How to build a PVC boat trailer

Written by robert dyer
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How to build a PVC boat trailer
A homemade PVC trailer is useful and inexpensive for an inflatable boat owner. (boat trailer image by wiladayvo from Fotolia.com)

Making your own PVC boat trailer for your inflatable boat will save you a lot of money compared to the cost of buying a trailer for the inflatable boat. Using some simple techniques, this boat trailer can be easily constructed and will be very inexpensive to construct. This will be a 10-foot trailer with a 4-by-8-foot rectangle area to which you lash the inflatable boat. It will have two trailer lights that will let others know when you are coming to a stop

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 10-foot section of 5-inch-diameter PVC pipe.
  • Two 8-foot sections of 5-inch-diameter PVC pipe.
  • Two 4-foot sections of 5-inch-diameter PVC pipe
  • One 6-foot-long 6-by-6-inch board
  • 1-inch-diameter 8-inch steel rods with threaded ends
  • 1-inch-diameter 14-inch carriage bolts
  • 1-inch-diameter lock washers
  • 1-inch-diameter nuts
  • Two trailer wheels with 1-inch-diameter centre holes
  • Crescent wrench
  • Drill
  • 1-inch drill bit
  • Screwdriver bit
  • Screws
  • Two 12-volt trailer lights
  • Trailer hitch electrical plug
  • 24 feet of black 14-gauge electrical wire
  • 24 feet of red 14-gauge electrical wire
  • Electrical tape
  • Wire stripper/cutter
  • Tape measure
  • Black marker
  • Zip ties
  • Trailer ball receptacle

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Drill 1-inch-diameter holes in the centre of each end of the 6-by-6-inch board.

  2. 2

    Screw a 1-inch-diameter steel rod into each end of the 6-by-6 board. This will create a 6 feet long 6-by-6 axle.

  3. 3

    Place a wheel on each end of the axle by putting the 1-inch-diameter steel rod through the 1-inch centre of the trailer wheel.

  4. 4

    Place a 1-inch-diameter lock washer over the end of each steel rod and next to the hub of each trailer wheel.

  5. 5

    Tighten a 1-inch-diameter nut onto the end of each steel rod. This will secure the trailer wheels to the axle.

  1. 1

    Place the 10-feet-long 5-inch-diameter PVC pipe in the centre of the trailer's axle.

  2. 2

    Move the 10-feet-long 5-inch-diameter PVC pipe to where the axle is 2 feet from the end of the PVC pipe.

  3. 3

    Mark two spots centred over the axle that are 2 inches apart from each other on the PVC pipe.

  4. 4

    Drill a 1-inch hole through the PVC pipe and the axle at these points.

  5. 5

    Put 1-inch-diameter carriage bolts through these points. Make sure the carriage bolts go through the PVC pipe and the axle.

  6. 6

    Place 1-inch-diameter lock washers over the ends of the carriage bolts.

  7. 7

    Tighten a 1-inch-diameter nut onto the end of each of the carriage bolts. This will secure the trailer hauling piece to the axle.

  1. 1

    Place the two 4-foot sections of PVC on the 10-foot PVC pipe parallel to each other and perpendicular to the 10-foot pipe. Make sure that the ends of the 4-foot sections are parallel to each other, as these will be the ends of the 4-by-8-foot rectangle.

  2. 2

    Measure and mark two spots centred on the 10-foot PVC pipe 1 1/2 inches apart from each other on each of the 4-foot PVC pipes.

  3. 3

    Drill a 1-inch hole through the PVC pipes at these points.

  4. 4

    Put 1-inch-diameter carriage bolts through these holes. Make sure the carriage bolts go through both of the PVC pipes.

  5. 5

    Put a 1-inch-diameter lock washer over the ends of each of the carriage bolts.

  6. 6

    Tighten a 1-inch-diameter nut onto each end of the carriage bolts. This will secure the trailer's crosspieces to the trailer's hauling piece.

  7. 7

    Place the 8-foot PVC pipes parallel to each other over the 4-foot PVC pipes. This will create a 4-by-8-foot rectangle of PVC pipes.

  8. 8

    Measure and mark two spots on each end of the 8-foot PVC pipes 1 1/2 inches apart from each other on centred over the ends of each of the 4-foot PVC pipes.

  9. 9

    Drill a 1-inch hole through the PVC pipes at these points.

  10. 10

    Put 1-inch-diameter carriage bolts through these holes. Make sure the carriage bolts go through both of the PVC pipes.

  11. 11

    Put a 1-inch-diameter lock washer over the ends of each of the carriage bolts.

  12. 12

    Tighten a 1-inch-diameter nut onto each end of the carriage bolts. This will secure the trailer's side pieces of the 4-by-8-foot rectangle to the trailer's cross pieces. The trailer is complete at this point except for attaching and wiring the trailer lights and attaching the trailer ball receptacle.

  1. 1

    Attach the trailer lights to the axle, one either side of the trailer, using screws and screwing the trailer lights to the axle.

  2. 2

    Cut the 24 feet of black 14-gauge electrical wire in half.

  3. 3

    Strip back one end of each of the 12-foot lengths of the black 14-gauge electrical wire.

  4. 4

    Join the stripped end of each one of the 12-foot lengths of the black 14-gauge electrical wire to each trailer light on the black wire that is coming out of each trailer light. Wrap electrical tape over the point where the wires are joined. This will create a 12-foot section of black wire coming from each one of the trailer lights.

  5. 5

    Cut the 24-foot length of red 14-gauge electrical wire in half.

  6. 6

    Strip back one end of each of the 12-foot lengths of the red 14-gauge electrical wire.

  7. 7

    Join the stripped end of each one of the 12-foot lengths of red 14-gauge electrical wire to each trailer light on the red wire that is coming out of each trailer light. Wrap electrical tape over the point where the wires are joined. This will create a 12-foot section of red wire coming from each one of the trailer lights.

  8. 8

    Attach all of the trailer's wires to the 10-foot PVC pipe that is the trailer's hauling piece by laying them along the PVC pipe and then wrapping a zip tie over the PVC pipe and the wires. Then tighten down the zip tie to secure the wires to the PVC pipe.

  9. 9

    Strip back the end of each of the red and black wires that has reached the end of the PVC pipe.

  10. 10

    Plug the stripped ends of the wires into the trailer hitch electrical plug. This will allow the trailer lights to be plugged into the electrical system of the vehicle that is hauling the trailer.

  11. 11

    Attach the trailer ball receptacle to the end of the 10-foot PVC pipe that is the trailer's hauling piece.

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