CooVar SureGrip

CooVar SureGrip

cantina coovar
One staple of DIY build climbing walls is CooVar Paints product, SureGrip.  Originally developed for Hull’s marine industry it was soon ‘borrowed’ by DIY self build projects.  The first to do so was probably Undercover Rock in Bristol in 1992.  Reading a small press feature in the Hull Daily Mail, the local paper of both Coo-Var paints and Rockcity (us) we got in touch and used it at Rockcity Climbing Centre in Hull in 1994.  We used this textured floor paint for the next 15+ years.  We last used it in our bouldering room, La Cantina in 2010.

Over the last 20 years it has been used extensively all over the UK and has probably been the No. 1 textured paint used on indoor climbing walls across the country.

suregrip_1l_blue_smThe benefits of SureGrip are that its fairly easy to apply.  Its an oil based, single pack paint that air drys.  Applied with a paint brush and roller and its thick enough to cut in different colours whilst smooth enough to get a reasonably neat edge.

There are a good range of basic colours (custom colours can be added at extra cost).

There are some drawbacks using Sure Grip compared to more modern systems and techniques for texturing climbing wall surfaces, (see Rockcity Pro Wall textured system).

Apply it thickly and it takes a long time to go completely hard.  We applied multiple layers with extra sand into La Cantina and it took 2-3 months to fully cure.  Normally two thin coats is fine but we like to play around with products at Rockcity HQ.

Also it lasts a long time but does wear a bit, especially on corners, as its only a paint and not a resin.  In addition it ‘ghosts’ a bit where shoes rub around the holds, nothing too bad and a lot better than just smooth painted walls but it does mark a bit as the paint isn’t repellent to climbing shoe  rubber.


All things considered its probably just us wall geeks that are obsessed by the differences int he paints and resins we use.  CooVar SureGrip is a great product that wont break the bank and can be used by anyone who can drive a paintbrush and roller.

Along with our more technical resin products, Rockcity Pro Wall and Rockcity Art Wall Shield we also sell CooVar SureGrip too.  We can direct ship straight to your climbing wall project.

Drop us an email –”

Related Blogs

dannolast - Rockcity Climbing Holds
Posted by Rockcity | March 22, 2019
New Year, New Material. Introducing Dannolast
We have waited 25 years for this new material Dannolast, to finally become a reality.  In fact it is the changes in technology that keeps us excited to be part...
Illusion Izohypse Fried Egg
Posted by mark | June 12, 2018
TOP 5 Mad Climbing Volumes
In the crazy world of indoor climbing walls things are getting whackier. The creation and setting of bouldering problems are art-forms within their own right. But bouldering enthusiast are finding...
Posted by Rockcity | January 31, 2018
Hull Banksy
So immediately the worst of Hull's graffiti scene decided to enhance it with probably the finest examples of why people consider graffiti to be a crime. A lot of excitement...