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My $5 Ultimate Cart


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19 replies to this topic

#1 B.A.R.K.

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 01:23 PM

Okay, this isn't five dollars worth of total materials, but this is just to show that you can build a functional cart from stuff that you have around your garage/shop, and not look like a hack job.

Wheels/Axle/Retainers: Scavenged from an old Power Wheels that someone gave me. I took the parts I might want and tossed the rest

Frame: Obviously made from PVC, 3/4". I had a few fittings and pipe left over from a garden project and spent around $5 on tees, caps, and the 45* fitting to complete the design. I had this Kyrlon Fusion paint on hand from another project, and was a perfect match. Everything is glued together, so it isn't collapsible, but I dont think it needs to be due to its small size. If you really wanted, you could add a threaded tee to the design where the upright meets the base.

Very light weight an the width is narrow enough to fit nicely between the gunnels of my Ultimate 14.5 tandem. I would like to say that I intended for the tires to fit in between the gunnels this way, but it was pretty much luck, as the fittings determined the width in between the wheels.

This set up might not work with rudder equipped boats, but I've had a rudder on other kayaks and don't think I will want one on this one. I suppose a variation of this mount could be modified to work with rudder equipped boats.

Mock up and dry fitting with raw materials.
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Assembly after paint, and waiting for the hub cap covers to dry. Here you can see the wheel retainers. Not easily removable, but easy to recycle, and are sturdy enough for almost ever kids toy out there.
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This picture should tie everything together for those that might not be following me up to this point. The double female coupling at the stern of the kayak remains in place, and the cart simply plugs into the coupling. The female coupling is held in place by the two screws designed for the rudder system (which you can see in the fourth photo). The small notch at the top of the 3/4" pipe allows clearance for the SS screws that hold the female coupling in place.
The mechanics of it. This design might seem flimsy compare to other carts, but the design was intended to be minimalistic. While pulling the cart, the top tube is being forced into the coupling. The strap is secured to the cart with a stainless steel eye strap. This strap keeps the cart tight against the kayak, and prevents it from walking out from underneath it. The side to side motion keeping the wheels parallel to the kayak is also controlled by the upper pipe that is plugged into the female coupling. Kind of like pushing a golf hand cart.
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The kayak's weight is supported at three points. The keel, and the two post that contact the hull. I will add some thin non-skid pads to this, or some rubber stool leg caps if I can find the right size.
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I have a couple more pictures associated with this cart that I will share later. I didn't realize how out of focus they were until I went to upload them.

This was a fun project that I completed the day after I bought the cart, and realized I didn't want to tear up this magnificent hull by dragging it like I always have with my last three kayaks. I have a couple more PVC inspired projects that I am dreaming up for this boat, but I wanted to cut my teeth on this one.
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#2 inrll

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 02:38 PM

I have a pvc cart that worked perfectly for my Ocean Kayak but not so good for my Ultimate. I can easily convert it to your set up though. I've been kicking ideas around for over a year and yours is by far the most simple. A big part of what makes your cart so cool is I can already see how easily you will be able to put the fully loaded kayak back on the cart at the end of the day. Genius design! Thanks for sharing!

#3 jediangler

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 06:31 PM

Looks good. The only faults I can find is that because the cart is at the end of the yak, you'll be lifting and carrying all the weight with your arm. That and the lack of clearance from the axle to the ground. If you are on pavement that won't be a problem but if you get off the beaten trail you might be working very hard to keep the yak moving.
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#4 B.A.R.K.

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 07:57 AM

Looks good. The only faults I can find is that because the cart is at the end of the yak, you'll be lifting and carrying all the weight with your arm. That and the lack of clearance from the axle to the ground. If you are on pavement that won't be a problem but if you get off the beaten trail you might be working very hard to keep the yak moving.

Technically, with the location of this axle, I am holding less than than half the weight, but I understand what you are saying. My 2.5 years old son can lift the end of the empty kayak, and that is another reason for these light weight tandem kayaks. If you can't lift half the weight of the kayak to tow it, how are you going to lift all of the weight to get it off the balanced cart?

I have used another cart that was more centered under the kayak than this one, and here are my thoughts. Think of this as a seesaw. With the wheels (fulcrum) closer to the center, when you lift the carrying end of the kayak, the other end has to proportionally go in the other direction, down. That means if you want the carrying end of the kayak at a comfortable height (say 30"), so that you aren't hunched over while moving it, the kayak support (above the fulcrum) needs to be around 15" high so that the other end of the kayak isn't dragging on the ground/pavement. In my opinion, the carts that are elevated make the kayak/cart unstable.

I'm not too worried about axle clearance. If the terrain is rough enough that I am dragging the axle on the high spots, the wheels probably won't roll well over the terrain. I don't plan to tow this setup behind my mountain bike on a trail, just across parking lots, boat launches, piers, and the occasional walking trail.

Is this cart perfect? Not by a long shot. Is it right for me? For $5, definitely.

#5 B.A.R.K.

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 08:12 AM

Here are a couple of the more detailed pictures.

