Truckbed PVC Bike Rack

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Introduction: Truckbed PVC Bike Rack

We recently bought two bikes and instead of just throwing the bikes onto the bed of the truck and get them scratched, I build one using PVC pipes from the hardware store.

I made it at TechShop since it's a lot more spacious and they have all the tools available.

Step 1: Materials and Tools

- Four 10-ft 3/4" PVC pipes
- 6 3/4" elbows
- 18 3/4" Tees
- Chop Saw
- PVC glues
- mallet (optional)

Step 2: Cutting the Pieces

The first step is to measure and cut all the pipes. I have a 1996 Toyota Tacoma and I built the rack to fit my truck. If you have a different truck you'll want to measure your truck and cut the pipes accordingly to fit your truck bed.

Even though we only have two bikes I wanted to build a rack that fits four bikes but my truck is too narrow so I settled for three. The pipes I needed are:

10" pipes x 12
12" pipes x 6
6" pipes x 6
2" pipes x 9

A chop saw cuts the pipes very nicely and make sure you wear safety goggles since the debris from cutting can fly. Also be very carefully when you cut the 2" pipes.

Step 3: Assembly Step 1

I started putting the pipes together without using any glue first to make sure the final rack will fit my truck. Since I needed to take it apart later to glue, I didn't push the pipes all the way into the tees/elbows. This made the rack slightly larger at this point. Make sure you take this into account when you try to dry-fit the rack in your truck.

The first pieces to build are three horizonal pieces. They were each built with:

 - two elbows
 - four tees
 - three 2" pipes 
 - two 10" pipes

Step 4: Assembly Step 2

Now we build the vertical pieces where the bike tires will go. They're very simple and are each made of:

 - one 12" pipe
 - one 10" pipe
 - one tee

Step 5: Assembly Step 3

The face of the rack is put together using the pieces from the two previous steps. The picture shows it upside down. The pieces I used are:

 - two horizontal pieces from step 1
 - six vertical pieces from step 2


Step 6: Assembly Step 4

Now we put the feet of the rack together. With the face of the rack still upside down, instead six of the 10" pipes into the tee as shown in the picture.

Step 7: Assembly Step 5

Put the remaining horizontal piece from step 1 in, and we're now ready to see if it fits the truck bed.

Step 8: Dry Fit

Bring it to your truck and make sure it fits. If not you may need to adjust the length of the pipes. Note that in my picture the rack barely fitted between the two wheel wells because this was just a dry run and I didn't push the pipes all the way in.

If everything fits properly, take the rack apart and glue the pieces together using PVC glues. If you use regular PVC glues (the clear stuff) you'll want to prime the joints with PVC primer first. Alternatively you can buy the "Rain-R-Shine" clue (blue) and save you the priming step. The reassembly will be much easier if you use a rubber mallet.


Step 9: Completed!

This is how the rack looks in my truck bed with bikes. I use ratchet straps to secure the bikes so they don't move around when I drive on the freeway. You can buy ratchet straps from places like Home Depot or Harbor Freight.

17 People Made This Project!

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39 Comments

0
jhlambert1968
jhlambert1968

15 days ago on Step 1

To make the bike rack you described, you only need three 10ft 3/4" PVC pipes, not four.

0
rfree190
rfree190

4 months ago

I have a full size GMC P/U, so I modified a bit to fit 6 bikes! I just reverse each one and they all fit great! Thanks for a great project!

BikeRack.jpg
0
Manuelmartinez6436
Manuelmartinez6436

5 months ago

will this bicycle rack accommodated 29in wheel

0
marstons99
marstons99

8 months ago

This was a fun, easy, and cheap project. Thanks for the idea. Better than throwing my road bike into the bed on its side and a whole lot cheaper than $200+ commercial racks.

0
marstons99
marstons99

Tip 8 months ago

If you want to keep the 3-bike configuration, but the rack is too narrow for your bed, you can replace the elbows in the feet with tee fittings and then add extension pipes on either side that extend to the front bed sides. It'll make the rack sit tight in the bed.

Great Project .... Thank you for the plans.

I have Ram 1500 and I modified the plans for 4 bikes, I used his dimensions and everything work out fine .... I could have even used 12 inch pipes for the distance between bikes, but the 10 inch pipes did the job.

