How to make a pull-up bar & stand

Written by kirk maltbee
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How to make a pull-up bar & stand
(Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Pull-ups are considered by many fitness coaches and enthusiasts to be a true measure of a person's upper-body strength. Several commercially made pull-up bars for home use are available at retail stores, but people with a more do-it-yourself mindset can make their own free-standing pull-up bars with common household materials. Making your own set of pull-up bars and a stand, to allow people of varying heights to easily access the overhead bar, can be a rewarding home project.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 2 threaded 8-foot-long metal pipes
  • 1 threaded 4-foot-long metal pipe
  • 2 threaded metal piping elbow connectors
  • 2 plastic 5-gallon buckets
  • 2 bags of quick dry cement
  • 4 wooden 4-by-4s, each 2 feet long
  • 4 wooden 2-by-4s, each 3 1/2 feet long
  • 1 plywood square, 3 feet by 3 feet and 1/2 inch thick
  • 1 wooden 4-by-4, 2 feet 11 1/2 inches in length
  • Electric drill and Phillips screwdriver bit
  • Box of 3-inch wood screws

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    The Pull-Up Bar

  1. 1

    Lay each 8-foot metal pipe flat on the ground, parallel to one another, and screw a elbow connector to the top ends of the pipes. Screw each connector on until firm and make sure the openings of each elbow are facing inward toward one another.

  2. 2

    Screw the threaded 4-foot-long metal pipe ends into the open ends of the elbow connectors on the parallel 8-foot pipes, connecting them and completing the actual pull-up bar. Stand the metal piping up vertically and place the bottom end of each pipe in a plastic bucket.

  3. 3

    Mix the quick-dry concrete, following the manufacturer's directions on the package. Fill the buckets to the top with cement -- using about a bag's worth of cement in each -- while holding the pipes upright and in place (someone can hold the piping for you). Allow enough time to dry until the bars stand vertically on their own without support -- generally about 15 minutes.

    The Stand

  1. 1

    Lay two of 2-foot-long 4-by-4s flat on the ground, parallel to one another and spaced about 3 feet apart. Lay one of the 2-by-4 lengths over them. Position the 2-by-4 about midway down the length of the 4-by-4s and screw it into place, creating an H-shaped piece to form the base for the pull-up stand.

  2. 2

    Repeat the above process to form another "H" shape. Stand the two H-shapes opposite each other and screw the other 2-by-4s to the sides of the 4-by-4s to create a square base. Lay the plywood square over the top of the base and screw it into place.

  3. 3

    Slide the remaining 4-by-4 piece underneath the plywood and position it on an edge near the centre of the square. Provide additional support by screwing into the centre of the plywood to attach the wooden piece to the underside of the base.

Tips and warnings

  • The concrete used for the base of the pull-up bar may take a few hours to dry completely because it is compacted and does not have full access to air.

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