


GillilandIII


Jan 17, 2011, 4:28 PM
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Re: [MS1] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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Thanks; Sadly, not enough scratch nor space for a proper Treadwall. I've seen them before, but they aren't right for this project.

The boulder board also takes up too much depth. This is part of a long hallway, so I have vertical height and width (could go to 16' wide), but not much for depth.

I'll play around with a moderately overhung idea -- the braces on the sides become a problem, however with obstructing the walkway in the hallway itself. That is the reason for considering it vertical.

Much obliged for the links. Additional suggestions welcomed from all.


edge


Jan 17, 2011, 4:39 PM
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Re: [GillilandIII] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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How about a slightly overhung wall, as tall as the hallway. At the top, stabilize it with horizontal joists that meet a 2" x 10" on the opposite wall to distribute the load.

The steep wall rests on the floor, against one wall. The 2" x 10" rests on the opposite wall, and can be held in place with 1-2 long screws per stud; this would be your only wall damage, and easy to repair.

By going slightly over vertical you create space behind the wall for bolts to protrude. You could get by with 5/8" ply (3/4" would be better) over 2" x 4"s. Maybe even put a panel on the underside of the horizontals, but I doubt you could get creative enough setting-wise to make it worthwhile.


ceebo


Jan 17, 2011, 4:56 PM
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Re: [GillilandIII] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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If you know a good metal worker he can weld you 3 pieces of frame work. Imagine a upside down number 7 (not correct lengths but you know ^^). Line 3 of them up, and then the wood would just bolt in across their underside giving you an overhang. Their would however require 3 vertical support beams but they would only be around a foot long to support the corners where the welds are. By the time you put your mats down (which would conveniently cover the 3 floor beams) you would take up some of that lost frame work anyway. You would however be restricted to a certain degree of overhang.. i cant say for sure what, but with the above.. i doubt it would support anything past 15 degree at 12 foot height. Would also depend on the metal used.

Just an idea anyway. Would cost more, and you would have to get the angles spot on.. but at least it would be free standing and relatively collapsible. I was almost forced into doing this myself in the back garden.. but she finally cracked, and the loft is mine ;].


gmggg


Jan 18, 2011, 7:00 AM
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Re: [edge] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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edge wrote:
How about a slightly overhung wall, as tall as the hallway. At the top, stabilize it with horizontal joists that meet a 2" x 10" on the opposite wall to distribute the load.

The steep wall rests on the floor, against one wall. The 2" x 10" rests on the opposite wall, and can be held in place with 1-2 long screws per stud; this would be your only wall damage, and easy to repair.

By going slightly over vertical you create space behind the wall for bolts to protrude. You could get by with 5/8" ply (3/4" would be better) over 2" x 4"s. Maybe even put a panel on the underside of the horizontals, but I doubt you could get creative enough setting-wise to make it worthwhile.

I like this option a lot for a hallway (Although I am quite partial to the Boulderboard...).

A ledger on the opposite side would provide plenty of support and the relatively shorter frame members (rather than going to the floor) would be much more sturdy. The only suggestion I might make is that instead of running the joists from the wall to the ledger horizontally (parallel to the ceiling) I would attach them at a 90 degree angle to the wall and move the ledger slightly lower on the opposite wall. That would put your frame into pure compression which is a slightly stronger option; maybe not necessary, might not give you the clearance you need to walk through the hall, but I think it would "feel" more solid.

I also would second the slight overhang. It's better for dealing with bolts and it will be more interesting to climb. It also gives you a nice impromptu storage area. You can get some hooks and/or bolt hangers and attach them to the rear of the wall to make a nice gear rack.


edge


Jan 18, 2011, 12:51 PM
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Re: [gmggg] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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gmggg wrote:
The only suggestion I might make is that instead of running the joists from the wall to the ledger horizontally (parallel to the ceiling) I would attach them at a 90 degree angle to the wall and move the ledger slightly lower on the opposite wall. That would put your frame into pure compression which is a slightly stronger option; maybe not necessary, might not give you the clearance you need to walk through the hall, but I think it would "feel" more solid.

I don't think the added stability would be noticeable, and definately not worth the trade off in terms of headroom. This is, after all, a hallway that I assume gets regular use.

Assuming the floor and opposite wall are solid, then the climbing wall with a horizontal joists would basically be triangulated. Plus, by keeping the joists horizontal it places the ledger board at the top of the wall, closest to supporting framing in the ceiling of the hall.

Hell, for that matter, place the ledger board flat against the ceiling and run your studs from the floor direct to that.


gmggg


Jan 18, 2011, 11:24 PM
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Re: [edge] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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edge wrote:
gmggg wrote:
The only suggestion I might make is that instead of running the joists from the wall to the ledger horizontally (parallel to the ceiling) I would attach them at a 90 degree angle to the wall and move the ledger slightly lower on the opposite wall. That would put your frame into pure compression which is a slightly stronger option; maybe not necessary, might not give you the clearance you need to walk through the hall, but I think it would "feel" more solid.

I don't think the added stability would be noticeable, and definately not worth the trade off in terms of headroom. This is, after all, a hallway that I assume gets regular use.

Assuming the floor and opposite wall are solid, then the climbing wall with a horizontal joists would basically be triangulated. Plus, by keeping the joists horizontal it places the ledger board at the top of the wall, closest to supporting framing in the ceiling of the hall.

Hell, for that matter, place the ledger board flat against the ceiling and run your studs from the floor direct to that.

Ah, the elusive better simpler solution.


jape


Jan 19, 2011, 5:39 AM
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Re: [GillilandIII] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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What ever you do, don't make it vert, even 5 deg overhanging will be better for your climbing. I've had many woodies in apartments/studios, almost all of them were framed "to fit" the area without drilling holes into walls/roofs, etc. Just takes some rough carpentry, vision, light math and some thinking about how it will function.

If you make it a bit steeper than vert, you can often put in shelves behind to store your gear and other stuff...


If you take a pic of the area maybe you'll get some more fodder to think about!!


(This post was edited by jape on Jan 19, 2011, 5:41 AM)


cacalderon


Jan 20, 2011, 7:02 PM
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Re: [GillilandIII] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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agree with most posting.. a vertical board will get boring and you will outgrow the board very quickly.

suggest overhanging board and start with big holds and continue reducing hold size for improvement.

the options above would work. another idea would be to have a metal worker build you a frame rectangular box where you can attach your boards. If the box is tall and wide enough you could add two board to have a change in slope to recreate a small incline or roof...etc.


danabart


Jan 23, 2011, 8:40 AM
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Re: [GillilandIII] Woodie Construction -- in an APARTMENT? [In reply to]
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I've had a home wall for 10 years, and I live in a pretty small space; I have less thaan you do, it seems. It is simple to build a freestanding, adjustable structure. PM me for more info. You are going to be limited by ceiling height, but Malcolm Smith - he did the second ascent of Hubble, 5.14C - did most of his training on a tiny wall in his bedroom. He lives in Scotland, the weather is terrible for much of the year and there may not have been a gym available to him. If you want to, you can make a small wall work very well.


(This post was edited by danabart on Jan 23, 2011, 8:41 AM)


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