I do use one strap from the bottom over the top of the bikes to the bottom on the other side, This Bike rack does the job and really easy to build.
Thanks Again

in case any needs the materials for a 4 bike rack, here you go:
( mind you you need a full size pickup)


Four 10-ft 3/4" PVC pipes ( I only used 3 10ft 3/4" pipes)





3/4 Elbows 6





3/4 Tees 26






PVC Glue 1






mallet 1

QTY of Pipes for 4 Bike racks
length QTY
12" 8
10" 17
6" 8

2" 12

IMG_2317.jpgIMG_2302.jpg
1
roll62.
roll62.

2 years ago

This project came out great but is there any trick when transporting two bikes using this? I tried using a ratchet to secure two bikes in different positions and this did not work. The bikes kept being forced into each other and the components and paint would get scratched up when tightened down during transport. I would love to hear from somebody if there is a special way they tightened down their bikes using this rack? Thanks

0
iwrk4dedpr
iwrk4dedpr

Reply 1 year ago

Why not:
1. Make a PVC pipe that goes around seat posts or something that holds the bikes apart.
2. Someone else posted pic showing an addition to help stabilize the front wheel.

0
FastFlyBy
FastFlyBy

Reply 10 months ago

A common practice to prevent things like this from moving side to side when using straps, is to wrap or loop the strap around the object, in this case the top tube or the seatpost, before ratcheting it tight.

0
callahan45
callahan45

5 years ago on Step 9

I built this today, making two changes from louislam's design: capped pipes on all three tire holders, and 3" pieces where he has 2", to allow plenty of room for mountain bike tires. Very pleased except for the wretched barcode and price stickers on every flippin' piece of material. More work to rub them off than to build the rack.

0
JoshG167
JoshG167

Reply 2 years ago

That’s why I just spray painted mine. It gets scratched up from the spray in bedliner anyhow.

0
JoshG166
JoshG166

2 years ago

I built this rack this week and am very impressed with it! I modified it a little (used 12 12" pipes and 6 10" pipes) to make it a bigger. Fits the back of my 2016 Colorado perfectly between the wheel wells, and there is plenty of room for 3 bikes or 2 bikes and a trailer. Loving it!

IMG_7289-1.jpegIMG_7282-1.jpegIMG_7294.jpegIMG_7318.jpeg
0
TreyM27
TreyM27

Reply 2 years ago

Do you have a long bed or short? It seems, with the shortbox on the colorado, that it's not long enough to build this and still shut the tailgate.

0
JoshG167
JoshG167

Reply 2 years ago

I have the long bed. Just enough room for the bike to be in this rack with the tailgate up. Definitely wouldn’t work for you with a short box.

That being said, you could put the bike in backwards and take the front wheel off. Then it should fit. Just a thought.

2
vuhranza
vuhranza

Question 2 years ago

What are the final dimensions, if these exact measurements are followed? Thank you in advance to anyone who has built it.

1
RickH60
RickH60

5 years ago

Sweet little project! Built today took me 45 minutes! I would say however I am not sure why you list 4 10 ft pipes I have a whole one + one at 114 in left lol. Oh well cheap material.

0
RickH60
RickH60

Reply 5 years ago

possibly the list was for the 4 bike rack instead of 3? No worries. Great little invention. You ought to build and sell these. I know of a few million bearded Portlandians that could not change a tire or much less build this that would love it!

0
callahan45
callahan45

5 years ago on Introduction

The pix seem to show that each of the six vertical sections--the tire-grippers--are made of a twelve and a six, not a twelve and a ten. That makes the math come out right on the number of tens, six in the horizontal sections and six in the foot piece.

0
roy56
roy56

5 years ago on Introduction

Your instructions need some tweeking. There is no mention of where to use the 6 inch pieces or making sure which end of the 10 " & 12" pieces face when assembling the rack.

0
CharlesA9
CharlesA9

5 years ago on Step 5

I've had PVC piping on my roof to supply water for solar water panels for my pool. They've been up there for 15 yrs and the sun hasn't affected the serviceability. I wouldn't paint them or worry about it.