Introduction: How to Install a Chin-up Bar on a Dropped Ceiling

Picture of How to Install a Chin-up Bar on a Dropped Ceiling

This tutorial covers the rock-solid installation of a chin-up bar on dropped ceilings. The process that is presented here is one option to do the job - there are alternatives but I found this one to be the most efficient. Credit goes to my father in-law who came with the idea of using pieces of metal tubing.

Stuff that you will need:

  • Chin-up bar
  • hammer drill - do not use an impact drill into concrete - it's a pain in the a**.
  • Piece of scrap wood that is large enough to cover all 4 (or more) holes of the chin-up bar.
    This piece will serve as your (vital) template.
  • Regular cordless drill helps but is not essential.
  • Drywall anchors for the template.
  • Hacksaw or any other tool that is capable of cutting the metal pipes.
  • Bench wise
  • Hammer

Step 1: Prepare the Template & Measure the Distance Between the Drywall and the Concrete Ceiling

Picture of Prepare the Template & Measure the Distance Between the Drywall and the Concrete Ceiling
  • Use a scrap piece of any wood (preferably with right angles). Put your chin-up bar on top of the wooden board and mark all the holes you will have to drill - this is your template.
  • Drill two to three additional holes into your template - this will allow you to attach it to the ceiling
  • Ideally you put one of these holes in the middle of the chinup bar.
  • If you want to have your chin up bar parallel to a wall: measure the desired distance to this wall and drill a hole.
    • Use this hole to measure the distance between the drywall and the concrete ceiling.
  • Use a drywall anchor, a suitable screw and a washer if necessary to install the template.
  • Now you can align the template to the wall with whatever measurement technique you prefer (laser, folding yardstick, etc.).
  • Once happy with your alignment: drill into the drywall using the second auxiliary hole you drilled before
    • You may want to use this hole as well to get another measurement of the depth
  • Now rotate the template so you can access the hole and install another anchor
  • Rotate it back and fix it with a screw

You now have your template set up in parallel to a wall.

Measure the depth of the holes you need for installing the bar. Use the highest value you measured and add 1-2 mm to be on the safe side - this is the size you need to cut down the pieces of metal tube to.

Now its time to get your hammer drill and drill the holes for the chinup bar with the template firmly attached to the ceiling.

Step 2: Cut the Metal Tube to Size

Picture of Cut the Metal Tube to Size

Due to the lack of an angle grinder, I decided to cut the metal tube by hand. Since the pieces should come out with cuts as square as possible, the metal pipes have been spanned in the bench wise. The cut was then made with the hacksaw beeing moved flush to the bench wise. A cutting scrap of a leather piece was used to span the metal pipe to prevent slipping.

Step 3:

Picture of
  • Remove the template and close all auxiliary holes with cement.
  • Widen the holes you need for the chinup bar (e.g. with a conical drill) and fit in the pieces of metal pipe.
    These pieces will eventually absorb the axial force of the anchors.
  • Install the chinup bar with suitable heavy duty fixing. There are a lot of options out there to realise this, I decided to use the "Control metric length fixing" product from TOX since it has some really nice features:

I hope this tutorial is of a certain use to some people - it took me some time to figure out a suitable way to attach the chinup bar to the drywall ceiling without taking the risk of damaging the ceiling while still maintining the possibility to remove the bar.

Please excuse any language related comprehensibility issues - I am not a native english speeker but I did try my best - any corrections and/or improvements are welcome.

Comments

tomatoskins (author)2017-07-12

Very nice technique! How much weight do you think it can hold?

FamAu (author)tomatoskins2017-07-13

Hi Troy,

since the force on the pieces of tubing are acting in axial direction, and the heavy duty anchor is used withing its specs: I assume that you can put static and dynamic loads on the chin-up bar as specified by the manufactures of the chin-up bar and of the anchors. The anchors are specified to a (static) load of 300 kg for a single anchor - dynamic load is not specified in the document i linked above (or I just missed it).

Best,

David

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