5 ways on how to make tree climbing spikes on your own

How to make tree climbing spikes is a simple task to do once you have the right resources. Tree climbing spikes are used for holding on to trees when climbing trees to erect a tree stand. Though different people call them by different names, they are still called tree climbing spikes or spurs.

I have previously written an article on lone wolf climbing sticks but, in this article, I will share with you the process of making tree climbing gear at home by yourself.

Climbing even the lowest branch of a tree is not as easy as it might look at first sight. It requires training, skills, and know-how of the special equipment that could help you get up high enough to have a better view if you love to hunt from the tree.

How to make your first climbing spurs

how to make tree climbing spikes

1. Getting the tools needed for making climbing spikes

There is nothing you can do without the required tools for making climbing spikes. If you are doing this on your own, you might have access to some advanced tools such as metal bending tools, welding machines, drill machines, screws, leather materials, shin guides, pliers, and many more.

Apart from the materials you need for the process, you need to get the gaffs, either the long or short, the long metal material, steel split ring, and upper shin strap.

2. Cut out the metal into a tiny long shape

You should get your metal and do ensure it is not too heavy. Measure your feet to the upper part of your shin. Then you should get hold of the machine to cut out the metal in a square shape. It doesn’t have to be too wide so that it doesn’t become uncomfortable on the leg.

Once you have cut out the metal using PORTER-CABLE Chop Saw, you should bend the lower part so that it can accommodate your feet with you having the size of your hunting boot in mind. Use the right bending tool to do that. The Almas Tool Manual Mounting Mini Universal Bending Bender will do the work effectively for you without much stress.

You should measure the area you want to bend before doing it because it can be quite hard to reverse the process once you have done it.

3. Installing the gaffs on the metal

The next step for you is to install the gaffs on the metal. You need to get a strong metal rod which you have to cut into a smaller piece. Then you should sharpen the rod and ensure the tip is sharp and pointed so that it can easily get into the tree for a solid grip.

Once you have done that, you should go on with welding the gaff to the back of the metal at the side facing the tree. You can use YESWELDER MIG-250 PRO Aluminum MIG Welder, but some others can work if they can do the task.

Join the gaff to the metal with the welder and ensure it stays firmly. It has to be done in a way that you are sure it will not come off once you apply pressure when trying to pin it into any tree while climbing. Once you are done with that, you can move on to the next stage.

4. Installing the shin guide on the metal

The next thing is that you need to install the shin guide on the metal. You can do that by drilling a hole through the metal for you to fasten the shin guide to it. You can get any of the quality drilling machines out there in the market to use.

You should fasten the shin guide to the metal with a solid robe. Once you’ve done that, you should also ensure you have a strap around it that you can use to wrap around your leg once you have the spike on the leg.

You need the strap or robe else; it will become difficult for you to have the spike well positioned on your leg without falling off easily.

5. Installing the steel split ring

The purpose of the steel split ring is to help secure your angle in place. However, you can make use of different things or method to solve this issue. You can make an elastic strap that will keep your feet firm on the part you have to place your feet.

Once you have your feet on the base, you activate the strap, and it will ensure your feet don’t tilt around on the base so that you can have steady and solid performance.

Things to note: That is all that you need to know about making climbing spurs on your own. Also, you should always try it out on low-height trees before you move on to taller ones. Climbing thicker trees with solid bark will help a lot as you can easily pin the gaff into the tree. Lastly, you should try and work out with long gaff if it is your first time.

Are tree climbing spikes legal?

Climbing trees with spikes is nowhere illegal. The only setback is when you hunt in an area where tree damages are not allowed. You will cause little or heavy damages to the tree you are climbing due to the tip of the gaff.

So, in areas where tree damages are not allowed, you could end up being charged with illegal activity. Aside from that, climbing trees with spikes for hunting is never an illegal thing to do.

Are tree spikes bad for trees?

If you consider the health or the condition of the tree after you climb with a spike, you will never get on the tree. The truth is that spikes never leave the tree the same way they are.  There is no way you will climb the tree without leaving a mark or peeling some part of the bark.

So, on that note, we can say that tree spikes are bad for trees. However, you can try other means if you care for the tree’s health, such as using a lone wolf climbing stick or other alternatives.

How do you climb a tree with spikes?

To climb a tree with spikes, you need to be sure of the tree you want to climb. Most people make a mistake trusting their spikes and ignore the tree they want to climb. Sometimes, you must check out the tree and ensure it is safe to climb.

Once the tree is safe to climb, you should put on your spikes on your leg and select your starting point after having the climbing harness around the tree. You sure need a climbing tree saddle to climb a tree using spikes.

So, you take a step at a time, and you should only move on once you are sure you have a solid grip on afoot to the tree before you move ahead.

How do you spike a tree?

You spike a tree using the right climbing saddle and the right spike. Pin the gaff into the tree one after another, and you get to progress by moving one leg after another.

How do you sharpen tree spikes?

Well, you do not have to sharpen your tree spikes except the gaff. You need the gaff to be as sharp as you want it to be. It is the point that will pierce into the tree, and it has to be sharp to do that. So, you can always make use of metal sharpening tools to do the task.

How do I make my climbing spurs more comfortable?

The only way to make the climbing spur comfortable is to have the right shoe size and solid fastening materials. Once you can get a perfect snug fit on your leg, you sure will become comfortable climbing the tree with the spur.


If you are curious about making tree climbing spikes, we have got you covered on this page. There are different resources out there that claim to teach how it is done. However, we have the right information here on how we got our done without hassles. If you can follow the instruction above, the sky is the starting point for you.