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  1. #1
    TimeBandit's Avatar
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    SCH80 PVC Rack - Cored

    Hey, I wanted to share my PVC rack build. Liked the many designs I’ve seen on the web so far, and decided to make a go at it myself. I’m posting this up, not only the design a little deferent, but also the fact that I chose a few different methodologies and materials. I also decided to ‘core’ the project – I’ll explain that a little later.

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    Above is the finished product. I got this thing on the back of an old FXHO. It holds several rods, a 5-gal live-well, and a tackle cooler. Extremely sturdy !!

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    Above pic – Because this 2005 has a curved boarding deck, I made these risers from a pressure-treated 2X4. I used a big wad of aluminum foil, squashed it against the deck in order to copy the general profile/curve. Traced this curve onto the wood. Laid-up a fiberglass skin over the whole piece, then painted black. Added rubber to bottom side. Long screws and adhesive permanently attach them to the PVC rack. These risers are the only things that need to be customize if one wanted this same rack design on a different ski.


    Now, on to the construction:
    So I used 1 1/4” OD schedule-80 PVC. It is thicker-walled, so a little more ridged. #80 is easily recognizable being gray. Just be sure it is plumbing – not the the gray electrical conduit. The black union pieces were the pricey items. These were purchased online from a PVC furniture supplier, which I think came-in around $90 USD.

    The project can be split into 3 sub-projects. I’ve included all union fittings and measuments in the pics below.


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    { Bottom section }


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    { Middle section }


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    { Top section }




    Coring . . . almost forgot :
    I decided for ultimate strength, due to later wanting to bolt a trolling motor onto this rack. Once fully assembled using the standard PVC cement, I pored epoxy inside all the tubes. Knowing this beforehand, I noted the some of these furniture PVC unions are deliberately blocked (I guess so they don’t get used for actual plumbing applications). Anyway,I used a drill-press to violate the blocks, so that after being assembled, the resin will flow into every pipe section.

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    Ok, so for the resin core, I chose cheap laminating epoxy, a 4:1 ratio. Didn’t do typical polyester resin - shrinkage issues. I mixed this in very small batches and added chopped strand glass fibers for added strength. The many many many small batch mixing & poring was to reduce heat build-up from the curing process. Timing these 10 oz batches to a hour each kept the heat down, yet took so time to complete the coring. I used about 1.3 gallons to fill the entire network of pipes. That added about a gallon or two worth weight. Heavier - yeah. Worth it - double-yeah!
    Last edited by TimeBandit; 08-22-2017 at 06:02 PM. Reason: Fixed broke images


  2. #2
    GOT BOOST? Dockside's Avatar
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    I've never seen a write up like this. Great job!!!

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