Introduction: 2X4s TRUCK RACK

Hi everyone,

First, thanks for watching my project. I made this truck rack for myself because im building my deck and i had to transport 16' lumber and the hardware store was charging 60$ per delivery so as a DIYer, i decided that for four 2x4s and couples screws i could build myself a rack. I already had some plywood and black paint to the whole project costed me less than 20$. You can also build this rack for your canoe, kayak, ladder etc ..


First, I am not an engineer and i designed this wood rack for myself. There is no known safe working load for a DIY rack, especially wood rack. So the safest rule is using your judgment. I tested my rack progressively, to make sure everything was safe and nothing was moving. At the end, i was able to transport twenty 16' foot long planks easily and nothing was moving at all. Again, use your judgment, make sure you and everyone on the road is safe. Always strap your load to the truck bed box and not only to the wooden rack. Check your local law if you are allowed to build a rack for your truck and if you can built it with wood.

Step 2: Material Needed

For this project, im using regular 2x4x8 that you will find at your local lumberyard or bigbox hardware store. Im also using some pieces of plywood that was left in my shop to make some better support for the load. Im finishing the rack with some 1x3x8 so add some strengh, because the front and back rack will be tie together. Here's a list of all what you need :

[4x] - 2x4x8 wood studs

[4x] - Plywood leftovers

[2x] - 1x3x8

[1x] - Construction Adhesive ( PL Premium )

[1x] - Plumber’s Strapping

[6x] - ''S'' Hooks

[4x] - GRK lag screw ( 5'' )

1x] - Wood screw box

[1x] - Black Paint ( Optional but your rack will be protected )

Step 3: Cutting the 2x4s

Im cutting the end of the 2x4s with my bandsaw, then i remove 1/8 thickness of the side of the 2x4 so it will fit perfectly but tight in my truck box.

Step 4: Adding the Plywood Supports

I made some plywood supports with some leftovers i had in the shop. The GRK RSS scres will fix the beams in place but the goal here with the plywood pieces is to add some support under the beams. Also, the supports will sit flat on the edge of the truck bed, this will avoid the 2x4 from tilting from front to back when accelerating or braking with a load on the truck rack.

I put 2 screws in each support, before bringing the pieces back in my shop. This will ensure the support will be at the exact position they need to be, sitting flat on the edge of the box and making a good support. In the shop, i remove the 2 screws, add some construction adhesive and put back 11 screws in it. Now it's tough!!

Step 5: Making the Beams

The beams are composed of 2 2x4 that I glued and screwed together. Then i sit them on the plywood support i made earlier and i add 1 GRK Rss lag screws on each side, plus i add 4 construction screws on easy side too.

Step 6: Plywood Corners

We want to add some support again, to secure the 2x4s supports to the 2x4s beams. Easy step, add some glue and some screws and voila!

Step 7: Painting

I started with some spray paint, but finished with a roller. Way way easier with a roller, safe yourself some time and skip the spray paint. I completely forgot to record the second painting part with the roller. lol

Step 8: Securing the Rack on the Truck Bed

Im securing the wood rack to my truck bed with a simple solution. ''S'' hooks and some plumbing strapping. There is no really danger that the wooden rack could lift up by itself, because of the weight of the load.I mostly do this to help the support to always sit flat on the edge of the box, it will just be safer.

Also, as you can see in the last picture, im adding some 1x3x8 wood strapping between the front and the back rack. This will help strengthen both racks, especially when loading/unloading heavy stuff on the rack.

Step 9: Enjoy the Result

Here go go, all done, all painted, brand new. Im very happy with the result. Even if this rack is temporary, it is much more beautiful painted in black. It will sit on my truck bed for the rest of the summer then i will remove it for the winter. I have lots of projects next year so it will be useful again.

Step 10: Get to Work!

Here we go, now it's time to work. My summer project is building my deck, so this is more than useful for me. Overall, the rack costed me less than 20$ ( i already had the plywood pieces and the black paint ). Considering every delivry is 60$ at my local hardware store, i saved a lot of money + now i have a way to transport the canoe for my next camping trip. ( Last year we put the canoe on the car with pool noodles but it scratched the paint on the roof, check the third picture you can see our car. )

Again, use your judgment when using a wood rack. Most light steel rack can hold at most 300lb on it. I think my rack is stronger and can hold more, i putted a lot of wood on it and it was holding great. But remember to not put much since we do not know the maximum load a wood rack can support.

Thanks for watching, if you like my work please subscribe on youtube and share with friends.