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Old 11-20-2013, 08:29 PM   #1
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


Hi! I'm new here and I have a question about hanging a punching bag in my basement.

I bought a mount that is made for hanging heavy bags and I drilled directly into the side of one of the solid wooden beams in my basement so that it sticks out perpendicular to the beam.

My question is, is this safe for the beam? It seems sturdy and I punched it for a little while and it seems very sturdy so far.
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Old 11-21-2013, 02:21 AM   #2
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


More info needed because that depends on;

1. The size of the beam (depth and thickness);
2. The clear unsupported span of the beam;
3. The load the beam is already carrying from above (just floor, or wall + floor etc);
4. The position along the beam where you have put the fixing (eg towards the end is not as bad as near mid-span.

That would be an engineer's take on it, but if it seems firm and there is not too much bend on the beam, you could well be OK.
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Old 11-21-2013, 06:48 AM   #3
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


I usually recommend a simple test. Put a level (or any true straight edge) under the beam. Do this when there is no load, and again when there is a load. If there is no perceivable difference, then you're probably fine. If there is, then it becomes a judgment call based on how much deflection you're seeing. Check again down the road. The beauty of most structural materials is that they don't conceal stress. I don't think there's ever been an undamaged joist/rafter/beam that was perfectly straight, then suddenly failed. The more you push them, the more they show it.
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Old 11-21-2013, 07:39 AM   #4
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


probably the worst thing would be if the beam swayed with the bag. the top of the beam is locked in by the sub floor but the bottom could be open with no support. consider adding support in the floor system around the bag to keep the beam from tipping/swaying back and forth from the force of the swinging bag
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Old 11-21-2013, 09:30 AM   #5
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


If you've got clear access to both sides of the joist I'd be inclined to add blocking. This to help spread the stress and help keep that joist from getting twisted from the load put on the side of it. Both behind the mount AND in front of it. As close as you can get to the mount, of course.
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Old 11-23-2013, 12:24 PM   #6
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


So, here is what I came up with:
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Last edited by Jamesdwilley; 11-23-2013 at 12:35 PM.
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Old 11-23-2013, 01:56 PM   #7
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


My comment about blocking was to have some side-to-side between the joists. While padding it out is certainly a fine idea, it doesn't do much to discourage lateral twisting motion of the joist itself. I'd nail up some cross-members blocking it left-right.

And, like anything else, keep an eye on the connections to make sure they don't shift over time.

Now, get hittin' that bag!
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Old 11-23-2013, 03:07 PM   #8
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


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Originally Posted by Jamesdwilley View Post
So, here is what I came up with:
Hm. So, a couple of things here. You said beam. That's a joist. Big difference in design loads. That said, we are only talking about a 70lb bag. Assuming the joists aren't overspanned and/or overloaded otherwise, you should be ok. As per before, you can do a simple test to get a feel for how much deflection the bag is causing. Realize that the closer you bring the bag to a joist end, the better the joist will handle the load. So, if you're seeing a lot of deflection, consider relocating the bag.

I see there's bridging nearby. That's good.

I do wonder, though, what the point was of sistering the joist with such short pieces (double-sistering, no less). If anything, it results in a weaker support system. Why? Well...what's holding up the bag now? Those two lag screws? Nope. It's whatever fasteners you used to sister the two pieces of wood to the joist. Decking screws? Bad. Long drywall screws? Very bad. Common nails. OK, if you used a lot of them. But what's the point? At best, it's as strong (but no stronger) than if you had just screwed into the joist. Those pieces don't look long enough to stiffen the joist up much. Then again, maybe it's an optical illusion. If they were long (or are long), and you used a good number of nails, then it will help stiffen the joist. Still, no reason to screw the bag bracket to them, and you'll be better of undoing that and just screwing into the joist. Mind you this is all mostly academic. What's the worst case scenario?...bag comes crashing down onto the basement floor...a whole foot drop? Unless your cat has bad timing and is out of lives, I think it would be a harmless fail.
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Old 11-23-2013, 03:41 PM   #9
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


As per Cortell, you made more work for yourself and (potentially) might have ended up with a slightly weaker support.
But what's done is done; just satisfy yourself that you have enough and sufficient fixings. If it was going to drop, it would probably give some warning beforehand.
Oh, and just hit that bag gently!
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:26 AM   #10
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


with that type of application the easiest would be to take down the bag and clamp and add one piece of 4x8 3/4" plywood centered where the bag goes and then hang the back back up to the plywood. use some structural screws to put the ply up with...
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:38 AM   #11
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


The logic behind the way I did it was not to support the joist that it was mounted to, but simply to spread the load out a little bit. If I'd screwed the mount directly into the joist, the load would've been concentrated within a 5 inch area on 2 screws. Now it's spread over a 2 foot width among 16 screws.

Now if it fails, the bag will come crashing down and the damage should be limited to the blocking (and maybe my foot).

That being said, it seems quite sturdy.
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Old 11-25-2013, 07:27 AM   #12
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


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Originally Posted by Jamesdwilley View Post
The logic behind the way I did it was not to support the joist that it was mounted to, but simply to spread the load out a little bit. If I'd screwed the mount directly into the joist, the load would've been concentrated within a 5 inch area on 2 screws. Now it's spread over a 2 foot width among 16 screws.

Now if it fails, the bag will come crashing down and the damage should be limited to the blocking (and maybe my foot).

That being said, it seems quite sturdy.
what will happen is the back and forth pressure applied to that joist overtime will loosen the nail to sub floor connection and cause possible squeaking in the floor system above. your two blocks did not do much to keep the joist from moving side to side. even if you put up a 2x4 screwed across the joists next to where the bag is hanging and make sure to screw three joists either direction it would help a lot to keep the joist from free swinging/hanging. the idea is to tie the bottoms of the joists together just as it is at the top where the subfloor is
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Old 11-25-2013, 09:22 AM   #13
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Hanging a 70 Pound Punching Bag


If you wanted to spread the load out, you should have spanned a few of the joists, no? That's how I"ve done it in the past.
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