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Nowadays, kayak storage and loading carts are essential! The reason? Kayaks are heavy, and lifting them without a storage and loading cart is certainly no fun. But it’s easy to eliminate the pain of loading and unloading a kayak onto a truck bed with this easy to make kayak storage and loading cart. I’ll show you how to make it in just a few minutes!

As we at Kayak Angler have seen, there may be no more popular home project for today’s heavy fishing kayaks. — KayakAnglerMag.com

Requirements

When scouring YouTube for how to make a cart, I had three requirements in mind. First, I needed the cart to disassemble easily. After all, I have a two car garage and at times I want to park both cars inside. In order to do that I’d have to hang my kayak on my storage rack and disassemble the cart. This cart disassembles in 2 seconds or less! Next, I needed the cart to do more than just store my kayak in the garage, I needed it to go the extra mile and assist me in loading my Hobie Outback into the bed of my truck. Wait till you see how this one pivots to do that. And finally, when I unloaded my kayak I wanted to be able to hose it down and have the cart not be damaged by the water. This design even helps to drain the water!

Design Credit

The overall design of this cart came from a former YouTuber, Lef Yak Fishing. He’s since left YouTube and encouraged me to make a video about the cart instead. Thanks Lef!

Parts

Here’s what you’ll need as parts.

Tools

  • Drill
  • Carpenters Square
  • Socket Set or attachments for your drill
  • 7/8″ paddle bit to countersink your lag bolts
  • 1/4″ bit to drill pilot holes for your lag bolts and to create drain holes
  • 1″ bit to drill the top of the PVC
  • Saw to cut your lumber
  • Marker
  • Sandpaper

Instructions

So let’s get started.

Step 1 : Cut the wood & PVC to size

  1. The 4×4’s should be exactly 21 1/2″ and perfectly square.
  2. The 2×4’s should be 33 1/4″ or slightly longer as explained in the video
  3. The PVC should be 8′ long and you can optionally add a 45* angle cut as seen in the video

Step 2: Drill the holes in your 2 x 4’s

  1. I made a Jig to help me countersink the holes on each end of the 2×4
  2. Align it and drill partway through your 2×4, just deep enough to recess the head of your lag bolt and a washer.
  3. The drill bit should be wide enough to receive your socket
  4. Then drill out the center with your pilot hole bit.

Step 3: Drill the pilot holes in your 4×4’s

  1. Align the 2×4 to the 4×4 and make it square
  2. Using the pilot hole in your 2×4, drill the pilot hole into your 4×4, and bolt it on with a 4” lag bolt and a washer
  3. Check to make sure you’re square and attach the second bolt
  4. Repeat this process for all four corners, one bolt at a time, and your box is complete.

Step 4: Mark your box for the positions of the PVC.

  1. 1st measure your kayak, the width of the indentions on the bottom. For a Hobie Outback they are 11.5” apart. That means you want your PVC to be 11.5” apart, center point to center point.
  2. Using your square mark your box with those lines. Also, make an X on that line in the center of the 4×4

Step 5: Mark your PVC

  1. Layout your PVC on the ground parallel to the box and center it so that the amount of tubing to either side of the box is even.
  2. Spin the PVC until the line printed on it is pointing straight up. Now mark that line for where it will connect to the 4×4
  3. Using the pilot hole bit, drill through the top and bottom of the tubing, and repeat for the hole where the tubing will attach to the other 4×4
  4. Now spin the pipe over to the other side, and using a larger paddle bit, make the hole on the top large enough to fit your socket into it.

Step 6: Attach the PVC to the box using the 3” lag bolts and a washer

  1. It’s helpful to lay the PVC onto the box and looking down through the holes, align the pre-drilled pilot hole with the x.
  2. Drill the pilot hole in the 4×4 and attach the 1st lag bolt loosely.
  3. Now you can swing the PVC into place until you see the line on the other 4×4 through the second hole in the PVC. Simply mark and drill your pilot, then attach it with another 3” lag bolt and washer.
  4. Repeat the process for the second PVC tube and you’re all done
  5. Use a flashlight in the tube to assist with sight

Step 7: Attach the Feet

Step 8: Assemble your ULINE cart per the instructions

Step 9: Drain Holes

  1. Drill drain holes at a 45* angle through the corners of the cart and tray; you’ll also want some in the center

Step 10: Finally, drop your box into the top tray and you’re ready to go.

~Kayak Fishing Addict

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ron

My name is Ron. I’m “Kayak Fishing Addict” on YouTube! I was bit by the kayak fishing bug and I’ve been addicted ever since. This is my blog where I discuss everything about my kayak fishing adventures, including the backstory. I’ll share what fishing lures I use, the types of fish I catch like redfish, speckled trout, and flounder, how I film, and what I encountered in the marsh. You’ll get all of my kayak fishing catches, tips, and tricks that you can use to put more fish in the boat!

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7 comments

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    • Yes, you can. Lag bolts will be stronger, but wood screws would work too. Just be sure they’re galvanized…. when you spray your kayak off you’ll want to avoid rusting out the screws.

  • Hey Ron, brilliant design. Question for you. I noticed you have a smaller truck. I have a full size F150, I didn’t know if the cart, plus PVC pipes would be tall enough to slide the kayak into my bed. From the concrete to my open tailgate is 35 3/4″. Could you please give me the measurements from the ground to the bottom of your yak?

  • I have a question so they say you shouldn’t leave your kayak on a flat surface on the hull side if I built this system would I be able to keep my kayak stored on the PVC pipes without damaging the hull for long term storage

    • Hi Rick. I’ve heard the same thing. All I can share is what I do, my results, and what Hobie says.

      What I Do
      I leave my kayak on the hull side on these pipes in my garage in North Florida without issue. My Hobie dealer stores kayaks on racks in a similar way and he even stores them straight up in the air standing on the bow! I think you just have to be careful of where the stress/weight is on the kayak. You don’t want to warp or flatten out any areas that shouldn’t be. On this rack the weight is distributed along the grooves on the bottom from bow to stern.

      What Hobie Says
      https://www.hobie.com/articles/storing-your-kayak,85/

      The key to me is that they’ll sell you a cradle that will support the kayak in n-spots where n is the number of cradles you purchase which is likely two.

ron

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