How to Make a Canoe Rack for a Truck

How to Make a Canoe Rack for a Truck
Transporting a canoe can be one of the biggest drawbacks to owning one. Fortunately, if you have a truck, it is relatively easy to use a few simple materials to create your own canoe rack. With an afternoon and a plan, you can build a convenient rack that will allow you to carry your canoe with you wherever you go.


Difficulty: Easy

Build the Rack

Things You’ll Need:
  • Six 6-foot 1x2s
  • Six 6-foot 2x2s
  • Four-inch wood screws
  • Three-inch wood screws
  • Screwdriver
  • Saw
  • Tape measure
  • Small metal cleats
  • Wood stain
Step 1
Cut two 2x2s to the approximate width of your truck. This is the base of your rack.
Step 2
Measure your canoe. Cut six lengths of 2x2: two to the width of the canoe, plus two inches, and four to the height of the canoe, plus 3.5 inches.
Step 3
Lay the canoe across the two base 2x2s, positioning it in the center of each.
Step 4
Using the four-inch wood screws, screw a vertical strut to each side of the canoe on the back of each of the rack bases.
Step 5
Finish the frames around the canoe by placing the final two 2x2s across the top of the canoe and screw them into place on the front of the vertical supports.

Complete the Rack

Step 1
Measure the distance from the roof of the truck to the top of the sides of the bed.
Step 2
Cut eight vertical bed struts. Cut four of them to a height of five inches longer than the truck roof's height. Cut four more to the height you measured plus three inches.
Step 3
Screw one longer vertical strut to one shorter one, using the three inch screws. Keep one end flush.
Step 4
Place the two-inch extension of each vertical strut into the canopy holes on the truck.
Step 5
Connect the rack bases to the back sides of the vertical supports with four-inch screws.

Finishing Touches

Step 1
Use four more 2x2s to connect the two racks together. You will need to custom-measure this for the gap on your particular truck. Screw two 2x2s across the top corners of the rack, across the joint of the vertical strut and the rack base. Screw the other two 2x2s into the vertical struts as they enter the canopy holes.
Step 2
On each rack base, attach a small cleat or metal loop to attach a knot or carabiner to secure the painter lines at each end of your canoe.
Step 3
Stain the entire rack so that it is able to resist moisture.

Article Written By Beau Prichard

Beau Prichard has been a freelance writer and editor since 1999. He specializes in fiction, travel and writing coaching. He has traveled in the United Kingdom, Europe, Mexico and Australia. Prichard grew up in New Zealand and holds a Bachelor of Arts in writing from George Fox University.

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