Hanging a Punching Bag in your Garage or Basement

For anyone thinking of hanging a punching bag from rafters or I-beams, you’re in the right place. Punching bags come in a variety of sizes and weights, and where and how you can hang your bag, depends largely on the weight. In many cases, weight will increase with size, so they’re both proportional. Some types come with stands and other hardware to make things easy to set up.

But often, they’ll come with just the bare bones, leaving the user to ensure it is installed safely and in the most usable way possible. As I mentioned above,5-foot punching bag the weight of the punching bag has a lot to do with where you can hang it from. For example, a 5 foot bag may easily weigh 70 to 100 pounds, while the smaller ones might be proportionally lighter.

It’s not difficult to imagine the consequences of hanging a 70 pound object from say, a 2 by 4 spanning 2 or 3 meters. Finding a sufficiently thick beam that can easily carry the weight of the bag plus any additional movement without deflecting is crucial to ensuring proper installation. Now the next thing to do is to look at the connection. This will often be a group of chains or thick rope.

Now this is not as easy as simply wrapping the chains over and around an I-beam or thick wooden rafter and locking it down. Why? Because in the case of a chain, the I-beam will wear down on the corners and the part of the chain that contacts these corners will itself wear and eventually break. In any case, you don’t want any kind of abrasive action taking place on your I-beams.

I-beams are usually coated with zinc or other corrosion protection, and having something heavy like a punching bag sliding around and scraping the protection off, isn’t a double nuts and lock washersgood idea. In the case of thick rope, the same thing. With every punch or kick, the swinging bag will cause movement at the connection, slowly “sanding” its way to failure.

So the solution is to create a connection that does not allow movement, very little movement, or one where the two contacting materials have a low friction coefficient. Ideally, you don’t want to drill holes in your rafters as this will weaken them. However, depending on the load they are supporting, it may be feasible. I recently hung a 5-foot punching bag at our place here and believe the way I did it could be replicated effectively in many situations.

How I Hung a 5-foot Punching Bag from a Steel I-beam

As I mentioned above I didn’t want to have to drill into the steel in any way, which weakens it. So I decided to exploit the unique geometry of the I-beam and “hang” L brackets and threaded bolt shankit from the 2 platforms that make up the lower flange of the I-beam. As you can see from the photos, I use 2 “L” brackets into which I drill holes for a threaded bolt shank to fit through.

I then lock the bolt into position with double nuts and split washers. The particular bolt shank I used was 5/16th inches or about 8mm – plenty for the given load considering the spanned distance. From here I simply measure the desired height from the ground, and add any necessary additional chain. The final step is hooking the whole thing onto the bolt shank and it’s ready to receive some serious punishment!


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