Stern coupling.
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Fitting arrangement for kayak and axle support.
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Overall.
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I don't foresee a situation where I think I will have to bring the cart in the kayak with me, but it nice that it is an option.
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It's like it was made to be stored in this position.
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This one doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but it shows that the stern coupling can be used as an accessory mount for more than just this cart.

http://www.pirate4x4...cs-img_5774.jpg

#6 jediangler

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 07:30 PM

If you mounted a GoPro on it in that last shot you would have a great camera angle for video of yourself while fishing.

#7 Mikem

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 08:55 PM

Great job BARK. Really like your idea.

#8 DarrenM

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 11:37 PM

Well done!

#9 kwhart

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Posted 07 June 2013 - 08:53 AM

I gotta have one of those, where did you get those wheels??

#10 B.A.R.K.

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Posted 07 June 2013 - 10:42 AM

If you mounted a GoPro on it in that last shot you would have a great camera angle for video of yourself while fishing.

That was my initial thought, but it is not very sturdy by itself without some type of secondary support. It could just be the weight of the wheels cantilevered so far out, but if I would mount a camera here, I would do something else to make sure my $300+ camera didn't go for a dip. If you glued the upright into the coupling, instead of the press fit, I think that would suffice.
It does make a great "no drill" mount many light weight accessories such as stern lights, flags, etc. The angle of the mount is very close to 45 degrees, so normal PVC fittings work for any design that you could dream up. Just keep in mind what the design limitations are for the threaded inserts in the hull. Light weight applications without much force.

Edit: As I am typing this, I thought of a nice way to accomplish this. Gluing a short stub of pipe into the upper part of the coupling, with a 45 to turn it vertical, and threaded cap would give you a pretty secure multi-mount for the above mentioned items. I think the fittings could even be shaved down to not stick out above the top of the gunnel when not in use.

Great job BARK. Really like your idea.


Well done!

Thanks.

I gotta have one of those, where did you get those wheels??

The wheels were scavanged from a Power Wheels Eliminator Buggy similar to the one linked below. I pulled the rear tires and gear boxes to modify a Power Wheels Jeep for my son. The front tires, hub caps, and axle were left over, and great candidate for the kayak cart. Light weight, no flats, narrow contact patch on hard surfaces, wide contact patch on soft stuff like sand, and they will float. I don't know what the weight capacity of each wheel is, but the kids toy is rated for 130 lbs. The steering components on these kids toys usually break before anything else, so I don't think the wheels are the weak link.
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If the wheels were the weak link on the cart, we could break it down. Four wheels supporting 130 lbs, 65 lbs per axle, Ultimate 14.5 weighs ~70 lbs, 35 lbs supported on each end of the kayak, so that would allow another 60 lbs of additional gear in the boat while carting, assuming that everything is evenly distributed. I personally wouldn't load another 60 lbs in the boat, but my son hoping in for a ride while carting the kayak isn't far fetched.

#11 jediangler

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Posted 07 June 2013 - 11:24 AM

They never had cool toys like that when I was a kid.
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#12 uscgairdale

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Posted 10 June 2013 - 08:19 PM

This homemade cart inspired me to give it a try myself. I used some wheels from harbor freight and made one modification from the original post. Instead of end caps to hold the weight of the kayak, I used some slip tees to increase the surface area of the contact area. A side benefit of this is that you can run your tiedown straps through them. I'm headed out Friday to launch off the beach near Oregon Inlet, NC to fish for cobia so I'll give a report on how well it works. Pro: cost me only $16. Conn: I'll need a different cart for when I get a rudder.

#13 Padre

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Posted 12 June 2013 - 09:50 PM

Very cool. Nice job.

#14 TJR178

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Posted 26 June 2013 - 07:25 AM

This is great! I'm going to try this tonight on my U12A.

#15 shortmarie

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Posted 26 June 2013 - 03:42 PM

Very smart! Have you made a boat cover for your ultimate? My first outting, my boat filled with rain on the ride home.

#16 jaytinsky

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 10:26 AM

those wheels look like they might work on sand if under inflated. Wheelez are very spendy. Wonder if you can procure those wheels somewhere else?

jt



#17 mikeyFish

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 10:36 PM

Very nice, simple design!

 

tires from Northern Tool (used on my Mariner since 2011 except I used a metal axel) pool noodles make good slide-on padding for PVC

http://www.northernt...uct_18846_18846

 

also, a little 303 on the tires makes 'em last longer



#18 smithmal

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Posted 16 July 2017 - 12:50 AM

This homemade cart inspired me to give it a try myself. I used some wheels from harbor freight and made one modification from the original post. Instead of end caps to hold the weight of the kayak, I used some slip tees to increase the surface area of the contact area. A side benefit of this is that you can run your tiedown straps through them. I'm headed out Friday to launch off the beach near Oregon Inlet, NC to fish for cobia so I'll give a report on how well it works. Pro: cost me only $16. Conn: I'll need a different cart for when I get a rudder.

 

Don't suppose you could provide pics?



#19 smithmal

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Posted 16 July 2017 - 12:51 AM

Very nice, simple design!

 

tires from Northern Tool (used on my Mariner since 2011 except I used a metal axel) pool noodles make good slide-on padding for PVC

http://www.northernt...uct_18846_18846

 

also, a little 303 on the tires makes 'em last longer

 

Thanks... quick question.  How does one add those tires to a PVC pipe?

 

smithmal



#20 Slow Stroke

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Posted 27 January 2018 - 11:29 AM

Cool!






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