Quick Dog Sled

Introduction: Quick Dog Sled

This is a sled I created several years ago to run our dogs. I have deconstructed the dog sled and put it back together to create an instructable for the Snow Contest. Please vote in the contest. 

I have made three of these dog sleds from stuff I was going to trash. Build time is 30-60 minutes. The sleds are featherweight, durable and will provide hours of fun..

Step 1: Alpha and Beta Sleds

On the first one I faced the chair forward and hitched up Daisy, our very fast dog. I think she might be a Lurcher or a cull from a sled dog breeder. My kids, the crash test dummies, called it the death sled after trying it out while sitting in the chair. They were laughing and screaming so hard they wouldn’t have felt a thing. You could add another spreader bar/ footstand in to allow for a safety driver in the rear.

I turned the chair around on the next two and found that offers much more control. You can hold the arms to stand on the spreader bar and sit on your knees up on the chair once you're cruising. 

Step 2: Tools and Materials

1 old plastic lawn chair
1 pair old skis
1x2” or 1x4” piece of wood 24" long

6ea. - #10 x 2” machine screws,
6ea. - #10 nuts,
2ea. – 1.5” drywall screws

I quickly built the 1st chair just using drywall screws but they eventually broke and/or loosened.

Drill driver
3/8” drill bit
5/32” drill bit
Phillips head screwdriver
3/8” deep socket or wrench (or 3/8” wrench or nut driver)
Hot glue gun
Tape measure

Step 3: Bolt the Chair to the Skis

Line up the skis evenly, eyeball the center of gravity and position the chair on top of the skis in a comfortable position, center the legs on the skis. (I positioned the chair backwards so the sled driver can hold onto the arms of the chair)

Use a piece of 1x2” or 1x4” as a spreader bar/ footstand  for the front chair legs as they are wider than the back ones.

Bolt the chair to the skis.

Step 4: Construction

Use 5/32” bit to drill through each rear leg of the chair and partially into the ski
Remove the chair and finish drilling the holes through the skis
Turn the skis over and use the 3/8” bit to drill a countersink hole for the head of each bolt.
Run a machine screw through the hole, making sure it doesn’t protrude. If it does, countersink a little deeper. You will seal the holes later with hot glue.
Place the chair onto these screws.  This will help align everything square.

Measure the distance between the inner edges of the skis where the legs are attached.
Align the skis parallel (using the measurement you just took) beneath the other chair legs.

Drill a hole through the wooden spreader partially into the skis. Center the holes.
Remove chair and drill the rear holes just like you did the front holes. 

Use two more machine screws, washers and nuts to secure the wooden spreader bar.
Attach washers and nuts and tighten down everything with wrench

Place the chair back onto the screws once again, add washers & nuts and hand tighten snug.

Drill 5/32" holes through the chair legs and the wooden footstand/spreader bar.
Insert machine screws with washers through these holes, add other washers, nuts and tighten everything down with the 3/8" wrench.

I used drywall screws to attach another 1x2” for a bigger footstand/spreader bar. If you use a 1x4” you won’t need this piece.  

Step 5: Attach a Lead Rope

Turn the sled over and use a hot glue gun to fill in the countersunk holes.  Cut off excess smooth with a razor blade.

Tie a rope through the slats on the back of the chair to attach a lead.

Step 6: Mush!

For a lead I used a skijoring lead which is just a poly rope with a bungie cord through it.

Attach your best canine friend and let her take you for a ride. 

Give it a try.  It is best to help the dog get running a bit by standing on the spreader bar and kicking. Use Fred Flintstone braking techniques to steer and stop. Once you get going it is a really fun ride.

Snow Contest 2

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Snow Contest 2

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    7 years ago on Introduction

    Very clever. My son is working on a science project for a land-based (grass or cement) dog sled that will pull 200 lb 6 ft man. Any suggestions or advise? Thanks so much!


    Reply 4 years ago

    But wheels on da bottomd


    8 years ago on Introduction

    That is really neat! We don't get much snow where I live, but do you think that it would work on a grassy hill?


    8 years ago on Introduction

    Hi - would be great if you could email me. I´d love to use a photo of your project in a print publication. Cheers & best from Berlin, jens.thiel /at/ gmail.com


    9 years ago on Step 6

    This is awesome! Any chance of posting a video of one in action. Surely it would bring smiles.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    try adding a spreader near the front, just behind where the tip on the skis are, then tying your rope to that, that away if your dog suddenly changes direction, the sled won't tip as easily. Plus, at the spacer that you could stand on, you could attach a board that would be on an arm of some sort, so that you could step on it to make a kind of break that would dig into the snow.