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Boat racks are used to store boats during the off-season months when they are not in use. Since they are large, boat racks are very expensive. If you are handy enough, you can build a DIY boat rack and save lots of money. You can also make a boat rack just the right size for your boat to conserve space, if you do it yourself.

A simple one is made from timber boards and bolts. Boat racks will prevent damage from ice, wind and the elements, and they provide a winter home for your boat–a very big investment, as docks and marinas often close. So, it is a good idea to spend some money on your boat rack.

Step 1

Measure the width of the boats you wish to store, adding at least six inches of space between each one, to get the width dimensions of your boat rack. Measure the length of the shortest and longest boats and subtract a foot from each end. This gives you a good idea of how big to build your boat rack.

Step 2

Dig four holes about a foot into the ground, each one at the corner of your boat rack using the dimensions you gained in Step 1.

Step 3

Cut 4-inch x 4-inch boards to the height of your boat rack. Determine this by the number of rows in your rack, and the height of your boats. Remember to add a foot to the height of the tallest boat for the total row height, and add at least 2 feet to the overall height, since your first row will be a foot from the ground and the board will be sunk a foot into the ground.

Step 4

Sink the 4-inch x 4-inch boards into the hole and cover them with a layer of gravel and then concrete. Level them with a carpenter level every hour or so as they dry. Tap them to the left or right as needed with a hammer to maintain a level orientation for your DIY boat rack.

Step 5

Cut 4-inch x 4-inch boards to match the length of your boat rack and install these to the upright posts as braces using a drill and 6-inch galvanized steel bolts with nuts.

Step 6

Cut more 4-inch x 4-inch boards for the cross-sections, matching the width of the boat rack. Drill and attach these inside the upright posts on top of the lengthwise cross braces you installed in Step 5. These are the supports for the boat. Repeat Steps 5 and 6 for each row of your new DIY boat rack.

Tools and materials you might need to build a boat rack yourself. Find them online at a discount!

  • Tape measure
  • Shovel
  • Concrete
  • Gravel
  • 4-inch x 4-inch boards (treated outdoor)
  • Carpenter level
  • Power drill
  • Table saw
  • 6-inch galvanized steel bolts